The end of The Bachelor may mostly be about watching the rest of Peter Weber’s love story play out, but it’s also a time for fans to start looking to the future and thinking about the next big show within the franchise: The Bachelorette is officially Clare Crawley, who hasn’t appeared on Bachelor Nation since Winter Games in 2018. Given that most new Bachelorettes are typically chosen from the previous Bachelor season, some fans will naturally be curious to know why the 2020 Bachelorette isn’t from Peter’s season. Especially after seeing what's about to happen to Hannah Ann Sluss on Peter's finale.
The truth is, it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact reason behind the decision without entering a network boardroom. But, this isn't the first time the franchise has pulled a surprise move like this before; The Bachelor opted to go with a longtime veteran instead of a newcomer, when Arie Luyendyk Jr. was given the lead rather than one of the men from Rachel Lindsay's preceding Bachelorette season. And before that, Nick Viall was made the Bachelor after a turn on Bachelor in Paradise (and two turns on The Bachelorette). Additionally, it’s no secret that Peter's contestants have been a controversial bunch, even for this show. And while drama tends to be the series’ bread and butter, fans have made it clear that while exciting, this year's drama made it hard to connect with the cast, which could explain why none of them were crowned as the next lead.
Peter’s Decision-Making Deficiencies Meant Fans Couldn't Get To Know His Cast
As Entertainment Tonight’s Lauren Zima pointed out on Twitter, between Peter’s indecisive behavior and a lack of feeling like we know who any of these women really are, it became impossible to know who to root for, even by the time Hometown Dates came around.
#BachelorNation heading into hometowns, not knowing these 4 women well, being confused by Peter's decision-making and feeling as though we have a different villain/ frontrunner each week, with no clarity on who to root for or why ... but also still totally watching #TheBachelor pic.twitter.com/D4xko88yMV— Lauren Zima (@laurenzima) February 11, 2020
Sure, it didn’t stop us from watching to see what would happen next, but it also didn’t allow us to fully understand any of the contestants on a deeper level — probably because Peter himself only seems to really ever scratch the surface with any of them.
The Lack Of Camaraderie Shown Among The Women On The Bachelor
As the season progressed, fans quickly grew tired of the constant feuding and name-calling that took place throughout the season. Tension is to be expected to a certain extent, but for a while it felt as if no one really got along or even liked each other on the show, which can make it hard for any of them to truly reach the level of Bachelorette status. In fact, it made many fans miss the days of prior seasons when the women weren’t constantly tearing each other down: “Remember when the women actually cared for and supported each other? bring that back pls!,” one fan tweeted back in February to the tune of 2k likes.
But that's not to say the women on the show aren't actually friends. Since the Women Tell All, many women have posted photos together and even come to each other's defense after the taping. There was some hand-holding and knowing smiles shared between contestants on the stage. But still, we didn't get any of that during the season, which makes it hard to connect with a potential Bachelorette.
The Fans Asked For It & The Powers That Be Actually Listened
While of course you can find your forever love at a young age, however, the franchise doesn't love to cast a young lead (Hannah Brown was the franchise's youngest lead ever at 23) and this particular group of contestants skewed to lower twenties. There was only one contestant in her 30s. Perhaps the outcry from fans inspired ABC to look for an older and theoretically more mature person to take on the Bachelorette mantle. Back in February, Rob Mills, ABC's Senior Vice President of Alternative Series, Specials & Late-Night Programming, spoke with Entertainment Tonight on the issue of age, admitting that he understands why fans were disappointed with the younger group this season and hope to see a change in the future.
The producers heard our complaints about the bachelor contestants being too young #TheBachelor pic.twitter.com/o3NkDO9ZqN— Kelsey (@KelseyAnn7996) February 25, 2020
“You see a lot of people talking about the age of contestants,” he stated. “I think that’s something we’d probably look at and say, ‘Does it need to be aged up? Are these girls ready?’” Given that Clare is 38 years old, making her the oldest Bachelorette in the show’s history, that could be the network’s olive branch to fans, indicating that they are being heard.
Clare Honestly Deserves It
If you don't remember, Clare is the one who gave renowned Bachelor jerk Juan Pablo Galavis a piece of her mind on The Bachelor. After that, she went on Bachelor in Paradise, where the producers edited video of racoons into her conversations with on-set producers to make it look like she was losing her mind and talking to animals on the island. Not cool.
Lastly, she went on The Bachelor Winter Games where, after some similar nonsense with a fellow contestant named Christian, she got engaged. That didn't work out (they're still friends), but this woman has been through the ringer. Giving her a shot at love is only fair at this point.
Whatever the official reason for the switch is, this move should make for a nice change of pace.