Tayshia's Replacing Clare As The Bachelorette Mid Season

Tayshia’s Replacing Clare As The Bachelorette Mid-Season

August 5, 2020 Updated October 21, 2020

The-Bachelorette-drama-swap
John Fleenor/Paul Hebert/ABC

This is already the most dramatic Bachelorette season ever, and it hasn’t even finished filming yet

At this point, the producers of The Bachelorette are probably willing to do any unprecedented thing to give this season a good twist. The show had to shut down its planned production, which was supposed to start right when the coronavirus pandemic was ramping up in the U.S. There’s also been some controversy about the season’s lead, Clare Crawley, who, at 39, is the oldest female lead in franchise history, and who has a checkered past appearing on Bachelor spin-offs (for the record, we here at Scary Mommy are 100% here for Clare — her age, because you’re never too old to find love, and her experience, because after Peter’s train wreck of a season, we want someone who knows what the eff they want).

Even knowing that the producers would likely pull out all the stops from drama this season didn’t prepare us for this news, though: Apparently, Clare is being replaced mid-season. Two weeks into filming, producers called back some of the men she had eliminated, and flew in Tayshia Adams to star as the Bachelorette.

Um. Don’t get us wrong. We’re here for Tayshia. But we were here for Clare. Mostly we just want to know what the heck is going on. No lead has ever left midway through their season. We didn’t even know that was possible on The Bachelorette.

According to news reports, though, it might actually be good news for Clare. The dominating rumor right now is that she quit as lead because she already found love with one of her contestants, and she didn’t see the point in continuing on and faking it with other guys when she was already sure about one.

What’s a little bit weird about this is that Clare certainly wouldn’t be the first person in Bachelor/Bachelorette history to know early on who she wants to pick. No other lead has ever been able to end the show early, because they have a contract to film the full 11-episode season. Allowing Clare to leave would be an unprecedented move by the show’s producers.

We also have to wonder: Does this mean Clare was communicating with her suitors before filming started? She was only filming for two weeks, and while love at first sight could be real, that’s an awfully short amount of time to get to know someone before giving up an opportunity like being the Bachelorette to be with them. Because of all the disruptions caused by the pandemic, Clare was the first lead in franchise history to know who some of her contestants were before showing up to filming. It’s possible she reached out to some of them, and she might have even struck up a quarantine romance. Stranger things have definitely happened.

And then there are questions about how this is going to work for Tayshia. Will she just have her pick of Clare’s leftover guys? Will more men be re-cast for her? Will she get a full season, or will it be short because Clare already filmed half of it? How much of Clare’s Bachelorette journey will make it to TV before the show switches over to Tayshia?

There are still so many unanswered questions about this season of The Bachelorette, and we’ll apparently have to tune in to get our answers. But with this much drama already going down, you bet we’ll be watching every Monday night.