Phew! This week in Bachelor Nation news has been a true roller coaster! First, we had all the live drama between Peter Weber, and his The Bachelor finale-mates Madison Prewett and Hannah Ann Sluss. Then his mom Barbara Weber tore her son and Madi a new one on live TV, Peter and Madi broke up and now...Now it's been confirmed that Season 16 of The Bachelorette, a.k.a. Clare Crawley's season, has been postponed.
I'm sure you can imagine why producers have decided not to go ahead with filming, but here's what happened. According to Entertainment Weekly, Warner Bros. Television, which produces The Bachelorette, released a statement explaining that, that's right, coronavirus fears are just too great for those behind the company to feel totally safe starting production on the show, which had been slated to begin today. Here's the full statement:
With the rapidly changing events related to COVID-19, and out of an abundance of caution, Warner Bros. Television Group is halting production on some of our 70+ series and pilots currently filming or about to begin. There have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on any of our productions, but the health and safety of our employees, casts and crews remains our top priority. During this time, we will continue to follow the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control as well as local officials and public health professionals in each city where our productions are based.
Man, I totally get it. But, that doesn't mean that I'm not bummed, especially since the statement gave no word on whether or not Clare's season will be scrapped entirely, or if they're just doing a cautionary shutdown for a few weeks before starting up again. Considering how things are going with the outbreak of the virus, that's probably because they simply don't know right now.
We had already heard that Clare's time on The Bachelorette was likely going to be kept within the borders of the U.S. due to coronavirus concerns. First, the production halted a planned trip to film in Rome, Italy, then we heard spoiler info from Reality Steve which said they'd actually decided to stop any international travel plans altogether.
Obviously, travel isn't the only worry with a show like The Bachelorette. While Warner Bros. was very clear in stating that no one on any of its shows has tested positive, if the show left the confines of Bachelor Mansion, there would be a possibility of someone catching it. And, we all know that Clare and the bachelors who've been chosen to appear on her season would be doing a lot of touching and swapping a lot of spit, so there would be almost no way to control the spread within that population if it got to them.
Speaking of both the possibility of The Bachelorette having to deal with the coronavirus and Clare's bachelors. Twitter has had some fun thoughts on what this postponement could mean. For instance, there are some people who think that filming actually can continue:
You probably won't be surprised at the impressive number of people who support this idea. And, while I can freely admit that I'd be down to watch The Bachelorette: Clare's Quarantine, do we really want these folks trapped together for two months? Do you know what kind of madness that amount of cabin fever might produce? It would turn into The Purge in that damn mansion!
I went on record just a couple of days ago and said that I was disappointed by the men who've been chosen for Clare's season. She'll be 39 in about a week, yet most of the men who were picked for her by production are in their 20s to early 30s. Well, it sounds like a lot of folks agree with my displeasure, and hope that the production delay can take care of it:
My guess as an answer to this question? No. People are probably going to be very nervous about flying, meeting lots of new people, sharing living spaces with them and getting all kissy with a woman who's kissing 29 other dudes for at least a few months. But, this could still mean that some of these too-young men drop out and they have to be replaced. If that's the case, we could (maybe...possibly) see more older guys on Clare's Bachelorette season, should it pick back up at some point.
That leads me to another question, actually. What if they can't start filming The Bachelorette in a few weeks and have to scrap the whole thing this year? Will Clare still be our next Bachelorette or will they abandon her season and go back to the drawing board with another woman in her early 20s? Look, I really just want the coronavirus to stop and everyone to be / stay healthy, but I'm also gonna be super pissed when things get back to normal if they skip over Clare. She didn't start this pandemic so they shouldn't make her pay an unnecessary price for it!
Luckily, if you still need a Bachelor Nation fix, we have The Bachelor: Listen To Your Heart coming up on April 13 (the finale's been filmed and everything), so we won't be without romantic reality show drama for long. You can stay tuned to CinemaBlend for the latest in Bachelorette news and spoilers in the meantime!