ABC Reveals Bachelorette Twist During ‘Bachelor’ Finale – The Hollywood Reporter

[This story contains spoilers for The Bachelor’s season finale.]

Fans of the Bachelor franchise are finally getting closure to a particularly chaotic season.

During Tuesday’s conclusion to the two-part finale for Clayton Echard’s season, ABC revealed that both Gabby Windey and Rachel Recchia will share rose responsibilities as co-stars on The Bachelorette season 19, set to premiere Monday, July 31. Jesse Palmer, who debuted as franchise host for Echard’s season, will return to host.

This marks the first time that two women will be co-leads on The Bachelorette. In 2015, contestants were given the choice between Kaitlyn Bristowe and Britt Nilsson as the lead, with Bristowe prevailing.

The announcement followed Susie Evans deciding she’s open to continuing her relationship with Echard after walking away the previous week upon learning the former football player had been intimate with both Windey and Recchia. After convincing Windey and Recchia to stay in Iceland and give him another chance and then introducing them to his parents, Echard parted ways with them both.

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From left: Gabby Windey, Rachel Recchia, Clayton Echard and Susie Evans on The Bachelor
ABC/Craig Sjodin

Michelle Young was the most recent Bachelorette, and she accepted a proposal from Nayte Olukoya during her season 18 finale that aired in December.

Echard, 28, finished in eighth place on Young’s season, and his selection as the new Bachelor was announced prior to Young’s season airing. Once his scenes were televised, some fans had trouble understanding why he was the pick, given that he didn’t have much airtime or a particularly compelling narrative; his selection was subject to even further debate after viewers learned that Young’s final four remaining suitors were all Black men, a first for the series.

The controversy continued throughout Echard’s season. There were questions about his willingness to listen to the women in the house — given that he continued to reward Shanae Ankney, despite her antagonizing several of the other contestants — and he was accused by social media users and members of Bachelor Nation of gaslighting Evans during her initial exit.

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