Reality Steve

Reader Emails

“Reader Emails,” Finale Ratings Double (CORRECTED), Final Thoughts on the Season

Photo Credit: ABC

First, thanks again for a great season of spoilers – frankly BIP is what I am looking forward to, – sounds like this season is a bit bonkers!

Anyhow, – you’ve mentioned that there’s a bit of travel possible for Michelle’s season – if in fact that doesn’t happen because of the Covid situation – do you think they’ll AT LEAST try and up their game for dates, etc? Because seriously, half the fun of the show was the over the top dates and locations. The dates now (and granted, they are stuck in one place) are BRUTAL. And the resort that hosted Katie’s season certainly wasn’t done any favours – the place ended up looking as appealing as a deserted mining town.

Also – thanks for pointing out that the ending wasn’t out of the ordinary – I kept thinking I missed something. Honestly, I thought it might be that she proposed to him – but nope…..

Comment: There’s only so much you can do if you’re in one place. I don’t expect anything to change in terms of dates. While in CA and it’s over 100 degrees in the desert where they are, I expect some of the dates to be inside. Once they’re in Minnesota, lets see what they do and if they go public with dates.

i just read your recap. you cannot honestly say she would have that exact reaction if Justin did what Greg did. It would be completely different. i do think Greg was her pick and that’s why she reacted the way she did. if she thought blake was her person, she would be mad but not to that level because she would know she was going to send him home anyways??? i get that the show made us think peter was Rachels number one and Brooks was Desirees, but this situation feels different. i get you’re trying to be different now, but i wish you had more of an opinion like you used to. that’s what seperated you from the 72828262728 other people that do the exact thing you do (recap and spoil.)

Comment: I couldn’t disagree more with all of this. People saying she would’ve picked Greg if he didn’t leave is just an opinion, yet you’re saying it as fact. She said yesterday the end result of this season wouldn’t have changed. So if you don’t want to take her at her word, then nothing she says matters to you apparently, which means you’ve left no room open for discussion.

And I’m sorry you feel that way. But if you don’t feel like I have an opinion on things, I don’t know what to tell you. I say I most certainly do.

Hi Steve,

It’s possible through creative editing that maybe Greg wasn’t there for the right reasons or maybe there were conversations or details the audience wasn’t privy to. But based on what I saw the last night, my jaw dropped watching Katie’s behavior. She sounded like a massive bitch. Greg told her last episode he loved her, she filled a hole in his heart and her response was I like looking at you???? He knew there were other guys, but she couldn’t hug him or kiss him, something affectionate to let him know she liked him a lot too? Actions speak louder than words. I think he saw the writing on the wall and that’s why he bailed–not because he was “gaslighting”.

Then she walked on stage and refused to shake his hand or hug him, very immature IMHO. She called him rude and said he was gaslighting when it appeared he was pouring his heart out to her. His feelings didn’t matter it was all about her?

As for the family, I would tell my guy friends to run like hell if they ever met a woman or family member who says to your face we don’t need men but we want you around. You’re walking into a lion’s den where you will have to live up to an impossible standard and nothing you ever do or say will ever be ok in their eyes. Greg should be thanking Katie for dodging a bullet.

As for Blake, I can’t imagine a guy sticking around after she said she almost left when Michael A. and Greg left. Translation: they were my final two.

It was also odd when Katie told her family something like we’re both busy and have things we want to accomplish in life and I’m fine being alone for a month. Is she trying to convince herself Blake is a good fit? The problem isn’t him being away for a month. The problem is when she said they both have interests and things they want to accomplish in life. That means they’re not ready to settle down because if they were, the wording would have been different. Not sure what his end game is but I don’t see this going far at all on top of the fact he appeared to like three bachelorettes in about a year’s time.

And poor Justin didn’t realize how low on the totem pole he was until he watched the show back. Yea, he wasn’t even in the running.

Comment: I mean, how do you even respond to something like this when they made the media rounds yesterday, explained how their relationship is, what their plans are moving forward, etc? So you don’t buy Katie and Blake at all. Ok. I don’t know what I’m supposed to say in return.

Hey Steve,

Writing to you again because I had seen what you wrote about gaslighting and as someone who was in a relationship for years and was gaslighted, I felt like giving examples from what I experienced might help others understand. I found myself triggered by some things on the ATFR last night and just people putting out their thoughts. I think Katie watched it back after reading about Greg and just exploded on him. I totally get her anger but think she over did it. Greg I felt like maybe wasn’t as sincere or honestly just didn’t know how to respond to Katie. But gaslighting is something that’s done over a period of time. I spent over 3 years with someone who has affected me so much to this day I still don’t know if things were real in my relationship. One thing my ex did was he was would convince me he had spoken to my ex bf’s or guys I had hooked up with from the past and that that guy claimed on cheated in my bf at the time which I never did. He tried to convince me that he spoke to them so that I would message them and ask if my boyfriend spoke to them, so that I could go back to my bf and say you never messaged then I just asked and so that he could then claim I cheated on him. This is something he did multiple times a month to me over the course of 3 years to the point that I even asked people long after we broke up if he ever reached out to them because I still didn’t know if he actually did or not. That’s just one of the things my ex did that is an example of gaslighting someone. I truly didn’t know what to believe and questioned my reality. I think Greg is truly broken from his father’s passing and needs to seek help before getting into a serious relationship. Which is also something Greg admitted to yesterday on Nick’s podcast. His dad’s death has affected him moreso than he’s lead on, he’s been in therapy because of it, and he’s still processing it. Sorry you had to a deal with a guy like that. That’s awful and yes, a much more true definition of what gaslighting is.

Also do you know the orders of the hometowns actually filmed? Katie said she knew at Blake’s hometown so maybe when Greg did confess her love she didn’t know how to respond because she realized how she felt about Blake. Just a thought


Comment: No, don’t remember.

Hey Steve. Just wanted to give one last take and vent on the Katie and Greg situation and then I’ll be done with it. Thank you for the opportunity to vent.

1. I know Greg was in the wrong for going off like he did. He should have taken a breath, reset, and to your point, just admit he didn’t see an engagement with her when she has relationships with two other guys. It’s valid and realistic to feel that way. Initially, he may have WANTED an engagement heading into hometowns, but realized he wasn’t ready after he didn’t get the reassurance he desperately needed. I don’t think either of them truly loved each other. I think it was infatuation in an unrealistic, highly emotional and accelerated environment that makes it feel like love. So I genuinely think Greg thought he was in love, but in reality, it was infatuation. We he didn’t get the reassurance he needed, he was crushed. Understandable. Period. Which I think is something that happens to a lot of them. When your sole focus has to be on one person for 2 months, yeah, you might think you’re falling in love with them, but as we all know, it’s hard to believe you’re in love with someone that you spent more than 72 total hours with. So you’re probably more in love with the idea of eventually being in love with them.

2. However, I think alot of people, including you maybe, are not taking enough time to really understand Greg’s pain and circumstance, I think. For one, he is in an unnatural, intensified situation where he has to basically compete for Katie’s heart against 30 men, let alone two other men. His feelings are valid despite all the reassurance he got before, because when he REALLY poured his heart out to Katie, he needed to know if Katie really loved him and saw a future with him as opposed to sticking to the format of the show. Yeah, I get it, it’s a show. But I understand he just wants a real, monogamous relationship without having to compete with two others guys. Maybe he just didn’t understand the show, but he shouldn’t have signed up for it. He still has unresolved grief and he was kinda love-bombing with that shared trauma with Katie, and I don’t think that’s a healthy relationship. He needs to heal, get therapy, and then maybe he can pursue a relationship. Which he admitted to yesterday.

3. I think we should be more open to grace and forgiveness with Greg instead of constantly judging and criticizing. Again, he was in an unnatural situation that the premise of the show puts you in, he was fragile and needed more validation fr Katie before he could propose. That’s valid. This whole”he’s acting” nonsense is ridiculous. He was CLEARLY into Katie, and he was CLEARLY in a fragile, distressed , panicked and grief-stricken state. Even psychologists who analyzed it agree. Could he have acted better? Absolutely. Could he have owned up to bad behavior after the fact? Yes. He definitely could have been more emphatic too. I was disappointed he didn’t initially express regret at ATFR. However, he did apologize when Katie confronted him. I think alot of people looked over it though. He said to Katie later “I’m sorry for making you feel like that. I wish I could go back and change how I communicated my feelings. In that moment…my head was in a million places at once.” That seemed sincere. Hopefully, he can continue to reflect with help from friends, family and possibly a therapist and get some grace, understanding, compassion, and forgiveness. He’s human like us. I mean, that’s what I’ve been preaching the last two weeks.

4. In conclusion, Katie and Greg didn’t handle this perfectly. Let’s give both of them grace and forgiveness. It’s hard, but we have to learn to. I have a feeling people are gonna hold this over Greg’s head for the rest of his life. I don’t think that’s right. Give him an opportunity to learn and grow. People are so hateful towards him without really knowing his pain and struggles. It’s an imperfect world. Just saying.

Appreciate your time. I’d love to hear any further thoughts/comments about any of my four points above in your column. I know you already shared your thoughts, but I’d appreciate any feedback. Thanks! And cheers to moving on from this trainwreck lol.

Comment: I agree with a lot of what you said, but you sent this before his appearance on Nick’s podcast so he reiterated a lot of what you said.

Hi Steve,

I find it interesting that you are in collaboration (getting paid to promote) with FBoy as one of the producers is Elan Gale formally of the Bachelor series. I guess pigs do fly!

Also, I hope Michelle’s season has a better crop of guy’s. Katie’s season was meh.

Comment: Elan being the EP on FBoy Island has nothing to do with my collaboration with them. The PR company behind the show approached me, and many other bloggers, to collab and cover the show. That has nothing to do with Elan.

Hi Steve! Long-time reader, first-time emailer, you know the drill.

I think you hit the nail on the head with that analysis of the Katie vs. Greg drama. It’s a continual frustration to me how people hit up social media with their overly simplistic takes. People saying “Katie is a villain,” “Greg is a villain,” “Greg gaslit Katie,” “Katie gaslit Greg…” Jeez, it’s too much, and I never want to hear the word “gaslight” ever again at this point! It’s starting to lose all meaning when people throw it around like that.

I also find it incredibly misogynistic how so many people are labeling Katie a “bitch” for yelling at Greg. First off, I hate that word because of its gendered connotation. Secondly, could Katie have handled it better? Yeah! But I also think she felt manipulated and it’s normal to get angry when you feel wronged. It’s easy to say you would have handled it differently, but you don’t know that. Everyone does the wrong thing sometimes. She’s human like the rest of us. Saying she gaslit Greg is such an oversimplification, it’s driving me batty. I even saw multiple people say she was “occupation shaming” him? Huh?

I know some people want Greg to be Bach now but he would be a huge hypocrite to do such a thing when he criticized Katie for playing the Bachelorette role. There, I’ve said my opinion and I’m moving on with my life now. Best of luck to Katie and Blake. Hope Greg can talk to a professional about his clearly unresolved grieving.

I will say I loved Kaitlyn and Tayshia as hosts because it felt so much more natural to me. Like they were friends of Katie’s she could go to, and they genuinely were invested in her. Do you think ABC would consider hiring them as hosts full-time? Do you think they would consider having two former Bachelors host the season of The Bachelor? Who do you think the network might be interested in if that were the case?

Also would love to hear some more of your Big Brother thoughts this season. Perhaps in a future podcast?

All the best!

Comment: I don’t think they will be the future hosts moving forward on every season, no.

Will definitely be talking Big Brother more in future podcasts. I’m enjoying this season. Especially enjoying it by not following along on the live feeds or getting updates on Twitter. Sometimes I run across things, but last season, I was reading it daily and it made what we saw on Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday less enjoyable because I’d already seen the whole story play out and then some.

Hi Steve. I’ve been wondering about Joe Dirt aka David Spade. I know he is a huge BN fan, is one of the hosts of BIP, and hosts watch parties at his home. Could he be a possible Chris Harrison replacement, starting with the next Bachelor? Perhaps tptb are waiting to see BN reaction to his hosting BIP? He also had the Jimmy Kimmel gig last night interviewing the newly engaged couple. Spade seems to be inserting himself into this world more and more. He is a well known name in the entertainment industry. Have you heard anything?

Thanks for being you!

Comment: I doubt it and that’s because the show still wants you to believe they are a serious show. He wouldn’t fit the Bachelor/ette host. Now, could I see him being a part of BIP every season? That would make more sense because that show doesn’t take itself nearly as serious.

Long time reader, blah blah blah…..

I think the never before seen aspect of Katie’s finale was that Blake knew he was the final guy going into meeting Katie’s family. Which leads me to my question…when did she tell him that she was sending Justin home? Maybe I missed it, but she was talking to Kaitlyn (or Tayshia? can’t remember which), then she sent Justin home, and then it was her hometown date and Blake saying he was the only one left. At what point did he find out he was the last guy standing? No, we never saw it as an audience, but she clearly told him because they both spoke as he was aware of being the only guy there. Weird they didn’t.

As far as the Greg sitch, I’m with you. Neither of them are right. They were both rude and talking over each other. I do think Katie should’ve taken a higher road and that last night was not a good look for her. But Greg should’ve owned up to what he did and admitted he just didn’t feel it anymore. Whatever. Time to move on to BIP and my favorite absolute trainwrecks! And he did own up to what he did – on Nick’s podcast long after all this went down. But at least he did. Because God forbid if he went on Nick’s podcast after all this and STILL said he had no regrets and wouldn’t change anything, that would’ve been a real problem.

Anyway, love your site! I’ve watched this show since the beginning (God only knows why!) and your spoilers make it so much more enjoyable.

Hey Steve,

Appreciate your recent changes in some of your decisions to spoil certain things. It’s definitely noted by little old me atleast!

On the recent promo of BIP they show them all packing up and leaving saying “this never happened before” any idea what that was about or just producer trickery as usual? Pretty sure it’s because of bad weather that rolled in.

Also, I know you by now, I get your cynical. But! If you had to GUESS the odds of Katie and Blake as compared to other couples what do you think their odds are? Again, just a fun Q.

Finally will you be sending this couple a gift as per usual?


Comment: Absolutely will be sending a gift if they get married. That always stands. Guess the odds? 50/50. It’s just impossible to even guess something like that since we don’t really know anything about their relationship.

What I don’t get is when the Katie/Greg thing came up, what’s to stop Katie from saying “You ARE the one I’m going to pick at the end, but I’m not allowed to say that on camera” and then they just edit it out so it’s not shown?

Seems like this would have avoided the whole drama between those 2. In the end, she seemed way more into him than he was into her. Thought she came across very negatively. Him, a bit needy.

Is there some sort of prohibition to even discuss stuff that would make it obvious they’re aware it’s a reality show and they’re on camera? Like “the producer is telling me to ask you ____” and they just would not play that on TV.

Comment: It’s definitely not something they want happening. Does it possibly happen in the overnight dates? Yeah, I think it has. But since she wasn’t picking him, she wouldn’t say that to him. And she’s not gonna say the opposite, because then he definitely would leave. Anybody would. So that’s why the leads would never tell anyone they aren’t picking them. Have some given their favorites some assurances? I believe so.

Watching Fboy Island has made me realize how little enjoyment I have gotten from these last couple seasons of the bachelor/ette. I seriously love that show. With that in mind…..

1) Do you think the loss of Elan negatively impacted the show? I don’t remember thinking it would, but he is a driving force behind Fboy Island. I mean, he’s good at what he does according to a bunch of former contestants. But it’s tough to say overall. We don’t know because he’s not there. Lets remember, when he was there, it’s not like they were great with diversity or ever gave a BIPOC contestant a great edit either. People seem to be forgetting that.

2) I think there needs to be a shake up. How do you feel about the following tweaks?

-a social media deep dive at week 3 to minimize the “wrong reasons” storylines. The idea to let the girls look at the guys IG was probably the smartest thing they did and something Bachelor fans have been clamoring for for a while now. If they do it now after 42 seasons, you know they stole it from FBoy Island.

-cutting the field to 10 really quickly (I am stealing this suggestion from Sharlene from a podcast years ago) I don’t see them doing that. They have 11 episodes they need to produce, and getting to 10 by episode 2 or 3 I just don’t see them doing it.

-giving leads the right to review footage when a conflict is brought to them Will never happen. You’re breaking the 4th wall if they do that and this show really doesn’t go that route.

-No group dates until after week three (to eliminate the trope of insecure frontrunners) Don’t see this either because when you have 20-22 after the first night, you HAVE to have group dates, or about 18-20 guys aren’t getting dates. How would that look? 2-3 guys getting 1-on-1 dates and all the others sitting around and get no dates?

-Lie detector tests after the first rose ceremony with only one question “Have you considered becoming the Bachelor/ette?” They’ve done the lie detector test before on Andi’s season. But doing it right at the beginning to ask that? Probably not. I just don’t see the need since we know they all have at least thought about it.

-Multiple leads for the whole season (I think this should first be done with two guys) I know other countries have pulled this off, and maybe the US version will try it at some point, but I still find that unlikely. They like to have one lead and one lead only for a whole season.

-Requiring actual jobs from leads an contestants

Comment: Jobs they’ll end up quitting anyway? I don’t see that being a prerequisite.

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  1. shellylite

    August 11, 2021 at 11:13 AM

    As for those finale numbers . . . I am one of those people who didn’t watch any of the season until the second to last episode (watched on HULU right before the finale) and then was floored by Greg’s “performance” so I had to watch the finale.
    Having not watched any other episode prior to the fight club episode, I thought Greg turned off his interest in Katie like flipping a light switch and it intrigued me how anyone could do that. Then I found out about the acting school and it made sense.
    Katie was right.
    The emailer who said there is a lot of misogyny in the fan treatment of Katie is 100% correct. She had every right to be furious at Greg’s disrespect. Greg himself, IMO, treated Katie from a misogynistic POV in the fight episode. Like, she didn’t do what he wanted, so that was the end of it for him. That is the definition of an abusive relationship. I have hated the growing sexism on this show for years. Greg encapsulated it. If people can’t see that and want to blame Katie for his behavior, there is no way anyone can help you.
    I think her connection with Blake is genuine, and so what if their love was kind of sudden. Lots of times, love happens that way, and it may very well work out. I wish them the best. He is definitely a nicer guy than Greg by like, a million miles.

  2. unlisted

    August 11, 2021 at 11:53 AM

    I, for one, felt really sorry for Greg.
    Katie is a world-class ball buster who, we were shown, comes from a family of man-hating ball busters.
    I’m surprised Katie even wants to be married…to someone of the male persuasion.
    Oh, yeah, she’s “sex-posiive.”
    But obviously not love-positive.
    And the ATFR “dialogue” with Greg was so one-sided it made me cringe.
    “Misogynist”? Just the opposite!

  3. kat313

    August 11, 2021 at 2:56 PM

    I agree with unlisted and am happy to see the huge numbers for the finale. Why? The big numbers are due to controversy, and we all know how much they love that on this show! Remember how much controversy Nick stirred up? Then there he was showing up everywhere, including being the Bachelor (gag)! Love him or hate him, Greg is a controversial character. I can only hope that history repeats itself!

  4. justsaying

    August 11, 2021 at 3:21 PM

    Greg flipped again for Nick’s interview. Now he’s saying he’s an a** to Kathie. Obviously he admitted to this due to all the backlash. What a phoney baloney. That my professional psycho babble terminology for him LOL

    Team Katie!

  5. dbla31

    August 12, 2021 at 10:55 AM

    “So if the guy in question realizes he didn’t speak to Katie properly, why are other people saying he did?”

    I know Steve meant this as a rhetorical question, but this is so typical of today’s culture. We saw it with Rachael Kirkconnell. She admitted she was wrong for her prior behavior, especially attending that antebellum event. But did her “team” want to hear that? Heck no! Most fans said she was bullied into it, that she should stand up for her rights, that she did nothing wrong, etc. Here this young woman is, growing and learning and people are saying, nah, what you did was fine. No one wants to really listen or learn these days.

  6. justsaying

    August 12, 2021 at 11:09 AM

    @dbla31 People defending and making excuses for Mr Flip-flopper Greg or Kirkconnell’s past are apologists and enablers.

  7. dbla31

    August 12, 2021 at 11:23 AM — LOL! Steve, haven’t you learned by now that many if not most of your fan base does not understand sarcasm? 😉 How much do you want to bet that reader writes back to you to say you have the wrong address, that her e-mail bounced back.

  8. tinyred500

    August 12, 2021 at 12:48 PM


    I hear exactly what you’re saying and agree.

    People who continue to criticise and knock someone else down for trying to explain what they did or said wrong or not appropriate must be beyond perfect humans is all I can say, oh, and live in a place called Utopia. Empathy so obviously bypassed them. :o/

  9. gailer

    August 12, 2021 at 7:25 PM

    Lol now come on! I happen to be an attorney with a highly developed sense of sarcasm of my own. Of course I understood Steve’s reply to me.

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