Spoiler alert: This story contains minor spoilers about Episode 2 of Clayton Echard’s season of The Bachelor.
Before Season 26 of The Bachelor started, Bachelor Nation questioned ABC’s choice of Clayton Echard as the show's latest lead. Now that we’ve gotten to see a little bit of Echard, fans have taken to questioning the choices of the bachelor himself. While there were certainly thoughts to be had about the Missouri native's judgment – particularly rewarding Cassidy Timbrooks with the group date rose after some truly villainous behavior – it was his bizarre fashion choice that really had Twitter riled up during Season 26’s second episode.
On his first group date, Clayton Echard enlisted the help of Hilary Duff to help him and some of his contestants host a children’s birthday party. Echard did take a turn in the clown costume, but his outfit during the evening portion of the date was what really drew attention. He sported a gray hoodie underneath a plaid navy blue blazer, and Twitter users went nuts, wondering what message his clothes were trying to send:
A hoodie with a sport coat is the perfect combination if you want to look employed but also unemployed. #thebachelor pic.twitter.com/LAOX61bT8AJanuary 11, 2022
Outerwear on top of outerwear? I know they filmed these episodes in the fall, but just how cold could it have been? One fan joked that he was trying to maintain the show's dress code while keeping the weather forecast in mind:
When they tell you to dress formally but it's going to be chilly later:#TheBachelor #TheBachelorABC pic.twitter.com/BGxN6imbEEJanuary 11, 2022
I’m not sure what ABC’s intention was when they had Clayton Echard read mean tweets on The Bachelorette finale because, if anything, it just fueled an already-rabid fanbase. The tweets about Echard’s fashion weren’t too hateful, though. For instance, one fan suggested that if The Bachelor wanted to dress like that, go all the way. Keep us on our toes with the pants and shoes as well:
#TheBachelor Clayton just needs his sweat pants and some dress shoes to complete the lookJanuary 11, 2022
Once they got started, it was open season on the leading man and The Bachelor's wardrobe department, as the jabs continued when the bachelor went on his first one-on-one date, with Susie Evans. Fans on Twitter were feeling the soccer dad vibes with his blue zip-up sweater:
Clayton dressed like a dad picking his kids up from soccer practice in the family minivan #TheBachelor pic.twitter.com/Qvjeur7VHMJanuary 11, 2022
I don't think the dinner sweater on its own would have caused the bachelor so much grief, but having that come right after the hoodie/blazer debacle had fans wondering if anybody there had Clayton Echard's back. One viewer said:
Now I know the stylists are just doing Clayton dirty with this baby blue zip sweater#TheBachelor pic.twitter.com/fmBave7lm3January 11, 2022
This Twitter user saw the fashion faux pas as an omen of things to come, and she might just be right. The drama on Clayton Echard’s season is already through the roof, with double villains Cassidy Timbrooks and Shanae Ankney doing whatever they could to keep Echard’s attention on them:
#BachelorNation sport jacket +hoodie+rose = messed up season.January 11, 2022
The Bachelor returns Monday, January 24, as the dating show will take January 17 off so ABC can air the NFL Wild Card game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams. Maybe when they’re done, we can borrow those football helmets, because every indication is Clayton Echard’s season will continue to be brutal. As we wait for The Bachelor’s return, check out our 2022 winter and spring TV Schedule to see what’s coming soon.
Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Can usually be found rewatching The West Wing instead of doing anything productive.
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