Reader Emails

“Reader Emails,” Ratings, & Your “Bachelorette” Filming Location Confirmed

Photo Credit: ABC

Last night was one of the longest IG lives that Ashley and I have done since we started doing this back in May. Unfortunately, another glitch with IG and it didn’t save. Not sure what happened. It ended like all other IG lives have ended. Once you click end, it asks if you want to save to IGTV, I say yes, and then it does. Last night when I clicked end, the screen basically froze and never brought me to the “Would you like to save to IG” page. I tweeted out a pic of what my screen looked like. This is only the second time since May I believe that it didn’t record, so I wouldn’t call this a major problem. Sometimes IG just acts up. I don’t think this will be an ongoing problem. If it starts to happen more often than not, then maybe we’ll look into doing it on a different platform. It’s unfortunate what happened last night, since it was loaded with a lot of good info. I’ll try and cover the basics today before I get to “Reader Emails,” which is our largest batch of the season. Close to 50 emails today and I didn’t get to some that were sent in. You guys have a lot of opinions this week, which is great. Thanks for chiming in. A lot of good thoughts this week that you have about the season.

Yesterday I reported exclusively that the “Bachelorette” would be filming in Canada, but I didn’t know the resort yet. Within 30 minutes of my post going up, got a tip about it possibly being at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, and I tweeted that out. Within a few hours of that, this story ran in Canada, which confirmed the tip I was sent was correct. So yes, it will be filmed there starting in March. Crew will leave towards the end of February (that article says the resort is closed from Feb. 23rd to April 29th), so it makes sense. The crew will be there for about a week, and the men will start being flown out the first week of March and quarantine for 2 weeks before filming begins mid March.

One popular take yesterday was, “Well, since they’re filming in Canada, does that mean we’ll have a Canadian ‘Bachelorette’?” No. One has nothing to do with the other. Nor does it mean we’re all the sudden gonna have half the cast of men being Canadian either. This is still the US Bachelorette. I don’t think it’s gonna be Serena P., which means the lead will be from here. So why would they all the sudden cast a bunch of Canadian men for a woman in the US, especially during a pandemic? Don’t get the two of them confused. They have nothing to do with each other.

But as I mentioned last night, I think we can now rule out Michelle as next “Bachelorette” because the crew and the lead will be there end of February. Which means the “Bachelorette” announcement will no doubt come before they leave. So how can you announce Michelle as the “Bachelorette” 2-3 weeks before the finale airs? Once you get to the finale and Rachael and Michelle are the final two, you’ve eliminated all your suspense. Yes, I know they announced Nick before his BIP finale with Jen aired, but c’mon, that was a summer fling. Rachel was announced early before she’d been eliminated, but she finished third. The show is not going to give away their finale on purpose before it airs. No chance.

I know people want to know who the next “Bachelorette” is, but I haven’t heard anything. I haven’t heard if they’ve even started interviewing women. All we do know from Robert Mills is it will be someone from the franchise. Doesn’t guarantee it’ll be one of Matt’s girls, doesn’t mean it won’t. We just don’t know enough yet. I gotta believe Bri, Abigail, and Katie are certainly contenders from this season, but I have no idea if they’ve started talking to them. Then you can never rule out someone from a past season, whoever that may be. As I hear things I’ll let you know.

Ratings are in from Monday night, and you know how everyone was fed up with how the girls acted? Yeah, didn’t reflect in the ratings as it was the highest rated episode of the season with 5 million viewers and a 1.4 rating. The premiere was the previously highest rated episode of the season with 5 million viewers and a 1.2 rating. So I expect small growths the rest of the way up to the finale. Comparing the finale to the premiere is the best way to determine HOW successful the season was. We’ve seen some major growths from episode 1 to the finale quite a few times. Lets see how much Matt eventually does.

Lets get right to it. Biggest “Reader Emails” of the season begins now…
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Hi Steve,

Have really been enjoying the pods and columns… thanks for all your work and updates during trickier seasons!

You’ve said it in the last few podcast episodes that there’s a lot of nuance and grey areas in some of these more contentious topics and interviews. Putting it all together, I guess I have more comments than questions.

Re: Evan’s ex. Good interview. My only issue was when she commented that Carly shouldn’t be feeling sad or lonely, because she was the one who broke things off with Evan. I haven’t seen this post of Carly’s, but she is still allowed (and it is still reasonable) to feel lonely/sad, even if she’s the one who ended things. I don’t remember Marie’s exact wordings, but if she said that, I missed it. And if she said that, yeah, that’s a bit extreme. Carly is still allowed to feel sad even if it was her that chose to move out.

Re: Tayshia’s ex. I agree with you, that he should be allowed to tell his side of things, when she had a major platform to tell hers. It also holds a little more water that he did an interview with you, rather than going to a tabloid who’d pay him, which he probably could have done. On Olivia’s pod, you said you didn’t think Tayshia should’ve said her ex cheated on national TV, ostensibly because to you, “there was infidelity” sounds like an ongoing affair rather than a one-time thing that he confessed to right away. However, I agree with what Olivia said on her pod, that Tayshia wouldn’t have said he cheated if he hadn’t cheated. Totally true, plus it’s her experience. Maybe I’m ignorant, but what is the major/long-term fallout on her ex due to her saying that? I also agree with what Brett said to you, that perhaps you could just let the interview speak for itself, rather than immediately siding with him and defending him. It’s sometimes like you feel that the person who’s on the show is wrong (“there for the wrong reasons”, there’s more to the story than we see), and the person who talks to you is honest and right. There’s more to every side of every story than we see, and people can feel multiple conflicting things at the same time. As a young divorcee, like Tayshia and Carly, I speak to those grey areas from experience. I try to do the best I can in a situation like that. I didn’t feel like I sided with him, but if people feel that way, I guess there’s nothing I can say to change their mind. It is a difficult position to be in, because when they tell their side, if I dismiss them, then it’d be considered being rude to my guest. If I agree with them or expand on certain points, then I must be agreeing with them. And then if I just do question-answer-question-answer-question-answer with no follow up or no conversation, the interview just sucks, has no flow, and just sounds robotic.

I also thought the question about Bachelor Mount Rushmore was a good one, and would like to know (besides Harrison), your final list.

Finally, I love the music on your pod and laugh out loud every time you end it with “SEE YA!”

Comment: Was Chris the only one on Rushmore I listed thus far? I’ve already forgot. I think besides him, it’s impossible to name 3 others that immediately when you think of this franchise you think of them. There’s too many people. And what’s the criteria? Popularity? IG followers? Most times appeared? Most post show success?
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I love how you support women….Ashley Spivey and Clare, for example. I can’t understand why she gets so much hate. I am sad things didn’t work out for her and Dale. And I blame him LOL. I hope she finds somebody worthy. What are the odds he ends up on BIP?

Comment: As I said on the IG live last night that unfortunately never saved because IG has become hit-or-miss now, I suspect Dale thinks he’s above that show. And the only person who ever went on BIP that was a previous “winner” or former lead, was Josh Murray. Nick did, but that was before he was a lead. I think “winners” and or lead feel they’ve already been to the “top of the mountain” so to speak with this show, and just going on, lets face it, the lower end version of this dating franchise, is a step down.
_______________________

Hi Steve,

Thanks as always for the hard work this season. I personally don’t mind not having an episode by episode breakdown, or firm spoilers. Of course I enjoy them when you have them, but I mainly come for your recaps and commentary. Without that, I most likely would have stopped watching the show years ago (and I stumbled across your site during Jake Pavelka’s season).

I’m not sure if I’m going to make today’s reader emails post, but I was late watching your live with Ashley. I’m writing about the commentary surrounding the idea of only dating to marry. I *think* I understand what Matt/people who agree with that sentiment are trying to say because in my twenties I had said something similar. In my experience, what I meant was that if I’m dating someone, I’m thinking about the relationship in the standpoint of could this lead to marriage, and I didn’t want to have a 5 year dating relationship without an engagement or moving in together. Of course I started any relationship “casually dating,” meaning one date didn’t make a relationship and since I did online dating, I was occasionally dating multiple people at once. That verbiage didn’t change how I dated or how many people I dated, but more that the intention was to be in a relationship that led to marriage and not stop at a long term we’re enjoying this status quo. Clearly I can’t speak for Matt, but that was my thought process 10 or so years ago.

Thanks!

Comment: I see what you’re saying. That’s just not what I interpreted as to what Matt’s saying. But IF that’s what he was saying with the words he used, then yeah, I get that. But that wasn’t the impression he gave off to me.
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Hi! I’m new-ish to reality TV, I was wondering if you could explain the process to me of someone getting a “bad edit”? I understand producers can pick and chose clips of what to be seen, but is the context of what one is actually saying manipulated? Wouldn’t that be illegal to change what someone is actually saying? Maybe I’m naïve. Not sure. Do you have any good examples?

Thanks!

Comment: The examples are endless over 41 seasons. All you need to know though is it’s not illegal because it states right in their contract the show can do whatever they want to your character. No joke. Like it literally says they can lie, surprise you, defame your character in any way they want and you have no legal recourse.
_______________________

Hey Steve,

First I’d like to thank you for introducing me to the Game of Roses Podcast. I’m loving it and have gotten a few friends hooked as well. I’ve started watching the show from a game and player viewpoint now and it’s much more enjoyable.

Anyway, one of my favorite Survivor players was on this season of The Challenge, Natalie. (She was also on The Amazing Race.) As I know you know, she had to leave due to finding out she was pregnant and then had a miscarriage at some point after arriving home. I’d been meaning to e-mail you when the cast list came out for this season on how she could be a really interesting podcast guest, having the Survivor and Challenge perspective. After suffering the loss of a pregnancy in such a public way, I don’t know how much she is wanting to do media interviews, but just a thought.

I’m also loving the format of The Challenge this season. It’s hard to say who I think/want to win since the partners can still change.

Thanks again for all that you do!

Comment: I’d love to talk to Natalie at some point.

Looks like you’re in luck this week, because if everything goes as planned, supposed to be recording with a Challenge competitor today for tomorrow’s podcast. Don’t wanna jinx it.
_______________________

Hey Steve!

Two questions:

1. Are leads allowed to ever comment on their season while it is showing? It seems like in hindsight when they see what really goes down, they may have opinions on it. Has that ever happened where someone did comment on a contestant or drama after an episode airs? Oh yeah, has happened plenty of times. And usually they stay out of it (especially when it comes to the controversial ones), by saying, “I didn’t see what you guys saw.” Which is true, but definitely an easy out for them.

2. Ever since Clare’s season and her episode of putting Jason through a therapy session, it seems like these past few seasons are really about who has the biggest backstory to stay on the show. Is this normal?

Thanks!

Comment: It’s becoming a thing for sure. They’ve always kinda been there in the past, but they really seem to be leaning into it more now.
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Hi Steve,

I understand that you don’t keep up with contestants after the finale rose. Just curious though – as you have had Clare on your podcast several times before (I believe twice ??) is she/was she someone you did keep
In contact with or not so much when she was chosen as bachelorette?

Comment: It’s been almost 4 years since Clare was on my podcast. We kept in touch way more closer to those podcasts back in 2017. We haven’t kept in touch much at all since.
_______________________

Hey Steve,

Long time reader …. I was wondering if you have heard anything about Kaityln and Jason they have been very silent on social media with each other and they usually can’t stop filling out screens on social media.

Thank you for all your spoilers 🙂

Comment: Didn’t they both get COVID? Maybe they’re just keeping a lower profile bc they’re sick. I don’t know. I don’t follow either of them.
_______________________

Hi Steve,

Long time reader/listener but first time reaching out. I do have several questions but if just one were picked, that would be great as well.

1. How do we hold contestants accountable or do we even want to? When some controversy comes up and they want to play it to their narrative but it clearly isn’t the truth, it just gets too frustrating and wish at times we could cut in and speak up. For example, Victoria Fuller. From what I remember, you did so much research and asked so many sources, there was no doubt about her past (and on more than one occasion) but she lied through her teeth when asked and no body pressed her on it. Did she admit to it and I missed it? Or we just dropped it? There were other scenarios but this was the easiest that came to mind. Nope. Just lost steam. There’s only so much I can do. But I think Victoria knew it would go away eventually because she knew the women in question wouldn’t come forward publicly with receipts. And in this day and age, unfortunately, things tend to be believed less when accusations like that come out and the other people in question don’t give an interview themselves, and/or present proof/evidence/receipts.

2. Who is your all time favorite bachelor and bachelorette? And same for male contestant and female contestant. I liked Ashley and Becca’s seasons. Ben Higgins for the men. Contestant? Too many to name.

3. What happened between Raven and Rachel? Raven still maintains that she doesn’t even know but they are just NOT best friends anymore? Crazy. Not my story to tell. And I only know what I was told. I have no idea if it’s even true, so there’s no point in sharing it.

4. I know this wasn’t part of the show or something you cover but do you know what happened with the Mike Fleiss drama? I know they dropped it, but did they have the baby? Did he have to pay any consequences for his actions or did it just get dropped? It’s not exactly part of the show but those were huge allegations regardless and makes me wonder about the shows and type of channels I watch. No idea. Once settlement money is involved, good luck ever getting the real truth to what happened.

5. I am embarrassed to say but with covid, crazy politics and distance learning in kinder, my schedule has been crazy and hasn’t allowed too much time to myself to listen to podcasts. Did you happen to mention the thing you were aware of a while back but because it hadn’t broke, you were keeping quiet? I have always been curious but never asked since you said you would say when it did. Haha, jokes on me. I can’t hear it if I don’t listen. That Carly had moved out an gotten her own place at least 6 months before they had their second baby. This was addressed in the podcast with Marie, Evan’s ex-wife. You must’ve missed that one.

6. How cool and enjoyable would it be to watch a combination of big brother and bachelor in paradise. Like the bachelor pad but legit on big brother. Everything and everyone being watched, games being played and alliances made! I feel like there have been more couples come from big brother than we have the bachelor or bachelorette. Could this help make the change?!? I am so here for it but between you and kat, could you please make that happen?!? Obviously this one isn’t super serious, unless you can, then hell yeah! But it was an idea I had but no one to share it with. ??

I have plenty more questions but I thought I would save them for next week.

Comment: I have zero interest in being on reality TV. Not my thing. They wouldn’t ask, and I’d never do it. But Kat? Yeah, she’d totally be down for something like that.
_______________________

Hi Steve,

I’ve been reading for years and love your realistic view! I have never really felt the need to write in because any questions I would have you’ve already answered, especially when it comes to how production works!

During the Clare/Tayshia season I did find myself asking what kind mental health specialist (psychiatrist, psychologist, counselor) is on the other side. I know you’ve touched on it but if you have any more details I’m very interested. 2019 wasn’t that long ago for an attempted suicide.

Whereas zac i very much admire his 9 years sober because it is a huge deal. I was skeptical having lost a spouse to addiction, Tayshia needs to know his sobriety should always come first. It doesn’t seem like an issue now and as i said 9 years is significant but its a bigger commitment than marriage to commit to sobriety. I really hope it works, but a lot of it bothers me because you really can’t understand addiction unless its personally affected you. He needs to use his Bach platform to help addicts on a broader scale.

Comment: Everything that Zac has done post show in regards to his addiction and recovery has been to help promote awareness. Went on Jacqueline Trumbull’s podcast last week and was very open and honest. If you haven’t heard that, check that out on her “A Little Help For Our Friends” podcast. Every interview I’ve heard him do the guy doesn’t back down from anything in talking about his past addiction or anything to do with his recovery. Stand up dude.

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. angelfish

    January 27, 2021 at 11:34 AM

    I don’t care what anybody says, vows, heard, intuits or believes:
    Matt was cast because he’s black.
    Period.

  2. crushonspivey

    January 27, 2021 at 3:09 PM

    You’re probably right. But I have no problem with it. He’s a good lead. Better than many the show has produced from Bachette rejects.

  3. angelfish

    January 27, 2021 at 5:28 PM

    Sadly, I think he is the least charismatic, the least attractive, and the least watchable bachelor they’ve ever had. He’s an African-American placeholder, being used to satisfy a racial requirement the network finds itself at the mercy of.

    Lucky Matt at least gets some cash from the gig. Not an actual job or any self-respect, but he’ll have some pocket change for when he & Tyler hit the clubs. Good thing he won’t need to keep that pesky “fiancée” for long.

  4. ladyjane747

    January 28, 2021 at 8:49 AM

    A few comments from the reader emails. I’m an author and there are many “best seller” lists. I call myself a “bestselling author” because I’ve made the Publishers Weekly Bestseller list in mass market paperback. Any author who has made a bestseller list is going to use it. If you are a New York Times bestselling author, you’re going to specifically put “NYT bestselling author” in front of your name, but know the NYT list is also manipulated and not based solely on sales. Also, to call Rachael a racist is ludicrous. No racist is going to go on a dating show to date a black guy, and then get engaged to him. And to the person who wants Bachelor contestants “held accountable” for lying or whatever – sheesh! What would you like, the firing squad? People take this show much too seriously. And, yeah, most of us don’t really want to see current or political topics discussed on the show. Politics has invaded everything – just leave some mindless entertainment for us to enjoy! For those who want to see an all black cast (no diversity there at all), there are a couple of dating shows on OWN.

  5. justsaying

    January 28, 2021 at 9:21 AM

    Bri, Abigail and Katie, any one of them will be awesome. Quality, quality women. Hip hip hooray!!

  6. dogmomma

    January 28, 2021 at 2:11 PM

    ladyjane747, I agree with you!!! I don’t want to see or hear about politics on this show because I watch for entertainment and not to debate on political matters. What is surprising to me is how people automatically make judgement calls on someone based on what they did in high school or what they “liked” on Instagram. OMG, seriously??? Are we not allowed to make mistakes or bad judgements during our life? Garrett Y was practically crucified because of some things he “liked” on Instagram years earlier. And I see people criticizing Rachel for things she did years ago (allegedly). None of us are perfect and not everyone has the same political views. So I wish people would calm down and just enjoy the show for what it is….. mindless, sometimes trashy entertainment.

  7. idontcare

    January 28, 2021 at 10:46 PM

    I have to agree with you. I was excited to watch Matt’s season but now, it is just a snooze fest. I can also now understand why they choose leads from previous seasons. They already know enough about the person to get a feel for what their season will look like. Matt is not the best looking. He is rather dry and lackluster. I feel like he’s in it for the money which I don’t have a problem with. But all in all, they picked him solely bc he is black and they needed to appear woke. I wish him well.

  8. idontcare

    January 28, 2021 at 10:51 PM

    He is an okay lead but I feel like he’s trying too hard to look perfect or be someone he thinks tptb want from him. The one thing he does that kinda creeps me is the couple fingers on the girls chin thing when he’s kissing them.

  9. ladyjane747

    January 29, 2021 at 12:09 PM

    Thing is, if they wanted a black, male lead, there were plenty of other black contestants from previous seasons (including Tayshia’s) who were better looking and more dynamic than Matt. It’s almost like if they couldn’t have Tyler, they’d settle for his best friend. And don’t get me started on the hate Garrett got for supporting the police. When did supporting the police become political or a bad thing? I’m glad he didn’t back down, and it seems as if that cost him his relationship with Becca. If appearing woke is more important to you than your relationships, you have a problem.

  10. chasus

    January 29, 2021 at 6:01 PM

    I just want to say the entire thing on Rachel is just so dang loose and why did the accuser not choose to state this well before the season aired when they released the contestant photos? again forgive me if I too find this suspicious. What gets me is that people are so quick to believe a tik tocker who they know nothing about over someone who has made it on the show. we dont know either of these folks and yet people already clamping on against Rachael calling her a racist over this. When the tik tok girl first posted all of this I saw the comments of people even exposing her as a bully herself, she even deleted those comments and locked the videos. Yet people are jumping on this bandwagon of calling someone a racists with little to no evidence that would not even hold up in a court of law. I dont care if there are so called private messages to the tik tok original poster stating that Rachel was a mean girl. Being a mean girl and racist are 2 different things, IMHO. That is so bold to call someone a racist and when you get a chance to actually verbally state it was her who said these comments, all I get from the 5 tik tok videos was “the friend group” “the Friend group” To me why is this lady not willing to verbally say that it was specifically Rachael in those videos who called her racists things? It all stinks to me especially on something that happened in high school nearly 9 years ago. No it doesn’t excuse the behavior if true, but I assure you we all can remember how we acted at 16/17 compared to when we are 24/25. Also I have experienced racism and have encountered racists’ and let me say they would never step foot on any show let alone in any space with a person of color without seething through their teeth. You best believe they would not even touch a person of color nor be kissing on them for all their Klansman to see.

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