From runner-up to front-runner. Bachelor fans were shocked when two-time Bachelorette finalist, Nick Viall, was announced as the season 21 lead on Tuesday, August 30.
The big reveal of Viall as Bachelor — he’s one of the most polarizing characters to appear on the franchise — immediately solicited mixed feedback from devoted Bachelor and Bachelorette viewers. On Good Morning America on Wednesday, August 31, longtime Bachelor host Chris Harrison discussed the network’s decision to put Viall in the driver’s seat rather than going with a fan-favorite from JoJo Fletcher’s season such as Luke Pell or Chase McNary.
Harrison explained that producers factored in key questions while making their decision, such as: “Who’s the most deserving?” and “Who’s the most sincere?”
“While Luke and Chase were good guys, we kept coming back to Nick, and it’s just crazy enough to work,” Harrison mused – adding that Viall’s Bachelor run may be the “most dramatic season ever.”
Some fans are skeptical that Viall is really looking for love. When asked about the next Bachelor‘s intentions, Harrison didn’t hesitate to set the record straight. He reminded viewers that Viall has fallen in love multiple times and has “sincerely tried to make it work” in the past.
“Unfortunately, he’s just come up a little bit short each time,” Harrison acknowledged. “He’s done his part. He will give himself to this process.”
Viall, who was previously accustomed to the woman taking charge on The Bachelorette, will now have to handle the daunting task of running the show. Harrison, however, thinks Viall can absolutely handle the weight.
“It doesn’t guarantee it’s gonna work…” Harrison reflected. “Things can happen on The Bachelor.”
The longtime host of the franchise is well-aware that the decision to make Viall the next Bachelor isn’t sitting well with everyone. “At the end of the day, this wasn’t an indictment on Luke or Chase as much as it was more of a compliment to Nick,” Harrison noted. “He is that sincere guy that really does wanna make this work.”
The backlash since the reveal hasn’t surprised Harrison. He shared that the response tells him that people’s hearts are in it. “They care about the show. I love and respect that,” he said.
Harrison knows that pleasing all of Bachelor Nation at once is impossible. “You cannot please everybody all the time,” he said. “If you try to please everybody all the time, you please nobody in this business.”
Despite the naysayers, Harrison is convinced season 21 will be epic. “Trust us,” he asked. “Go on this journey with Nick. I think you’ll be happy.”
Bachelor season 21 will premiere in early 2017 on ABC.