‘The Bachelor’ Cast Calls for Change, ‘It Starts at the Top’

Season 25 of The Bachelor finally got its first Black lead after there was a call for more diversity. But casting still caused a problem for Matt James. Multiple cast members are now calling for change to address some of the problems.

‘The Bachelor’ Season 25’s casting led to controversy

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Fans once again were able to dig up the past of contestants better than producers. A picture surfaced of Rachael Kirkconnell attending a frat party that had the theme of the “Old South Antebellum”. There was still some time before anyone from the show addressed it.

Chris Harrison then did an interview with Rachel Lindsay from The Bachelorette. He defended Kirkconnell saying people need to show her “compassion” and that he’s not part of the “woke police”. 

Fans were disgusted by his response. They created a petition for him to be removed as host of the show.

Chris Harrison won’t host ‘After the Final Rose’

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Kirkconnell finally released a statement after this interview on Instagram. She apologized to communities she harmed and claimed she’ll try to prevent people from making the same mistakes in the future.

Harrison released his own statement apologizing for defending historical racism. He also revealed he won’t be joining the After the Final Rose special. It’s still unknown who will be filling his role. 

The season 25 cast calls for more change

Matt James and Kristin sit down talking to each other on 'The Bachelor'
Matt James and Kristin on ‘The Bachelor’ | Craig Sjodin via Getty Images

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The ladies of season 25 released a statement together after Harrison’s interview denouncing any defense of racism. They also showed their support for Lindsay for being an advocate for BIPOC cast members within the franchise. Some of the contestants talked to Women’s Health about changes they would like to see. 

“Going forward, we definitely want to see casts with people of color included, having a lead who’s open to dating all types of races, seeing all of the experiences of people of color and seeing them in a different light,” Kristin Hopkins said.

“I think it starts at the top so that means making sure that the people in the room are of color, who are making the big decisions,” she continued. “If you don’t know how a person of color feels coming on the show, you’re not going to be able to accurately portray that on screen.”

Khaylah Epps also said the lead’s dating history should be a guide for casting so contestants won’t question themselves. She also talked about the importance of diversity behind the camera.

“It’s nice to have someone on the other side in the interview room who understands what you’re saying and you never have to explain,” she said. “You want to be your most authentic self for yourself and to show the world as well.”

It looks like the current cast is continuing to speak about their experiences on the show. Time will tell how and if the show will change any further.