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Clare Crawley‘s season of The Bachelorette was postponed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Instead of airing in May 2020, the show was pushed back months. Now, it finally has a premiere date, and fans are anxiously waiting to see the love story of Crawley and Tayshia Adams.

'The Bachelorette' with Clare Crawley
‘The Bachelorette’ with Clare Crawley | Paul Hebert/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

Why are there two leads for ‘The Bachelorette’ Season 16?

Although ABC has not formally announced the change, various news outlets have reported that both Clare Crawley and Tayshia Adams will be starring in The Bachelorette Season 16. The rumors began on July 30, 2020, stating that Crawley fell in love after 12 days of filming and refused to continue the season, according to Life & Style.

A few days later, on Aug. 3, 2020, E! News reported that Adams is taking the hairstylists place to finish out the season. 

“The producers have told her that the season will still lead with Clare and her short-lived journey, and will show Clare falling in love with one of her suitors,” an unnamed source told E! News. “Clare will then conclude her journey and announce that Tayshia is the lead.”

This situation has never happened before in the franchise’s history, so it should make for a unique season. ABC has not commented on the lead switch, and many fans speculate they want viewers to watch how the change happens on their TV screens this fall. 

When will ‘The Bachelorette’ Season 16 air on ABC in 2020?

Typically, The Bachelorette premieres in mid-May; however, filming for Crawley’s season did not get underway until mid-July 2020. The fall programming for ABC on Monday nights typically features Dancing with the Stars in the 8 p.m. slot, so the network had to rearrange. 

This fall, The Bachelorette will air on Tuesdays instead of the usual Bachelor Mondays.

Along with several new teasers for the season, ABC announced the premiere date as Oct. 13, 2020. 

“The wait is over,” the promotion reads on Instagram. 

However, disgruntled fans are upset they still have six weeks until the premiere of the show.

There’s controversy over the latest promo

Crawley is the oldest lead on the show — at 39 years old (38 when she was chosen). ABC’s latest promo shows the star posed with a leg coming across the poster — similar to the 1967 film, The Graduate. The movie, starring Dustin Hoffman, is the story of a 21-year-old man who is seduced by an older woman.


‘The Bachelorette’ Fans Found the 1 Silver-Lining To a COVID-19 Season

“It’s so cheap that Bach went with the ‘cougar’ theme,” one fan wrote in the teaser’s comments. “I wonder if that’ll be a season-long thing.”

Fans do not like what the promo is implying. They are appalled by the way the franchise is mocking Crawley’s age. Then other fans have never even seen the movie to be able to understand the poster at all.