Spoilers ahead for the "Men Tell All" episode of Katie Thurston's season of The Bachelorette.
Season 17 of The Bachelorette is as dramatic as could be expected with hometowns fast-approaching and one of the remaining suitors taking himself out of competition to go be with his son this week, but then the show took a break from the heartache for the annual "Men Tell All" episode that brought the eliminated men back and unleashed them to drop the gossip that didn't make earlier episodes' final cut. In the process. Connor Brennan was called upon to relive the experience of being cut from The Bachelorette because his kissing wasn't enough for Katie, but he found some surprising redemption by the end thanks to an audience member.
After being sent home by Katie Thurston due to his kissing skills not generating the kinds of sparks she was looking for, Connor Brennan reached out to some exes for some second opinions, but reconnecting with an ex wasn't what redeemed his bad rap as a bad kisser. Just take a look at the twist that a whole lot of people couldn't have seen coming!
Connor Brennan's interview with co-hosts Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe (who had previously been joined by fellow Bachelor Nation alum and current fiancé Jason Tartick) was interrupted when a woman stood up from the audience and proclaimed that after watching Connor on the show, she couldn't believe he'd be a bad kisser. So, she walked down from her spot in the audience and shared a big kiss with Connor, seemingly out of nowhere. And then some more kissing on center stage before his time in the spotlight was over!
The woman, who identified herself as Tara, caused quite a stir, and I'm not sure whose reaction I loved more: Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe's or the crowd of Connor Brennan's fellow former suitors cheering him on. That said, I for one have to say that it seems awfully staged to me. There were no issues with her audio despite the fact that a random audience member wouldn't have been mic'd up, and I like to think that Bachelor Nation has some security precautions in place to stop things like this from happening if they're not planned ahead of time.
If it was staged, I'm inclined to think that most of the people on stage didn't know about it, though, because the reactions seemed pretty genuine. After all, this is a group of people known for competing in a dating reality show, not a pool of Oscar-winners who can sell performances. If it wasn't staged, it was pretty cute, but also runs the risk of giving future audience members ideas of how to turning spectating into participating. Plus, you know, the pandemic that should preclude some spontaneous spit swapping on camera!
Either way, I think it's safe to say that Connor Brennan redeemed himself and hopefully has guaranteed that his Bachelor Nation legacy won't be the guy who was eliminated for being a "trash kisser." And hey, maybe it's for the best that the kissing issue came out now rather than later – I can't be the only one who remembers when former Bachelor star Colton Underwood got roasted by Tayshia Adams and a couple others on Bachelor in Paradise for being a bad kisser! And at least he won't be remembered for comparing Katie to his mom, like Mike Planeta.
Speaking of Bachelor in Paradise – while it's pretty safe to say that Colton Underwood won't be one of those participating in Season 7, the next season is fast-approaching and will premiere on Monday, August 16 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC, following the end of Katie Thurston's season of The Bachelorette, which may or may not come to the ending that fans are hoping for.