I don't think there's currently a single fan in Bachelor Nation who doesn't feel a bit at sea right now. The Bachelorette was due to be way past done airing by this point in the year, and we should have been nearing the end of another beach-side season of Bachelor in Paradise, but the pandemic had other plans. Along with the standard slate of shows getting pushed back or cancelled, we are also now dealing with a lot of questions regarding the state of Clare Crawley's time as our leading lady, and former star of The Bachelor, Nick Viall, is among those many with "so many questions" about the whole thing.
Even though Nick Viall was considered to be one of the franchise villains for a bit, he's now been a member in good standing with Bachelor Nation for enough time that fans trust his opinion about the rumors and many happenings in the franchise. So, it's pretty cool to hear that Viall is really just like the rest of us in being confused about how everything is going to go down on Clare's upcoming Season 16 of The Bachelorette, especially considering that no one behind the show or the network has confirmed that she quit during filming and will be replaced by Tayshia Adams during the season.
So, just what does Nick think about all the talk surrounding Clare, Tayshia and the new season of The Bachelorette? Here's what he told Entertainment Tonight, and I think lots of fans will echo his sentiments:
I just have so many questions about how things are going to play out. ... It sounds like what Tayshia is going into is an incredibly unique experience that no one else is going to have the ability to relate to. I’m guessing Tayshia is going to be excited and she'll do well. Tayshia's going to have the benefit of following Clare in whatever Clare did right. I feel like Clare might be the storm and Tayshia might be the sunrise ... That's just what I'm hearing. We don't really know what they're gonna show, we don't know what's been filmed... there's so many questions I wanna know the answers to.
Well, he ain't kidding that there are truly a lot of questions that fans want answers to right now. When reports came out in early August that Clare quit her season just a couple of weeks into filming, it was said that she had actually fallen in love with one of her suitors and decided to become engaged to him instead of just seeing how things would play out with the other dudes cast for her. We were also told that Tayshia was plucked from the pool of Bachelor also-rans (she was on Colton Underwood's 2019 season, as well as BIP last year) to take over.
As I mentioned, though, none of this has been confirmed. And, while I understand that the producers would want to hold on to as many surprises as possible for Season 16, this particular kissing cat appears to be out of the bag, so their insistence on pretending that none of this is happening, has (understandably) annoyed a lot of fans.
As you can imagine, because no one connected to the show is acknowledging the Clare / Tayshia switch, we don't know anything else about how this season will play out. Will Clare get two full-sized episodes of her own before riding off into the newly-engaged sunset? Will Tayshia have to date Clare's recent rejects? Is Tayshia going to get a full season of dating and rose-giving on screen, or will she be obviously short-changed when it comes to screen time? Seeing as how Clare had to stay at the resort where they were forced to film this year (so as to not further spoil the twist), might she be seen past The Great Quitation on her love journey, or to give Tayshia advice?
All of these questions and more are swirling, because right now, we really have no way of knowing what to expect. From what Nick has heard so far, though, it sounds like Clare will be doing things her own way from the word go, while Tayshia will get to be a more traditional Bachelorette in a very non-traditional situation, so it will be intriguing to see how the two (potential) styles play in one season.
We, along with Nick Viall, can finally see what the hell this season will bring when The Bachelorette debuts on ABC, on October 13. To see what else is coming to the small screen, check out our fall TV premiere guide!