Former Bachelors and Bachelorettes React to Arie Luyendyk Jr.’s Finale: “Why Are They Filming This”

Arie luyendyk jr emily maynard bachelor bacheloretteSeason 8 of The Bachelorette with Emily Maynard. (Photo by Donna Svennevik/ABC via Getty Images) ARIE, EMILY MAYNARD

“Awkward,” “awful,” “terrible” were just a few adjectives used across the internet to describe the season 22 finale of The Bachelor when Arie Luyendyk Jr. broke off his engagement with fianceé Becca Kufrin on national television. Fans of the franchise weren’t the only ones taken aback by the moment.

“That was wild,” Chris Harrison said on Good Morning America on Tuesday, March 6. “Sixteen years of this and that was breathtaking. It was a lot even for me. It’s a lot to take in.”

Along with Harrison, former Bachelors like Sean Lowe, Jason Mesnick and Ben Higgins all took to Twitter to express their discomfort with the unedited footage, as well as previous Bachelorettes Trista Sutter and JoJo Fletcher. In an interview with The Knot and other reporters last December (prior to breaking off his engagement), Luyendyk noted that he was in contact with Lowe, who also appeared on Emily Maynard’s season of The Bachelorette back in 2012.

“I really sort of leaned on Sean just because I know Sean from my season,” Luyendyk said. “We’ve kept in touch through the years and he has such a success with Catherine. And I actually did meet Nick [Viall] for the first time a couple of days ago. I happened to be in Los Angeles at a friend’s book signing.  So, we met there and we talked about his struggle post show. But I think Sean has been a great example for me and I really lean on him and Catherine and their advice.”

On Tuesday, Harrison confirmed that Luyendyk broke off his engagement about six to eight weeks after his initial proposal. Below, see the real-time reactions from familiar franchise faces who were floored by the execution of the finale.

Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher

(ABC/Matt Klitscher)

The Bachelor's Ben Higgins

Will Ben Higgins propose to Jo Jo or Lauren B. on the finale of The Bachelor? ABC/Matt Dunn

Luyendyk, meanwhile, teased the dramatic moment. “I know people are going to be hard on [me],” he said in an interview last week. “I made a mistake. And I’m prepared for the backlash. But all I can say is I had to follow my heart.”

THE BACHELOR – ÒEpisode 2210Ó – The compelling live three-hour television event will begin with America watching along with the studio audience as Arie Luyendyk Jr.Õs journey to find love comes to its astonishing conclusion. The Bachelor prepares to make one of the most difficult choices of his life, having narrowed down the field to two women with whom he is madly in love – Becca K. and Lauren B. – and told both of them that he loves them. Who does Arie, after much soul-searching, see as his future wife? Find out on the season finale of ÒThe Bachelor,Ó MONDAY, MARCH 5 (8:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on The ABC Television Network. (ABC/Paul Hebert)

Part II of the Bachelor season finale airs Tuesday, March 6, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

About the Author

Esther Lee
Esther Lee
Esther is the Senior News Editor at The Knot. A self-proclaimed pop culture enthusiast, she appreciates a good celebrity interview just as much as she adores Nancy Meyers movies. You can find her kicking off her mornings with barre and a green juice, traveling and exploring new cultures, and rapidly scrolling her feed for the latest and greatest news. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @theestherlee.