Man, there has been one dramatic plot twist after another for Clare Crawley's Season 16 of The Bachelorette. Now there's yet another new development, and the show hasn't come anywhere near the end of filming. With no confirmed news from ABC on whether or not Clare really did quit her season and that we'll now also see Tayshia Adams handing out roses, we've gotten word that Bachelor franchise host Chris Harrison will actually be replaced for part of the season by former Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher. But, we do know why this switcheroo will take place.
Before you get yourselves all worked up, Chris Harrison's replacement has nothing to do with any behind the scenes troubles, but it does have something to do with our maddeningly persistent health crisis. See, earlier this week, Harrison posted a photo to Instagram where he talked about having just dropped his son off at college. What's the big deal with that, you ask? Well, the entire cast and crew of The Bachelorette has had to be quarantined so that they can try to keep everyone as healthy as possible during filming.
But, according to a source to Us Weekly, Harrison didn't think that leaving to see his kid safely off to school would mean that he'd have to quarantine again before heading back to set. Here's what the source had to say:
The moment he got back, Chris was told he could not set foot back on the set until he went through another 14-day quarantine. The show’s contestants and crew all had to quarantine on the property for 14 days prior to the camera’s rolling. But it didn’t dawn on Chris he’d have to do it all over again if he simply left to take his kid to college.
OK, considering just how fraught this production of The Bachelorette has been, including the massive set back they had just trying to get this season filmed, I do not believe for one second that Chris Harrison didn't know he would have to quarantine again after he got back in town. As everyone in Bachelor Nation has known for months, they shouldn't even be filming The Bachelorette right now, but production was forced to shutdown on the day filming was set to begin back in March, because of that damn pandemic I referred to earlier.
The entirety of Season 16 would have been done with both filming and airing right now, had things gone according to plan. And, the production basically had to buy out a resort in Palm Springs, California so that they could quarantine all cast and crew, not just before filming, but during filming, with the entire season being shot there. Considering the way that set is closed off from the rest of the world, I doubt that Chris Harrison would even be able to leave without dozens of people knowing.
So, I think it's more likely that he and the producers were aware that he'd need another quarantine and would have to miss some shows, but maybe they just now settled on a temporary replacement for him.
JoJo, of course, is a Bachelor Nation favorite, with her 2016 season of The Bachelorette being popular enough to warrant a revisit recently on the show The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons Ever! JoJo and her fiance Jordan Rodgers have also been known to pop up on other Bachelor shows, and were recently seen on The Bachelor: Listen To Your Heart, so she should do just fine taking over for Harrison, especially since she's only expected to act as host for 14 days.
The Bachelorette doesn't have a firm premiere date yet, but we know it should begin airing sometime in September, Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST on ABC. For more on what to watch in the coming weeks, check out our fall TV schedule!