Reader Emails

“Reader Emails,” Ratings, Mike Johnson Speaks, & When is the Next IG Live?

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1. Do you have any idea why Matt went from saying he was down to “get on one knee and propose” to not actually proposing? I wonder if that was his plan all along and he just told producers what they wanted to hear. It’s very possible.

2. Is it true filming for Matt’s season – from start to finish – was only 6 weeks? Isn’t it usually 9 or 10? It was. Oct. 10th thru around Nov. 22nd-23rd. Normal filming is 7-8 weeks, pre-COVID.

3. Any idea how Matt and Rachael are doing, lol?

Comment: They are still together.
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First time emailing you.

Let’s start here, I am against racism of any kind. What I don’t like is everyone slamming Chris Harrison like he murdered someone. We ALL MAKE MISTAKES!

I agree he needs to step away and get educated. But to be fired is taking it too far. Everyone deserves a second chance. A mistake is leaving your keys in your car. This was a belief system rooted in racism. That wasn’t a “mistake.” Sorry you can’t see that. And if they deem that necessary to lose your job, then so be it. People have been fired in the media for a lot less.

I also want to know why the bullying didn’t get more attention? Do you know how many people commit suicide because they were bullied. Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death in young people as a result of being bullied.

There needs to be some major changes in the bachelor franchise. And not all of the changes relate to racism. I did not see, at least on TV, one girl during this season get called out or picked on because of their race. But to show the bullying on television was a bad call on the franchise. There are young girls who watch this and will think this is ok.

I’m closing, let’s all be kind and respectful of each for we do not know what they are going through.

Comment: Ahhhh, the ol’ “lets just all be nice to each other” mantra. Which is exactly what someone says when they don’t want to have uncomfortable conversations regarding race. White. F’n. Privilege.
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Steve,

I watched The Bachelor last night after having listened to the Rachel Lindsay interview, the Rachel Lindsay podcast with her response, the @theblckchorettes live and the incredible live with Taylor Nolan and Mikayla from @theblckchorettes. Not many people have mentioned Taylor Nolan’s live where she played the whole Chris Harrison interview and dissected the subtext in it. I thought that particular live was fascinating because she and Mikayla were so articulate and courageous standing in their truth. It was truly inspiring to me, especially when they knew they were going to get a terrible backlash for saying what they did. I sent them and Rachel Lindsay supportive messages and I hope others who support them do the same for all of the people of color who have spoken out in the last week. They are getting awful backlash and they need and deserve our support. Taylor will be on the podcast tomorrow to talk about all that. Looking forward to it.

I also loved Sharleen’s blog. That woman can write! She really said it all.

I thought you laid it out clearly in your column today what the issues are and what some good first steps towards change will entail.

I was shocked to see your tweet about people who don’t want the show to change and respond to the concerns of people of color. It is hard to understand where they are coming from, but it does speak to our polarized society now in the United States. Their ignorance astounds me. It’s pathetic. And trust me, that’s a the majority voice in regards to what’s happening now.

I watched the show last night and it really bothered me every time Chris Harrison came on the screen now knowing how he feels about the people of color on the show. It does not feel like a safe environment for them.

For the people who are outraged that Chris Harrison has temporarily stepped aside and are talking about how horrible cancel culture is, I think they are missing the point. Chris apologized because he is scared of losing his job. But, he cannot wipe out a lifetime of beliefs with one apology. It is very clear what his beliefs are and no one changes their beliefs overnight. I am unclear if he really does want to change his beliefs, but if he truly does, it is a long process. These ingrained beliefs he grew up with are not something he can change, even if he wanted to, overnight. Correct. We really don’t know. We do know his first apology last Wednesday was bullshit. Rachel Lindsay’s podcast proved that. Saturday’s decision to step aside for a period of time? We’ll see if he’s serious about making changes in his life. But unless he publicly tells us what he’s doing, no, most people will think it’s bullshit. Just like Rachael is gonna need to as well, Chris will need to show/tell the audience what he’s doing to better himself. I’m not convinced he will.

There is also a decision the show needs to make. I read some of the 18,000 comments on Instagram under Chris Harrison’s apology. They have a huge fan base who don’t want the show to change. They want it to stay the white fantasy fairy tale romance that they can lose themselves in once a week. It will be very interesting to see how the show handles this. I hope they make the right decision and follow your advice.

My sister-in-law lives in Austin and she has been experiencing the same thing of her power going on and off. I am sorry you have to deal with this. It sounds so cold!!!

Hopefully Texas will get to the bottom of why this happened and correct this before next winter.

Thank you for your excellent reporting on everything that is going on. I hope you get your heat back on soon and I am looking forward to the live with you and Ashley whenever it is.

Comment: Well I haven’t had a power outage in over 12 hours, so I think I might be in the clear of that. Fingers crossed. So I would think Ashley and I will do our live tonight or tomorrow night. Stay tuned on my social media channels.
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Hey Steve!

A few host related questions for ya! If/when Chris Harrison or ABC decide to move on, who do you think would be host? Also who would you personally want to be host?

Something I’ve mentioned to my watch party group is doing a female host for the bachelorette and a male host for the bachelor, do you ever see a situation like that happening or do you think they’ll want to keep that singular voice?

Thanks!

Comment: I don’t see them choosing two hosts for two different shows. If Chris is done for good, I see them going with one host. Who that is, I really have no idea. This show has a lot of things to rethink with this franchise. Host is just one of them.
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Hi Steve

First off, hope your weather improves down in Dallas. We’re having a heck of a February here in CT too. 18 inches of snow last week, then storms every other day. NOT fun! And where I live (I call it “Seymour Mountain), the power goes out often and sometimes for days. So, I feel your pain!

RE: the Bachelor fiasco, I was SO glad to hear you call out ABC in today’s recap! All week, I’ve been reading nothing but bad stuff about Chris Harrison and his botched apology, and I kept asking myself, “Where the hell is ABC?” Did they send to the wolves – aka press – to make a sacrificial lamb out of him? He is NOT the network, nor is he the one who interviews and vets the prospective contestants. And I have a strong hunch that TPTB knew from the git-go about Rachael’s past and her social media racist posts. All summer they were boasting about their first Black Bachelor and I’m sure in their pea brains, they thought, “Gee, this will sure stir the pot!” I was wondering when they were going to go one step too far casting people with checkered pasts seeking drama. After reading Sharleen’s recap over the weekend I felt sick to my stomach and pretty much lost my desire to continue watching this season. Of course last night I broke down and started watching my DVR taping but when they got to the group date where Matt gave Rachael the rose and then went off to the private performance, I had to turn the TV off. Just can’t watch the relationship further developing between them now. But, my guess is that Matt was NOT truly looking to settle down and now he’s got a perfect excuse to kick her to the curb shortly down the line. I’m sure at the ATFR he’ll defend her, just like Becca did with Garret. Then he’ll bide his time and eventually dump (like he would’ve eventually anyway).

I can’t help but wonder if they’ve dug their graves this time. It will be interesting to see if the show can rebound. But I had the same thoughts as you did regarding the Bachelorette. IF they have a next Bach-ette season (which I agree with you it’s hanging int he balance now), I’m guessing it won’t be Katie. They’ll have to redeem themselves somehow. I could see either Abigail, Michele or Bri being named. I wish they could turn back the clock and go back to the early days when the show was more enjoyable. This season is a real train wreck…and really no stand-out love story unfolding. Yeah, it’s not looking like Katie anymore.

Thanks for all your diligence in staying on top of the ever-changing news. And for getting us a recap/update even though you’re in the midst of a huge winter storm!

Comment: I think a lot of people have your same sentiments in that second paragraph. While I don’t think the show purposely cast Rachael to cause this drama for reasons I explained earlier, I can see why people think they did.
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Hello Steve,

First thing first, I’m actually very proud of you. I’m glad that you took the time to educate yourself about this whole situation with Rachael K. When you announced that you and Ashley were going to discuss this on instagram live, I was very skeptical ,and I was ready to go on defense, but when I watched it, I was taken by surprise (in a good way). You covered everything beautifully and you saw from the BIPOC point of view and understood where we were coming from about Racheals racist past and why we wanted her to take accountability for her actions. You understood, and honestly I wish the rest of Bachelor Nation can take after you because people today are still defending her actions, and it’s even worse now after the interview with Chris and Rachel which was just so hard to watch. I felt bad for Rachel and I can’t imagine how upset she must’ve been after that. The only thing I’m glad about is that finally the franchise is being called out about how they treat the BIPOC community and so much racism in the fandom. I can’t tell you how many people I fought with about what Rachael K did was wrong, what Chris Harrison said was wrong. But of course there’s always an excuse, and at this point, I’m just not surprised. Those people who are defending Rachael K and Chris are literally the same people who keep saying “We are all equal” but the funny thing is, they don’t practice what they preach. They keep complaining there’s too much talk about race in the fandom. It has to be talked about whether they like it or not, It’s becoming such a big problem that it’s literally all over the news and people are signing petitions to get a new host.

They are only complaining because it makes them uncomfortable, well they have to start being comfortable with uncomfortable because the discussion will never end. I read Rachael K apology and tbh (as a black woman) It made me mad a little because it was a bit alarming like she didnt write it. How did someone not know what racist thing they did was wrong, She was 21 at the time, Even by then, people should be aware of what’s racist and what’s not racist. My thing is, would she even admit what she did was racist if she was never called out on her behavior? Would she have kept this a secret and keep this from Matt James? Sure apologies are just words, Actions are better, so let’s see how she will process this once the show is over. (your thoughts?) What I will say is this regarding what I know from the family insider. Rachael wrote her apology. That wasn’t written by anyone else or a PR team. She was told to put it all together, submit it to ABC, and they would approve or deny it. It was written by a PR firm, it would’ve been put out earlier. She wrote it. She should have known at 21 that Old South formal was wrong (even though at that time it was renamed to Rose Belles), yes, she absolutely should have. I thought her apology was 10x better than Chris’ and gave no excuses. She admitted her ignorance was racist. But still, it’s only words. She has a loooooong road ahead of her. All you need to do is see some of the things still being said on social media to know that.

Anyways now for the show. It was just very weird to watch. This episode was outta pocket from beginning to end. So many girls went home (Chelsea had the best walk out, lol she strutted out, as she should) this Heather girl popping up, and then 5 minutes later going home, Piper going home as well as Jessesnia, Kit and Serena P getting a second one on one date which I thought it was unfair, but then I realized when Jessesina got the one on one date as well, they were planning to send Abigail home. I felt so bad because Matt just dragged and led her on, then when they went to talk privately, he basically said he had forgotten about her and she left. That was just so low of Matt. Then he gave the rose to Rachael for some odd reason instead of giving it to Bri, then danced during Aloe Blacc (finally someone I know) and I had to change the channel until that part was over. I’m definitely NOT ready for Rachaels hometown after everything and I feel like it would be a Get Out 2.

Lastly, as I said before very pleased with the live with you and Ashley and I’m glad you are seeing views from the BIPOC and educating yourself

Comment: We’re doing our best. We won’t be perfect that’s for sure, but we’re just trying to get people to look at this from outside their little white bubble and understand the bigger picture going on here. This show has a major racism problem and BIPOC contestants do not feel comfortable on this show. That’s a huge problem. How they fix it? I’m not sure yet. But something needs to be done.
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Hi Steve!

Love your site. Long time reader. You make bachelor enjoyable for myself and my family!

I have a question about the Rachael craziness. Is anyone taking things a step further and calling out the fraternity that hosts these parties? I went to college in the south and these parties happened every year. I did not attend/do not know what went down, but I do know they happened. Looking back at my years in college (2006+), so many things happened in the Greek life world that I was totally naïve to. Segregated fraternities and sororities, parties, etc. My lack of knowledge back then is scary. I am embarrassed to admit that I was oblivious to my surroundings. I hope if anything good comes out of Rachael’s story, maybe she can be an advocate for more inclusive Greek life and social activities on college campuses. I am going to teach my kids to be better.

Have a blessed week!

Comment: It’s what Ashley and I preached last week on the live. I don’t know how much the two of us can do, but, if you are currently in college, or are still donating to your fraternity or sorority, and you’re hearing this is still happening, write an email to someone saying you no longer will be sending money or supporting that frat/sorority as long as formal like these are happening. It absolutely should be banned on all campuses. Changing the name of Old South in 2016 is an effort in futility if the formal is still going on under a different name. That’s stupid.
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Hi Steve— couple quick questions for you around thoughts re: upcoming ‘hometown’ edits and post-show developments.

Re: edit, do you think Rachael’s hometown edit will be changed at all in light of everything that’s happened? Guess it depends on what footage they had to begin with, but do you think they’d go back and re-edit or is it in the can as originally edited? I doubt it. Remember, the family went to Nemacolin. Matt didn’t go to Cumming, GA. What would they have to change?

As for the ATFR/post-filming, are you hearing anything on whether or not Matt has changed his mind on the ultimate outcome (choosing Rachael) and whether or not there’s any extra filming in real-time now to follow that experience a la Becca/Arie?

Thanks!

Comment: Matt and Rachael are still together and will be come ATFR. I don’t see that changing. After that? Anybody’s guess. Just think of how hard it is to make it as a couple in this franchise when everything is great and America loves you. Matt and Rachael don’t have much support publicly, they’re living through the biggest scandal this show has ever seen, and they can’t address it publicly for another month. Gonna be real tough for these two to make it in the long run.
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Hi Steve,

Thank you for everything you (and Ashley) have done these past couple weeks to bring awareness to such an important topic.

If this has already been asked/answered, feel free to ignore. Regarding the statements denouncing racism from Matt’s women and Tayshia/Clare’s men- do you know if they came up with that on their own, or was it influenced by production? Given they were so strict with Rachael releasing a statement, I’m shocked they allowed this. My thought was maybe producers or the network encouraged it based on the backlash Chris was receiving, but I could be way off. If not, any idea who wrote or came up with the statements? According to Pieper being on the BHH podcast this week, she said it was 6 BIPOC women from this season who came up with the statement. She just didn’t name them by name. But yes, I do believe producers signed off on it. And the timing of it, to post right after Rachael’s apology, wasn’t a coincidence.

I also noticed Yosef didn’t participate in the joint statement (unless I missed it somewhere, I definitely don’t follow him). He continues to prove what type of person he is.

Thanks for all you are doing. I’m so impressed by your efforts to educate yourself on the topic. Ignore the haters!

Comment: Yosef should never be acknowledged again as part of this franchise. Just go away.
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Glad to hear that you managed to survive in the cold crisis in Dallas! Just hang in there and it won’t last long, fortunately.

I felt awful and bloody disgusted with Abigail not getting a 1-1 date when she had the first rose impression, hello? You are right… it is a pity rose. Abigail had the right to tell Matt about the future deaf children situation. Nothing wrong with that. However, I felt it was a bit too early to drop a bomb on him and that was caught him off guard. Whether you agree or not, she should have waited a bit longer and who knows, allowed Matt to figure out if he wanted to know more about her. She would have a better chance to get 1-1 date with him by then and then drop a bomb during the 1-1 date. She might get rejected which would be fine. Maybe not. I felt that he was NOT the right guy for her. Not a good match. She deserves better with someone else who will sweep her off her feet with much happiness and love.

I am done with the Bachelor season after she left the show. I am sorry, Matt does not earn my respect for giving her some s—t. I will continue reading your articles and tweets. Always appreciated!! I agree. Matt wasn’t ending up with her in the long run, so it’s better that way. I didn’t even see much of a connection with them in the beginning. And that first impression rose is looking like a pity rose now.

Since the show didn’t show her that much, it is hard to know more about her and her character. I would love her to be the next Bachelorette but she may be a bit too quiet to fit in the role maybe, but otherwise I will be happily surprised. Any chance you think she may get into BIP for this coming season? I love watching her. I’m not sure what Abigail’s stance is on this franchise, or if she even wants to be a part of it anymore. I haven’t heard either way.

Just wondering any slight chance if you can provide auto closed captions or subtitles in your live IG podcasts, not only for me as an hearing impaired but also for others like me too. Let us know. Unfortunately, I couldn’t and could never watch you and Ashley bec of that so you now know I would love to but…. 🙂

Thanks for all you do as always!

Comment: I’m not sure the IG lives have closed captioning on them. That feature isn’t a thing on the live as far as I know. Sorry.
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Hey Steve…I’ve been reading all about the Chris Harrison comments, and I’m learning a lot, but I must admit to my ignorance. My dad was born and raised in the deep south, and I visited him after he and my mother were divorced. When I was a teenager, I visited him a few times in the summer, and watched in horror as his racist actions took center stage. He was a Deputy Sheriff, and as soon as he would come home at the end of his shift, he didn’t waste any time telling me all about his dealings with (insert numerous racist comments here) black people, or anyone who wasn’t white. I hated it then, and was pretty fearful of his attitude. Looking back now, I wonder if he secretly was a part of the KKK. His attitude was HORRIBLE. His mouth just disgusted me to no end. I stopped visiting him after that, and I was about 14. It was the early 80’s. I knew then that his attitude was wrong, but back then, I didn’t understand the term “racism” and what it really meant. My mother, coming from Europe, had a different attitude, and it was very welcome compared to my father. She taught me to be respectful of everyone, no matter what the color of their skin was, no matter where they came from, no matter what they did, etc. I was taught to simply treat every person I met with grace, dignity, respect, love, honesty, etc. I still live by that today.

I rejected my father’s racism to the point that I never wanted him to meet my children. After he ignored me for most of my life, I reconnected with him when my children were pretty young. They spent a couple of weeks with him, but thankfully they did not keep his attitudes. THANK GOD.

I guess what bothers me is when people say opinions about racism, saying that ignorance is racism. Do you feel it’s racist if I was taught to simply treat EVERYONE with respect, dignity, love, etc.? To me, racism is just disgusting, and I want no part of it. But it really bothers me to think that people think I could be. Racism just makes me so utterly nauseous. Really. So please…I would love to hear your opinion. Is it enough to treat everyone with this respect? For me, I guess the term colorblind meant that my attitude was right. No matter what your skin color, or ANYTHING AT ALL….I didn’t care. I was still respectful and nice. I can’t be anything but that way, It’s in my DNA now. I have taught my children that way too.

Anyway…thanks for reading. I look forward to your answer, if you have time. I do love your site, and love reading it all!

Have a great day,

Comment: I think you have to understand, the system basically makes all of us racist if you’re white. Because this country was founded on white supremacy and benefits white people the most. So it’s engrained in us for things to be easier. Not saying all white people have it easy, but, we’re automatically at an advantage because of the color of our skin. It’s more about being anti-racist. What you’re doing certainly helps being anti-racist. But there’s more that all of us can do. Ashley and I are going to talk more about this on our next live. Don’t get discouraged about it. You’re raising your kids right. But it’s just not enough to treat others well. It’s also about calling out racist behavior when you experience it.
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Steve,

COMMENT: I’m a big believer in KARMA. It may not bite you today. It may not bite you tomorrow. But, it will eventually bite. I feel that the “Mean Girls” club got what they delivered to others. (They were let go by Matt.) The way they picked on the new girls, Heather, each other, etc. was so immature. If your connection with the bachelor/bachelorette is strong, it shouldn’t matter what else is happening or who comes in to the house.

QUESTION: I’m not saying a person can’t change, but obviously Rachael did not come on the show to “find love.” (Not that anyone does). How do you see Matt handling this situation now that it is all out in the open? Have you heard any rumors on the issue or statements from his camp? I think with all the things that could break a couple up, this has to be the worst. To find out, as a POC, that your chosen is a racist, has to be the most horrible realization. I can’t see how she ever thought this wasn’t going to come out.

Thanks for all your input.

Comment: They’re together and I fully expect him to support her at the ATFR. You can pretty much already write his script. “I care for this woman, the social media stuff about her is not the person I know her to be, there isn’t a racist bone in her body,” etc. You know it’s coming. I mean what else would we expect? Because any other answer, and he’s not supporting her and they really wouldn’t be together. Rachael made an apology in the written word. That’s the easiest apology to make. I hope for the next month she’s practicing and understanding what she needs to say verbally, because people will be coming after her from every angle, and they will dissect every interview, every paragraph, every sentence, and every word out of her mouth. That’s why I said she’d got a looooooong road ahead. The apology was a start. But once people start hearing her speak on this, and read her face and body language, that’s when a more in depth look on how serious she is will begin.
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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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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Nahu

    February 17, 2021 at 9:18 AM

    The Bachelor hasn’t been doing well in ratings all season long. For the first time in years, Fox’s 9-1-1 pulled more viewers than The Bachelor and was tied in the 25-54 key demo. Colton and Peter had 1.9 in key demo and pulled 1 million more viewers than Matt.

  2. justsaying

    February 17, 2021 at 11:03 AM

    What is Steve going to do if the franchise is canceled

  3. fishbelt

    February 17, 2021 at 5:26 PM

    @just saying – podcasts about old 90210 episodes. He has always had a vendetta against Chris Harrison since he started this website, so, what comes around, goes around.

  4. mgb970

    February 20, 2021 at 6:55 PM

    @just saying

    > if the franchise is canceled

    Probably time for that. It’s no longer about love. Being there for the “right reasons” now means not screwing up getting insta-famous. Ever conversation on race the franchise gets wrong.

    It’s just an effing train wreck at this point. The franchise needs to be put down mercifully.

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