The Bachelor 25 - Matt

The “Bachelor” Matt – A Breakdown of the Last Week in Bachelor Nation, Chris Harrion, & What Happens Now?

Photo Credit: ABC

Now let’s look at the Chris Harrison side of things. First off, if you still can watch his interview on “Extra” and think, “What’s the big deal?,” frankly you might wanna read a book. Or use Google. Because there were so many things wrong with that interview that, geez, I feel it’s been driven into our heads. The @theblckchelorettes video last week summed up exactly why Chris completely missed the boat with his opinion. Please take the time to watch this. And if you’re immediate reaction is, “Ugh I don’t need a black woman explaining anything to me and lecturing me on this,” – you’re racist. Period. No if’s and’s or but’s.

There are others out there who explained it well too. Taylor Nolan (this weeks podcast guest) did an excellent job. Sharleen Joynt in her recap from last week did as well. So many options out there that I hope you take the time to read.

But I want to move past that part since we’ve had almost a week to dissect WHAT Chris said. One thing that really hurt Chris, you know, besides the 13 straight minutes of ignorance, was the fact that when Rachel did her “Higher Learning” podcast with Van Lathan on Thursday and gave her first opinion on the interview, she said she wasn’t thrilled with Chris’ apology because he texted her afterwards and never mentioned anything about “Oh I shouldn’t have said that.” He clearly felt that interview was fine and nothing he said he’d be called out for. So let’s be real, Chris’ first apology last Wednesday was horseshit. He said for 13 minutes what he believed. That’s what he thought. And in his mind, his beliefs weren’t racist or problematic in any way. And he proved that by texting Rachel after the fact and not mentioning anything. So to then 24 hrs later apologize, yeah, very insincere and he was only apologizing because people were coming for his head. Not because he actually believed what he said was wrong, ignorant, racist, tone deaf, and however else you want to describe it.

Not to mention that apology itself was made even WORSE the next day when Rachael comes in and says that, “Yeah, what I did was racist and there’s no excuse.” Yet here’s Chris the day before saying “Eh it looked to me like it was a girl in a dress at a party.” Good Lord that interview was bad. Anyway, once Rachael’s apology came, someone half his age sounding 10x better, I had a feeling Chris was in trouble. Even tweeted on Friday that I didn’t know what was gonna happen to him, but don’t be surprised if he was fired because there was a precedent for it. Hell, Megyn Kelly got fired from her TV show for one “blackface as a Halloween costume” comment. Chris did 13 straight minutes showing his ass on ignorant and racist beliefs, all while essentially telling a black woman how she should be feeling. Not to mention the passive aggressive “I don’t know Rachel, what is the right thing here” BS, which is basically him telling you EXACTLY how he feels about the situation (which was he didn’t think it was a big deal) but deflecting it into the interviewer like it’s somehow her issue. So once Rachael’s apology came, then men from Tayshia’s season and women from Matt’s season were putting out statements on their IG standing in solidarity with each other and denouncing racism in the franchise, including from its “leader” and host, I knew Chris was in serious trouble.

So on Saturday Chris releases this statement:

In it, he says he’ll be “stepping aside for a period of time,” and the one show he mentions specifically he won’t be a part of is the ATFR, which tapes in a couple weeks. Well, that’s a start. But assuming “Bachelorette” is still going on as planned, that begins filming in a month. Do we really think Chris can be remotely rehabbed and will have learned his lesson in a month? No chance. He AT LEAST needs to sit out one full season. And even that probably isn’t enough. @BachDiversity is running with this campaign right now, and really, it’s tough to argue with:

Rachel essentially said the same thing when she went on CNN last night with Don Lemon:

How do you bring the face of this franchise back when you know these were his core beliefs and this show needs major change? You know where the first major change would start? At the top. And that’s Chris’ job. Also, this isn’t “I can’t believe they’d fire him for one mistake.” First, it was a 13 minute interview, not a one sentence slap on the wrist. And secondly, there’s been plenty of other problematic things Chris has said in the past that, while people have pointed out at the time, never got the coverage this is getting. And let’s just say they DO decide to bring him back. What does that look like? What does their statement say? What will Chris have to show/prove that he’s taken the necessary steps to improve upon for the right to earn his job back? That’s why someone from the network needs to speak out and soon.

Chris Harrison, while no doubt the face of this franchise, can be replaced. What he does on the show is not an integral part of this machine that’s been streaming down the tracks for the last 18 years and 41 seasons. While it’ll look different, and maybe some people will be pissed off enough to never watch again, it IS manageable to do without him and replacing him with someone else. Who that person may be? We don’t know. Could be someone from the franchise, might not. However for the time being, the ATFR should absolutely be hosted by Rachel Lindsay. That’s a no brainer, and if she doesn’t want to do it, then get Tayshia or Mike Johnson. Yes, it should be hosted by a POC due to the nature of where we’re at this season with this particular storyline. You know what else I’d like to see at the ATFR? A POC round table discussion on race, Chris Harrison, and this show. Why not? All black contestants, while I’m sure they’re tired of explaining it, on stage for a national audience to see them tell America why they feel neglected in this franchise. And why they were so hurt by what Chris said. It’d be one of the most powerful things this show could do, not to mention, a step in the right direction to say to the audience, “Hey, we’re trying to be more transparent and have open and honest discussions about race.” Rachel Lindsay moderating a panel of POC like Taylor Nolan, Mike Johnson, Eric Bigger, Natasha Parker, etc. You name anyone you’d like to be a part of it. The point being it’s ALL POC, and they tell America exactly why they feel the way they do. Will the show do it? Probably not. And THAT’S why this show has identity crisis right now. They are in serious trouble if they don’t steer this ship in the right direction. I just gave them a small GPS to at least get them on course.

Send all links and emails to: steve@realitysteve.com. To follow me on Twitter, it’s: www.twitter.com/RealitySteve. Instagram name is RealitySteve, or join my Reality Steve Facebook Fan Page. Talk to you tomorrow.

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. feck

    February 16, 2021 at 11:19 AM

    Being a person of color, I don’t find any wrong with what Chris said. And I don’t really care about what someone said in their past let alone highschool/young adult life. Also being a POC as ppl call us, the biggest racists I know personally are other poc’s. This whole situation is stupid and dumb.

  2. feck

    February 16, 2021 at 11:20 AM

    Steve you sound Racist AF, you associate POC with Black only it seems.

  3. mgb970

    February 16, 2021 at 11:37 AM

    Ironic that Chris was asking folks to cool their jets before they tried Rachael in the court of public opinion… and it blew up into this. Yes, Chris said some stupid stuff like looking at 2018 vis-a-vis 2021.

    But I guess, in 2021 no less, we cannot have a rational conversation without the professionally outraged leveraging scenarios to keep themselves relevant.

    Rachel and Becca sure have turned into mean girls.

    You know what, I had to Google, “Antebellum party”… I honesty had no idea what that even meant. I guess in 2021 America, that makes me a racist too?

  4. crushonspivey

    February 16, 2021 at 12:04 PM

    Harrison came across really poorly in the interview. He was rude honestly. I had a problem with him talking over Rachel mostly and not listening as well as he could. He was more interested in making his point to basically defend Racheal than to listen and even to concede points. But he made a valid point about people needing to give Rachael a chance. The point still stands. But now for him as well.

    But this ridiculousness to get him fired from his job? I’m not down with that, and that is where BachDiversity lost me. They are using this show to further their cause and platform politically, and don’t care who they take down to do it. To me, that is destructive behavior and I am not ok with that “ends justifies the means” tactics.

    Also, who are they? Who are the people behind that Insta page, and Change.org petition? Now that they have called for the firing of an individual, show yourselves. It is one thing to advocate for a TV show to makes changes (which I agree with–and man, does this show thrive on misogyny this year perpetuated by the producers), it is another entirely to now try to get someone fired. So it is time for them to come forward and be known. No more anonymity for them, if they really care for that cause. Now step up and face the charge personally.

    I really like Matt as a lead. Some say he is boring, but I think he is a gentleman. He has handled things well, especially during a season when the woman on woman fights and cattiness has been super high, and clearly ratcheted higher by uncaring producers (mostly women behind the scenes). It’s been pathetic. Last night episode–again–had some nastiness. I really do hope he has a success story, but based on how this season has gone, how this show is produced and the narratives they push for, the leads have almost no shot.

  5. jordanav

    February 16, 2021 at 12:24 PM

    Haha, two non-black people commenting on this post to let you know their opinion. This is why this show pissed me off. They cater to this audience. The “but Chris did nothing wrong” crowd who are also the kind of people who pretend to be POC on the internet. Disgusting. Chris did everything wrong. As an actual black person I can tell you that is being an audience member is this stressful I can’t even imagine what being a black contestant must feel like. A bunch of people pissed at you for saying the confederacy and it’s defenders are bad. Just awful.

  6. jordanav

    February 16, 2021 at 12:27 PM

    Lol if you aren’t black why are you commenting about whether or not racism regarding the confederate flag and slave plantations personally affects you?

    Sincerely,

    An actual black person who is upset with Chris Harrison.

  7. elizabeth82

    February 16, 2021 at 1:49 PM

    New Englander here, but I’m confused why Texans are all losing power if as Steve says, he got only four inches of snow?

    Steve: please explain why you think Katie would no longer be The Bachelorette?

    Re the CH interview, the normalizing he did of the Old South Antebellum parties as something that was widespread in 2018–I guess he didn’t hear about how frats had been banned from doing that but went ahead and continued the tradition anyway.

  8. justsaying

    February 16, 2021 at 3:05 PM

    I thought Matt was COLD towards Abigail. The nerve of him to ask her what’s wrong and why was she’s upset when they first sat down. Only to dump her a few sentences later. Eeek! Thumbs down!!

  9. mgb970

    February 16, 2021 at 4:44 PM

    @jordanav

    > The “but Chris did nothing wrong”

    Nobody in here wrote that.

    > Lol if you aren’t black why are you commenting about
    > whether or not racism regarding the confederate flag
    > and slave plantations personally affects you?

    1. Nobody mentioned the confederate flag.

    2. Nobody is pro-slave plantation.

    3. People who aren’t black also have a right to comment.

    Your reading comprehension sucks.

    Sincerely,

    Every literate American regardless of skin color

  10. mgb970

    February 16, 2021 at 4:47 PM

    > New Englander here, but I’m confused why Texans are all
    > losing power if as Steve says, he got only four inches
    > of snow?

    Because a bunch of wind turbines froze up in the extreme clod and couldn’t spin. That’s 20% of Texas’ power. The grid cannot cope with increased demand in the face of 1/5th less capacity. So there are rolling blackouts to compensate and keep the grid from crashing.

  11. kayakguy

    February 16, 2021 at 4:59 PM

    There sure are a lot of angry people out there. You are ruining the fun of watching one of the dumbest shows on television. No way would I want to watch Rachel host the “after” show in place of a Chris. He is the only reason why I watch it in the first place— love seeing him navigate and corral the bitter women dumped by the bachelor.

  12. fishbelt

    February 16, 2021 at 8:02 PM

    Well, after all these years, Steve finally got his wish. I hope he’s happy with Chris’ downfall. Public opinion, on other websites, is stoically behind Chris. As the Bachelor goes, so goes this website. It will be reduced to podcasts that no one listens to. ABC will now ruin the Bachelor franchise just like they did with DWTS.

  13. rob22

    February 17, 2021 at 6:44 AM

    I agree largely with @crushonspivey. I’d probably take it a little farther in that it’s pretty shocking that a face of the franchise guy like Chris would even do an interview like that. I honestly don’t know what he was thinking. And although I hate it when people come out with the pitchforks after people’s careers, Chris did that to himself & didn’t seem to get it enough to come up with a real apology. Also, unlike Rachael, he’s not 24 years old. Living in GA, I think those antebellum parties are horrible. And it’s hardly a secret that they’re controversial. And, I also see where younger kids don’t necessarily get it. I have two of my own, and I cannot swear that they never went to a similar party with their frats. (I don’t know, but they are pretty common, so it wouldn’t be a massive shock if they did). So I get what Rachael did. But Chris, you’re on your own buddy.

  14. jlyoung

    February 17, 2021 at 7:12 AM

    Hi Steve. I’ll probably continue to come to this site because the Bachelor series is unwatchable without the spoilers. I’ll hate myself for doing it the whole time. YOU don’t get to tell me I’m a racist “no if’s and’s or but’s.” Who are you? Wow. People are allowed to have an opinion. Yes, some opinions are blatantly racist but most perspectives don’t need any particular label from you…or anyone. Your “labeling” is what keeps divisions going. You are a huge part of the problem. Since we’re in the spirit of labeling…mine for you is ARROGANT!

  15. bachfan02

    February 17, 2021 at 9:47 PM

    WOW!!! Loving the screen time data you posted. Thank you, Steve! I’d missed it. Just confirmed what I already knew. I’ve been writing/saying for a while now producers gave Katie the best edit. It’s like they’d already decided she would be the next Bachelorette. Not one of Matt’s final four or any of the BIPOC women. So infuriating on a season that had cast so many. So they played up Katie’s parts. Of course fans are gonna want her. They feel they know her. Meanwhile, there were others, some of Matt’s ACTUAL frontrunners who didn’t get nearly as much time or attention. Who is to say one of them didn’t speak out against the bullying or say it wasn’t cool? Maybe they did or said other things that might have endeared them to the audience, but maybe it didn’t make the cut. And I’d already noticed the IG following growth disparity. As for Chris H., he put his foot in it. And he handled it like he had something to get off his chest, and he was disrespectful to Rachel Lindsay. He only has himself to blame for his “break” by making more of a mess of the situation. He’s supposed to be a pro. He could’ve said let’s wait and see what Racheal K. has to say about it all. And left it at that. Instead he went off the rails.

  16. shellylite

    February 20, 2021 at 12:00 AM

    Way too much has been made of all of this. Probably 90% of America doesn’t care about this or this show at all. People have it on in the background of their lives and don’t pay that much attention to it. Yes Chris Harrison is annoying and sexist AF. I guess he’s racist now too and he may very well be, in part because he was trying his hardest to defend the woman who probably already won this season. He was probably trying to save the show. But Ms. Lindsey seems hell-bent on destroying this show, the host of the show, the relationships the contestants have with people who don’t live up to her standards (Garrett, who was always a jerk, but still, Becca picked him) and honestly who cares. This show has been a sexist problem since the beginning. I could write 20 pages on how it’s disgustingly sexist, but no one cares. All anyone cares about lately, seemingly, is what Rachel Lindsay thinks of everything and every one. And why is she famous again? Oh yeah, because Chris Harrison made her famous.

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