Juuust in case you weren’t glued to your television watching The Bachelor and the following “After the Final Rose” special last night, viewers were treated to a major surprise—one that has never been done before in the entire history of the Bachelor franchise! After those rather *ahem* uncomfy conversations between Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell went down during the special, it was announced that both Katie Thurston AND Michelle Young are the next two leads of The Bachelorette!
Instead of pivoting to The Bachelor right after Bachelor in Paradise airs, Reality Steve revealed last week that ABC is doing The Bachelorette twice in a row—Katie’s season (season 17) will be first, and Michelle’s season will take place after BiP wraps. Since we already have the intel of Katie’s season—which you can find riiiight here—it’s time to learn the juicy deets on what’s happening during Michelle’s season.
???? Before we get into it, please be advised that there are some major spoilers for season 18 of The Bachelorette. You! Have! Been! Warned!!! ????
Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe *might* be hosting
After Chris Harrison made some pretty out-of-pocket comments in defense of Rachael’s actions, he announced that he would be stepping aside from the franchise for an undetermined amount of time.
In the meantime, Warner Horizon and ABC Entertainment announced that former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe will be cohosting Katie’s season of The Bachelorette.
“We support Chris in the work that he is committed to doing. In his absence, former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe will support the new Bachelorette through next season,” Warner Horizon and ABC Entertainment’s statement read. “As we continue the dialogue around achieving greater equity and inclusion within The Bachelor franchise, we are dedicated to improving the BIPOC representation of our crew, including among the executive producer ranks. These are important steps in effecting fundamental change so that our franchise is a celebration of love that is reflective of our world.”
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At the moment, it isn’t exactly clear that Tayshia and Kaitlyn will continue to host through Michelle’s Bachelorette season, but it certainly is possible. Also possible? Chris Harrison’s return to the franchise by then. ????
In a recent interview with Good Morning America, Chris said that he’ll be returning to the franchise in some capacity. “I plan to be back and I want to be back. And I think this franchise can be an important beacon of change,” Chris told Michael Strahan. “I know that change is felt, not just by me, but by many others. And we are excited and willing to do the work to show that progress…This interview is not the finish line. There is much more work to be done. And I am excited to be a part of that change.”
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Filming will begin in July
In a spoiler post, Reality Steve initially revealed the timeline of events, and said Michelle’s season will look like so:
“‘Bachelor in Paradise’ will film per usual in June at a location that hasn’t been announced yet and will begin airing after Katie’s season is done airing, per usual.
“Michelle’s ‘Bachelorette’ season will film sometime after ‘BIP’ films (most likely all of July) and air later on in the fall.”
Steve later confirmed in a second spoiler post that Michelle’s season will film between July and August this coming summer.
Michelle chose to have a later season
For a while, production wasn’t sure if they were going to cast Katie as the lead for season 17, and we now know that this is because they were also considering Michelle as a Bachelorette contender. Reality Steve also addressed this in his spoiler post:
“I’m sure some are asking, ‘If they wanted Michelle, why didn’t they just give her the season about to be filmed? Why have Katie as the Bachelorette up first?’”
“The reason is that Michelle did not want to leave her class again to start filming in a few weeks (meaning she’d miss most of the remainder of her school year), hence the reason she is getting her own season this summer when she’s out of school.”
And that’s all we know about Michelle’s season so far. Keep your eyes on this post for updates.
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