Reader Emails

“Reader Emails,” Emmanuel Acho on GMA, & (EXCLUSIVE) What’s the “Bachelorette” Twist This Season?

Photo Credit: ABC

Hi Steve,

Quick question that may make me sound completely clueless. I’ve seen Katie identify herself as “sex positive” on multiple occasions and saw the phrase in a few reader emails last week. Can you tell me what “sex positive” means? Help!

Comment: I don’t think there’s one universal answer, but just being open to talking about things regarding sex, whether it’s the act itself, her own sexuality, or the sexual behavior of others. Because to certain people, it’s taboo. You don’t talk about dildos, or masturbating, or the act of sex, etc. For some, they consider that “trashy” or “slutty.” It’s not. At all. I wish more people would understand that. Just because you personally may not feel comfortable talking about those things doesn’t mean it’s wrong. And that’s where people miss the boat. It’s like, if it doesn’t line up with their narrative or what they believe in, then whoever believe it is wrong. It’s just impossible to deal with people who think that way. Sex is great and something we should all talk about freely without being shamed for it. I applaud Katie for it and it’s something I think is a major positive for her going forward.

Here is a perfect example:

Someone who clearly thinks because you own a vibrator and use it to get off, that you’re not “classy.” So narrow minded.
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Hi Steve,

Thanks for another great season of spoilers. I’m curious what your thoughts are about Rachael. I really get the sense that she’s head over heels in love with Matt. While they were filming did you also hear that? Obviously, it’s infatuation but she seems genuine around him. It actually makes me feel sad for him because he also seems really into her. Do you think Rachael will try to win him back? Has she been in touch with him since everything went down?

On a side note, Michelle is one of my favorite contestants of all time. She’s so sincere and authentic. I would love a season with her as Bachelorette. It would remind me of the earlier seasons before they had influencers, models and personal trainers…. She only recently got an IG account and her posts are sweet.

Comment: I think if Matt didn’t break it off, they’d definitely still be together. I know that sounds simple, but I guess I’m trying to say, yeah, you’re right. She definitely fell for him and is highly disappointed and was caught off guard he dumped her.
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Hi Steve!

Longtime reader, but I’ve never felt the need to write until now. As an elementary school teacher, I have to tell you that your tweet was not off base at all. I was actually talking with another teacher friend of mine this morning about where could Michelle possibly work that this would be allowed? Yes, as a teacher I am allowed to have a sex life. However, my sex life does not need to be shared with my elementary students. No, being a teacher does not define me. However, being a teacher puts you in a position where a lot of parents, students, and community members are looking at you to set an example for your students. Personally, that would make me not go on this show. I imagine if I asked the higher ups for 2-3 months off to go on a television show where I was letting someone rub butter on my body and doing a Zoom call with my students, they would probably ask if I’d like a recommendation for my next job. Just wanted to give you a teacher’s opinion.

I enjoy your column and this silly show. This season hasn’t been my favorite, but I’m looking forward to Katie! I love her! Keep up the awesome work!

Comment: I appreciate that coming from a teacher. Not every school district or principal might feel this way, but it would be naïve to think this wouldn’t happen in certain places. Different school districts react different ways when parents/teachers/kids do something on TV they don’t like. Remember a few years ago when Brandi Redmond from Real Housewives of Dallas was on this podcast and told the story of how she had to switch schools for her daughters because her school didn’t like Brandi calling wine “Jesus Juice?” It happens. Doesn’t seem to the case with Michelle’s school as clearly they’re letting her go on for a second time this summer, but if you say it wouldn’t fly with your school, I’m not gonna argue that since I know that’s possible.
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I was on msn.com the other day, and there was a featured article about Reality Steve and The Bachelor. I read it. They basically parroted everything you have already said. I am sure this is old news to you. How many news sites, magazines, and blogs do their Bachelor reporting based off of your site? (Journalism is so hard these days. Geez.)

Comment: I’ve lost track. But when I’m reporting as much new information and as many new spoilers about this franchise as I do, and their job is to cover any breaking news from the show, it’s expected. All I ask is they cite where it came from. None of my close guy friends watch the show. They all know what I do but they don’t watch. But they always usually send me a link when they see something on msnbc or yahoo news or something. They think it’s funny.
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Hey Steve,

I don’t think I’ve ever sent a reader e-mail but we do have exchanged messages in the past in other social platforms. My question is about Temptation Island. And it’s basically, if you had to guess, what would be your prediction for the four couples? Mine would be:

Erica & Kendal break up; Erica leaves alone & Kendal with Alekcys

Tom & Chelsea break up and leave alone

Julian & Kristen leave together

Erin & Corey break up & Erin leaves with someone although this one I’m the least sure about.

Also, I’ve recently started watching the latest season of Spain’s version of TI called “La isla de las tentaciones”. It’s way juicier than the US version and they have some interesting differences too. For example, members of the couples can invoke a confrontational bonfire to talk to their bf/gf about their behavior and if their partner does not accept it they have to leave. Another one is an alarm where, after they impose limits on what they’d be okay with, if someone’s partner breaks the rules, the alarm sounds but they don’t know who caused it.

Can you imagine if Kaci would have had the chance at a confrontational bonfire with Evan in season 1? TI should take a look and consider adopting some of these things. They also have 5 couples instead of 4 and only 10 singles instead of 12.

Thanks for taking your time for this.

Comment: That’s interesting. I still haven’t decided what I think happens with any of the couples. Well, other than Kendal. I can’t see any way he leaves the island in a solid relationship with Erica. Whether he leaves with Alexcys or not, I don’t know because something could still happen the rest of the season. And maybe Erica leaves with someone herself. I’m just convinced based on what I’ve seen that they don’t leave the island as a couple. The other ones I need more time.

As for the international version, that’s definitely throwing a wrench into things. My guess is they won’t do that with the US show though. I think they like this format.
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Hi RS,

Regarding the bachelorette, do you know when they start filming since Katie is still active on social media and I thought she would be quarantining by now. I guess she will leave either later this week or next week. About the host, do you think it’s possible there won’t be one and it will be past leads or contestants who will host dates. If they did that, it would be the first season there won’t be one.

Comment: My guess is Katie leaves next week some time. They’re not doing 2 weeks quarantine on this show. Just one. So my guess is Katie leaves next week, and the guys leave for New Mexico a little after that since we don’t know the exact start date yet. We will once they release the possible cast to the public. Once that is released, season usually begins filming 2-3 days later.
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What are the chances that it wasn’t Matt’s choice to cancel the last date? It was an awfully cruel thing to do, especially not arriving in person to cancel.

It sounds like what Production would do – torture the poor girl for a full day for no reason.

Comment: Of course it was production’s decision to make it seem like Matt was struggling with his decision and put doubt into the viewers heads. There was no doubt. He was picking Rachael. That was all done for TV purposes to throw the audience off.
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I just have to say that I thought it was a little strange that they didn’t show the waking up/morning portion of Matt and Rachael’s overnight. Why would they cut that portion out for the woman he ends up picking? Just didn’t make sense and felt jarring going from fireworks and kissing to all of a sudden being at the rose ceremony. Also, your Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers reference made me smile.

Comment: Yeah, not sure why they cut that out considering we saw both Michelle and Bri in the morning after. Although, probably not to give anything away and fit with the narrative that he was struggling with his decision when he wasn’t.
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Could you please stop ragging on Chris Harrison? He’s a human being. Nobody is perfect. Your posts make it sound like he’s responsible for murdering somebody. Give me a break! In this “politically correct” world, nobody can say anything without being trashed.

Most of the viewers LOVE Chris Harrison. We do not want Strahan or others taking his job. You should not be the judge, jury, and executioner of Chris Harrison. I’m sure you’ve done something you’ve regretted. When that happened, didn’t you appreciate people who gave you the benefit of the doubt?? PLEASE give Chris Harrison a break and stop disparaging him in your column.

Thank you,

A Longtime Bachelor/Bachelorette Fan

Comment: Yes ma’am. Whatever you say.

Murdering somebody? Really? THAT’S what my posts sound like? Exaggerate much?

It’s people like this, who write emails like THAT, which make me want to stab myself in the eyeball over and over with a pencil.
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Hi Reality Steve,

How are you? Hope you are doing well. I started reading your blog approx. 2009-2010 and really like watching the show through the lens of spoilers. It helps prevent that duped feeling from not being in the know. Now, I almost can’t watch any Reality TV without seeing the production elements.

On a non-Bachelor note regarding TV, have you seen the Social Dilemma on Netflix? I highly recommend it if you haven’t. It involves former key players from different social platforms spilling the tea on what happens behind the scenes. It was an eye-opener to me on how far society has fallen in the last 13 years and a few reasons why. After watching it you can’t unsee the producing that is going on behind the scenes of social media. You opened me up to the production aspects of reality TV and I would be remiss if I didn’t let you know about it. The unknown producers of social media may be far worse than the producers of the Bachelor. Here’s a better description from the Internet: The Social Dilemma is an American docudrama film directed by Jeff Orlowski and written by Orlowski, Davis Coombe, and Vickie Curtis. It goes into depth on how social media’s design is meant to nurture an addiction, manipulate its use in politics, and spread conspiracy theories such as Pizzagate and aiding groups such as flat-earthers. The film also examines the serious issue of social media’s effect on mental health (including the mental health of adolescents and rising teen suicide rates). Oh yes, I’ve seen it. It’s a must watch.

Regarding the Bachelor franchise, I have some assorted thoughts and questions for you:

Do you think the Bachelor producers were looking for someone that would take issue with a black Bachelor to create ratings? Maybe they saw some of Rachael’s past social posts hoping they could make her a racist villain? Then when the exact opposite happened they were shocked, stupefied, and had to scramble for drama, hence the extra serving of cattiness we got this season with all the mean girl footage. I don’t believe that was the case. I don’t believe Rachael was planted on this season to cause all this drama. Never have bought that theory.

In regards to Matt:

Maybe when production said they were not going to work with an unknown bachelor/bachelorette again that was code for; we’re not going to work with someone we don’t know since we have to have someone that we can manipulate or will at least play by our rules.

When Chris Harrison said that he had to explain a rose ceremony to Matt, do you think that was code for, “I had to explain to him that we got to pick when women leave the show, it’s not about you Matt, it’s about ratings.”

Regarding Matt and his Dad, I am so tired of the drudging up of real family drama. Watching that scene last night wasn’t fair and I’m tired of being exposed to difficult and dark family dynamics that are none of my business. Did you notice his Dad said he was there to celebrate Matt? Pretty sure that was how production lured him in; Please come by the show so we can celebrate Matt. Yes. His dad was clearly ambushed by that convo as well.

The series in general:

This new trend of watching the women and men come together after the overnights and share their experiences is just draining. It just feels wrong. Yes, they all signed up to date one guy at the same time, but there is something different with the morning after recap that is extremely bothersome. I actually think it detracts value from the show.

I’ve watched this Bachelor series for far too long (since season 1) and am really wearing out on it. I wonder if other people that have watched it from Day 1 are outgrowing it and tiring of it too?

Last but definitely not least, if you had a friend that wanted to go on reality TV, Bachelor or otherwise, which are the top 5-10 podcasts of yours that you would have them listen to so they are prepared for and maybe deterred by the experience?

Thank you,

Comment: I definitely think you aren’t alone in that people are getting tired of it.

Well as far as your podcast question, I think that would all depend on what show they were doing. Because I’m pretty sure all popular reality shows all have numerous podcasts that are dedicated to them. We know the Bachelor ones. Survivor has Rob Has a Podcast and all their shows. Big Brother has many former contestants who have shows, etc.
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Hi Steve!

Being a part of Bachelor Nation (the publicly silent/non-toxic kind that I’d like to think that MOST of us belong to) for the last few years, I’ve always enjoyed reading your blog. The show is honestly getting so boring. Your spoilers are the only excitement we can expect these days because the show is just what it is: problematic on so many levels, but this season, we seem to be focused on race. Is it necessary and relevant? Absolutely. But this show isn’t exactly a pillar built upon moral high ground. I just read where Rachel Lindsay was quoted saying:

“If the Bachelor franchise has shown us anything is that they don’t know to protect people of color, they only know how to exploit them. They only know how to mishandle situations when they come to race,” she shared. “This conversation may have been necessary for Matt. Maybe Matt did need this, but this was a conversation that should have been just for Matt, but for the rest of the world to see it shows that you don’t care about your contestants — specifically the ones of color. The fact that you were so willing to throw him under the bus and exploit him for stereotypes within the community for what you would call ‘good TV.’”

Here’s my thing: she’s not wrong, but this franchise has never (or at the very least HARDLY) protected ANY of the people on this show. There are SO many issues in the franchise that we could point out. Isn’t it fair to say that this show has never cared about any of their contestants when it didn’t serve a specific purpose? Don’t they exploit EVERYONE? Should Matt’s conversation with his dad happened on tv? No—most people wouldn’t choose that. It was cringe-worthy and I’m sure painful for everyone involved (except the production team I’m sure). But the same could be said for several situations every season. Don’t they play on stereotypes and female insecurities at every turn? And this show will throw ANYONE under the bus if it means more viewers and ad money.

All I’m saying is, I like Rachel Lindsay but sometimes it’s hard to hear someone who willingly signed up for the Bachelor (to date Nick V #barf) and then became the Bachelorette (loved her season!), met and married her husband, and has a full on public career because of this franchise, criticize it when it’s 100% the same institution now as it was back when she signed on as a willing participant. Is it fair for us to criticize a franchise when we’re not willing to just not watch/write/tweet/podcast about it or earn a paycheck because we’re associated with it?

It seems like the only solution to ending the madness is to truly step away and not give it any more attention. I know that won’t happen, but so does the production team so all we’re doing in the meantime is lining their pockets. Race is a HUGE issue, but it’s in good company with a host of other issues as well.

Give it to us straight Steve: will the show ever TRULY change? And if not—what then? I know you hate it when people swear they won’t watch it anymore but what’s the alternative because it just seems like a waste of time to read articles about what SHOULD change when it never will.

Comment: While I agree with some of that, I don’t agree with all of it. There are absolutely people from this franchise they HAVE protected. And you can’t tell me that BIPOC contestants are treated differently, not only fans, but by production on this show. It’s just not true. And what’s happened to Rachel since the second she sat on her couch for her ATFR is a perfect example of that. She has absolutely been treated, and been portrayed, differently than white leads. There is absolutely no denying that.

Will it truly ever change? We won’t know until future seasons start airing. They better.
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Hey Steve!

I’ve been a fan of yours since the “pleaaasee stop interrupting meee!” days. Man, those were simpler times.

Anyway, I was just curious what you think is going to happen with Myers Leonard after that video came out of him dropping an anti Semitic slur on Call of Duty livestream? With everything going on in Toxic Bachelor Nation, it got me thinking and was wondering if you think he’ll be held accountable the same way Chris Harrison has.

I’m more of a causal fan when it comes to the NBA and only really follow my team or whatever happens to trend on Twitter, so I was wondering how stuff like this gets handled (or handled at all) when it comes to NBA players or athletes in general? I know that’s probably a loaded question but I’m a Trail Blazers fan and after having Myers in my city for 8 years, he received a mixed reception here and never seemed like the brightest bulb in the box. What he said was completely unacceptable and his apology was very surface level, like CH’s.

You’re the only guy I know who is knowledgeable about bachelor nation and is also a huge sports fan (pretty great combo if you ask me!), so I’d love your take on this.

Thanks!

Comment: Well, the Heat have suspended him indefinitely, which they absolutely had to do. Whether or not he ever comes back is up in the air. They might just decide to cut him. He’s out for the season anyway with a shoulder injury, so my guess is he gets cut outright at some point.
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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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18 Comments

18 Comments

  1. mgb970

    March 10, 2021 at 9:04 AM

    > but every time I see Matt rub his hands
    > together while walking it makes me cringe.
    > In my opinion he’s prettyyyy close to being
    > the worst bachelor ever.

    This is a weird take.

    Matt has done a great job handling drama, lets the ladies down with respect, etc. Sure, the talk with dad was uncomfortable but that’s more on his dad for being a jerk and the producers for stoking sh!t like that for ratings.

    Worst bachelors ever include Nick Vial for being a gigantic douche.

    Pilot Petey for being a whipped mama’s boy and facilitating drama among the women.

    Juan Pablo for being a misogynist.

  2. progressive4ever

    March 10, 2021 at 10:30 AM

    Every second, of every minute, of every hour, of every day, of every week, of every month, of every year since the dawn of time is White history. THAT’S part of the problem.

  3. kathyr

    March 10, 2021 at 11:37 AM

    I agree, Matt is the worst bachelor ever! Wish they never would of had him. I quit watching this season and was a loyal fan.

  4. ctrealitygirl

    March 10, 2021 at 12:01 PM

    I wholly agree with you mgb970! Matt’s worst trait is that he doesn’t show a lot of emotion. But he IS a gentleman and treated the women with respect. Like you, I can name way worse bachelors: Ben Flajnik, Jake Pavelka, Peter Weber, Arie. And you have to cut Matt some slack as this was his first bachelor gig. Unlike most before him, he did not go thru a season on the Bachelorette, so I truly don’t think he knew what he was getting into. And with Covid dictating that they stay in one place, not to mention have to isolate the female contestants for weeks before finally starting the show…you make for one crazy season…all of which he is not to blame.

  5. justsaying

    March 10, 2021 at 12:28 PM

    I am so excited for Michelle as bachelorette with her amazing parents!! I feel like you can trust them with your newborn even after knowing them for a few minutes LOL

  6. rob22

    March 10, 2021 at 12:56 PM

    When you’re naming worst Bachelors, Matt’s not anywhere near the top half of that list. Along with those named like Ben Flajnick, Pilot Pete, Jake, Juan Pah-Blow, and don’t forget Farmer Chris Soles who laughed like a girl and had zero personality… and killed someone in a drunk driving incident. Some of the early ones too like Alex Michelle, Aaron, Travis, Lorenzo, Matt…. there’ve been some really bad ones. Matt’s been as good as he can be. The mean girls cast & the racial controversy, including whatever Chris Harrison was trying to do, killed this season. Not Matt’s fault.

  7. ctrealitygirl

    March 10, 2021 at 1:26 PM

    Also…so many people are bashing Matt because he only gave Rachael a promise ring and and did not propose. I find that refreshing, and a whole lot more realistic! How many bachelors have proposed only to be broken up by ATFR?? I think he’s a decent guy, just didn’t have a big enough personality to pull off the lead. But def NOT the worst bachelor ever.

  8. kayakguy

    March 10, 2021 at 1:56 PM

    This has been the most boring season I can recall. All producer manufactured drama and very little getting to know the contestants and Matt. Resulted in it being a super boring season. Also, my favorite man Chris H is not there anymore — he was one of the only reasons I watched.
    Time to start watching Bachelor Canada and Australia instead, or Married at first Sight

  9. fishbelt

    March 10, 2021 at 3:00 PM

    Of course Steve thinks anyone else for host besides Chris Harrison is “awesome”. Would love to know the back story behind his blatant hatred toward the guy since day one. Many years ago.
    Matt wasn’t bad, just boring. I thought Ben Higgins was boring, too. I think the Bachelorette is better tv as the guys are funny and mostly get along. It’s like watching a frat house. BIP should be fun. Wonder if Queen Victoria will be there, HA HA.

  10. aar85

    March 10, 2021 at 7:05 PM

    This is obviously unpopular opinion but I actually liked Ben Flajnik. Am I the only one? I’m curious as to why his name always comes up among the worst bachelors. I’d love to hear another opinion!

  11. shellylite

    March 10, 2021 at 7:07 PM

    How do I watch Bachelor Canada or Australia? I’ve had it with the American version. It’s been totally destroyed. You get nasty misogynistic b*tches like Victoria getting forgiven and verbally loved by blank canvas Matt himself, and people like Rachel K totally destroyed to the point I think she’ll have to move to another country. So sick of the whole thing.

  12. shellylite

    March 10, 2021 at 7:21 PM

    And a P.S. – there is a “black entertainment channel” and it’s called BET.
    does Reality Steve not know this?
    Most of the shows, if not all of them, are comprised of mostly black people. Just in case he really was not aware.
    And one final comment, slightly related to that – I used to watch The Real Housewives of Atlanta – it was multi-racial in the first two seasons, until they bullied the only white star off the show, and the one Asian lead disappeared – and then it became an all-black show about all-black women. Which is kind of weird because Atlanta is not 100% black, more like 50-50. So what happened? No one ever explained.

  13. justsaying

    March 11, 2021 at 7:24 AM

    I didn’t like the way Matt dumped Abigail after teasing her all season. So cruel! Then, the dumping of Michele and then, cuts off the final date with Racheal only to not even hand out any ring at the end. What is up with that?? Serena and Kitt are right to walk away.

    Just saying, all the married couples in the franchise ALL end with engagement rings. ALL couple with just promise or no rings, none of them are married.

  14. auntk

    March 11, 2021 at 9:35 AM

    I am glad that Michelle put her teaching first and said she wouldn’t leave her class again. I like seeing decisions that inspire. I agree that she and her family were a breath of fresh air. (casting really has a way of compelling me to keep watching.)

    Ever since the overnights aired my husband and I have been blandly saying “Thank you for sharing that with me.” as a joking response to things. Maybe Matt is a good enough person to have attempted to signal his decision to the other women in that way? – likely the only acceptable way for production.

  15. williamblack

    March 11, 2021 at 9:26 PM

    Its really funny seeing weakling Steve position this poor girl Rachel who wore a dress at a party as a “racist”

    Meanwhile the girl is on national TV professing her love for a black guy,yet somehow she is a klansman if you read what dummy, low IQ Steve writes and listen to his pathetic podcasts where he kisses ass.

    At a certain point, its humorous watching Steve take a silly lighthearted dating show that he makes a living off of, and turning it into a contest to prove how woke he and that demented ashley spivey are. Steve I got news for ya, when this show goes off the air, no one gives a damn for your survivor recaps or whatever you plan to do. Hope you have a backup plan for income if your cancel campaign succeeds against the bachelor, because I don’t know if whole foods is hiring for a guy like you.

  16. mgb970

    March 13, 2021 at 12:50 PM

    @aar85

    > This is obviously unpopular opinion but I
    > actually liked Ben Flajnik. Am I the only one?

    I had zero issues with Ben Flajnik as the bachelor. I think people conflate Courtney with him being a ‘bad’ Bachelor.

    If one put Ben in a line up with Nick Vial, Pete, and Juan Pablo, I don’t think anyone would actually pick Ben.

  17. fishbelt

    March 14, 2021 at 2:56 PM

    Lots of franchise news the last few days, but you didn’t read any of it here.
    To the person inquiring about Ben F. – he was ok. Jake Pavelka and Pete were the worst 2 IMO. Funny – both are (or were) pilots.

  18. LT

    March 15, 2021 at 7:06 PM

    I will not be watching The Bachelorette.
    #CancelCancelCulture

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