Host Chris Harrison admits that the upcoming Bachelorette season’s big twist — launching the show with not one but two leading ladies: Vancouver dance instructor Kaitlyn Bristowe and California’s constantly crying waitress Britt Nilsson — was “more than a little weird” when they started shooting.
“I thought it was going to be really awkward for the girls, but it ended up being more awkward for the guys. They got out of the limos and there were two women they had to get to know and impress,” Harrison tells Yahoo TV. “Guys are bad at these introductions anyway. They have very little game and it’s hard enough to come up with something that isn’t too cheesy and that makes a good first impression." The situation was strange for the host as well. “I usually stand out there and root for one person,” he says. “Having to really play Switzerland and trying to make sure they are both as happy as they can be given the situation was a very different job for me. But pushing through those uncomfortable moments is one of the beautiful things about the show.”
Kaitlyn and Britt, on the other hand, tackled the tough dynamic like champs. “My hypothesis was that they would come out swinging," says Harrison. "Instead of being antagonistic or adversarial, they were incredibly empowered. It was like they decided, ‘Only one of us will be the Bachelorette, but we can do this together.’ They laughed at the same jokes, talked about how hot the guys were, and judged the arrivals.”
After night one, there will only be one woman standing. "As soon as they pick which woman is Bachelorette, she gets everything that comes with it and we go about the season like we normally do.” That means it’s back to business as usual with far-flung travels, helicopter dates, spa shenanigans, and, of course, drama from go. “It is a very aggressive first night. You could never put this many type-A dudes with that much testosterone running through their veins in the same room competing for the same woman without guys rubbing each other the wrong way,” he reveals. “It was the closest we’ve come to a full-on throwdown in the history of the series. It’s mostly a good group, but there are always a few rotten apples.”
Harrison hints that the some of those bad seeds might even be in his picks of five guys to watch. Click through to get the scoop.
The new season of The Bachelorette premieres Monday, May 18 at 9 p.m. on ABC.