At the end of a dramatic The Bachelor: After the Final Rose, ABC shocked Bachelor Nation by announcing two Bachelorette seasons for 2021. Fan-favorites Katie Thurston and Michelle Young, the latter of whom was the runner-up in this past season of The Bachelor, joined fill-in host Emmanuel Acho on stage where they simultaneously made the announcement. Acho took over hosting duties for Chris Harrison following the long-time host's departure for racially insensitive comments made while defending another Bachelor contestant, Rachael Kirkconnell.
Thurston’s season will air this summer, and is set to go into production next week. She has high hopes for her turn as the leading lady. “I’m ready to find love, and not just, like, the temporary kind. I’m talking forever. My husband,” Thurston said. “And I’m at a place in my life where I feel like I’m the best version of me. Honestly, I’ve seen it work before, why can’t it work for me.”
Young will be the third Black woman to be the lead on The Bachelorette, following in the footsteps of Rachel Lindsay and Tayshia Adams. While Young was clearly excited to be chosen, she admitted to being a little apprehensive at first about being one of two Bachelorette stars.
“I would be lying if I didn’t say, when they first told me and I thought we were gonna be the Bachelorette at the same time, and so I was a little nervous,” Young said. “But once I found out it was two different seasons, I was here for it. I’m excited that I get to have somebody to bond over with this and share notes as we go.”
Thurston was reportedly an early favorite of network executives, who were then later drawn to Young. So instead of picking between the two, they chose both, and Bachelor Nation couldn’t be more excited.
Watch 'Bachelor' Matt James confront Rachael Kirkconnell over the racial ignorance that ended their relationship:
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