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SPOILER: This article contains spoilers for the season finale of The Golden Bachelor.
It was a wild night on the finale of The Golden Bachelor Thursday, one that included inevitable heartbreak, fans turning on the show’s star, a marriage proposal and one big announcement — just not the announcement everyone was waiting for.
It came down to Theresa Nist and Leslie Fhima for Gerry Turner’s final decision. And once they met his family and he finally settled on his future partner — which was Theresa — Gerry tried to let Leslie down gently, but that didn’t go as planned.
The proposal, however, did go as planned and not only are Gerry and Theresa tying the knot, fans will get to see it happen.
Here’s a look at how the season finale of The Golden Bachelor played out.
Letting Leslie down
Gerry told Leslie that she was “the one” during their Fantasy Suite date. But just 12 or so hours later during their last time together before the final rose, she told him that she loved him “very, very much,” and he replied, “That’s such a special sentiment.” Clearly, something had changed.
After Gerry said goodbye to Leslie for the evening with one big proposal and one big breakup looming for the next day, he knew that she could feel that something was off with him. So he turned around and went back to tell her exactly what that was: He was in love with Theresa and that’s the direction he was going to take.
Leslie was understandably upset, accusing him of being a liar because things that he said made it sound to her like he was going to choose her. When she said this was typical of how her life goes, he told her not to think like that.
“No offense. I can think whatever the f*** I want,” she said to him, much to the delight of the mic’d up studio audience watching back with host Jesse Palmer in Los Angeles.
She continued to pour her heart out to Gerry in Costa Rica, leaving him completely crushed afterward. He called the pain of breaking someone’s heart like that a “close second” to the pain of losing his wife.
Their conversation continued during the "After the Final Rose" portion of the evening back in L.A., where she told him that she was so convinced she was the one that she went out and bought a dress and wrote their vows.
“It was the happiest day of my life, except for the day I thought was coming,” she said.
Viewers turn on Gerry
Along with the fact that he broke Leslie’s heart — which goes with the territory of being on the show — Gerry’s approach and some lines he used during his conversations with Leslie didn’t sit well with some viewers.
And after being in the favor of pretty much everyone throughout the entire season, that began to change on Thursday as viewers reacted on social media
#goldenbachelor let’s be honest at the end of the day he’s still a man 🙄
— annie (@AnnieLatty) December 1, 2023
— Gabby Richards (@gabbyrichards) December 1, 2023
Poor word choices Gerry! #GoldenBachelor I'm sure Leslie didnt want to hear it was better with someone else...or she'll find someone after the show 🤦♀️🤦♀️
— Ana Rossi (@a81rossi) December 1, 2023
HE DID NOT JUST SAY HE CHOSE HER OVER LESLIE BECAUSE THERESA KNEW HOW TO NURTURE A SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIP when that’s something Leslie is openly insecure about #GoldenBachelor pic.twitter.com/dSMwHGepzX
— bachelol (@bachelol) December 1, 2023
— RightOnTopOfThatROSE (@SueEllenCrandal) December 1, 2023
— Canadian Bachelor Fan (@TheBachelorsFan) December 1, 2023
— TAM SURBA (@samanthaSWERVa) December 1, 2023
Gerry and Theresa’s big moment
Despite the emotional ending to his relationship with Leslie, Gerry was able to pull it together to share a special moment with Theresa the next day. Complete with him pulling a little bit of a gag once she had joined him at the spot and expressed her own feelings.
“I came to the realization that you’re not the right person for me to live with,” Gerry said to her, leaving a long pause before finishing the thought, “You’re the person that I can’t live without.”
She said that his gag "was so good," and with that, they embraced and he got down on one knee.
“Theresa, I love you one thousand percent. I’m never going to stop believing that every day, I choose you. Will you marry me?”
And she said yes!
The big Golden announcement — no, not that one
Given the success of this inaugural season of the Bachelor spinoff, fans and media have been waiting for and speculating about the announcement of a Golden Bachelorette series, which most assumed would be revealed on Thursday.
Despite host Palmer’s best efforts to tease a big announcement, that one never came. Instead what viewers learned is that the big news was from the new happy couple, Gerry and Theresa. Gerry said that as soon as they can put together a wedding plan, they’re getting married. And Palmer had a little bit more to add to that.
“That’s right Bachelor Nation, save the date because Gerry and Theresa are getting married, and guess what? You’re invited to the wedding. It will be live on ABC on January 4,” the host revealed.
Apparently the wedding plan has been put together, and Gerry and Theresa will be back on TV in a little over a month to tie the knot.
Perhaps fans will have gotten over what Gerry did to Leslie by then.