The Bachelor franchise is currently under scrutiny for the way the show has handled racism – both past and present.
While the show has been criticized before due to the lack of a male lead, it wasn’t until this season of The Bachelor with Matt James that the show truly took a turn.
Rachael Kirkconnell was spotted in photos from a Southern Belle party, which are often referred to as plantation-themed parties.
Host Chris Harrison told Rachel Lindsay in an interview that it wasn’t up to him to judge Rachael. In fact, he didn’t believe that anyone was in a position to judge her.
Within days, he issued a statement, saying that his comments were wrong and he should have condemned racism at the time. He also shared he would be stepping back from his hosting duties.
This move caused fans to dig deeper into the franchise and now, it’s being revealed that two major Bachelor stars actually had dates on plantations while filming the show.
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The Bachelor stars Nick Viall and Sean Lowe have both filmed on plantations
According to The Sun, both Nick Viall and Sean Lowe have filmed on locations that have histories involving slavery.
Back in 2017, Nick was in Louisiana with his group of women.
Nick’s group date took place at the Houmas Estate. The date focused on the haunted house, but the episode didn’t go into details about the historical significance of the estate. Instead, the focus was on the ghosts that haunted the estate.
According to the estate’s website, the plantation “contained over twelve thousand acres of the finest quality of cultivable land, and a work force of over five hundred and fifty slaves.”
You can see a clip below.
On the 2013 season of The Bachelor, Sean Lowe also had a plantation date. He took his finalist Leslie Murphy to The Estate Mt. Washington in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The plantation was originally a Danish cotton and sugar factory. According to the LA Times, the property included slave quarters. In addition, records from the plantation included job descriptions for slaves and commercial papers for profitable crops.
While on the estate, Sean and Leslie went fruit picking. Leslie told Sean that she loved him while on the date, taking their relationship to the next level. Again, the show chose to focus on the couple’s relationship rather than educate viewers on the plantation.
Leslie told the cameras that the location was their own secret garden, which she called “her dream come true.”
The Bachelor franchise is seeing many changes in 2021
It’s no secret that The Bachelor franchise are seeing some major changes these days. After Chris Harrison’s interview with Rachel, he shared he would not be hosting The Bachelor: After The Final Rose with Matt James and his chosen woman.
On Thursday, March 4, Chris Harrison broke his silence, revealing he had been doing lots of work behind the scenes to educate himself. He apologized to both Rachel and viewers for the way he handled himself.
Chris has revealed he plans to be back but he didn’t provide a timeline.
Some Bachelor Nation members have expressed that they would feel uncomfortable if he came back to host the franchise. ABC hasn’t revealed any plans to replace him permanently.
The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8/7c on ABC.