The rumors turned out to be exactly true. Though news of the casting leaked
hours before the official announcement, Chris Harrison appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live
to announce the star of The Bachelorette
season 13. The show will make some long-overdue history. Rachel Lindsay will be the next Bachelorette
and the first black lead in the franchise's combined 33-season history between The Bachelor
and The Bachelorette
After "recapping" the show, which is now custom for Kimmel, Chris Harrison was wheeled out and finally managed to do some hosting. Harrison poked fun at his melodramatic (and, frankly, useless) presence on the show before finally bringing Rachel on stage.
Of course, once Rachel was brought out, Jimmy Kimmel asked Rachel about the big spoiler in the room. Since Rachel is still in the running for Nick's heart on The Bachelor, her casting serves as a pretty big reveal that she and Nick do not ultimately end up together. Rachel explained, however, that filming is about to begin in a "couple of weeks," so it's likely that ABC decided to officially announce her casting before it really leaked out ahead of time.
Rachel went on to discuss the show approaching her to become the next Bachelorette. "You know, it wasn't that long that I got off the show that I was approached, but I honestly thought they were doing it just to make me feel better from the heartbreak," she said. "Then as it kept going, I realized, okay, they're actually serious about this thing."
"I am excited," Rachel continued. "I'm ready to find love."
Rachel also described the type of man that she is looking to find in her upcoming season of The Bachelorette. "I'm looking for someone who is ready for what I'm ready for. At this point in my life, 31, I'm ready to find a husband, someone who's ready to start a family. ... I'm looking for someone who can make me laugh, a great smile, physically."
This is a big step forward for the franchise, as half-Persian JoJo Fletcher is the only real women of color that The Bachelorette has cast as a lead. Meanwhile, the infamous Juan Pablo Galavis is the only ethnically diverse man to lead The Bachelor. No offense to either -- well, maybe a little offense to Juan Pablo -- but Rachel appears to be a much better pick as an entertaining TV personality than either former lead.
What do you think? Are you ready for Rachel to be the next Bachelorette? Is she the right choice? Did The Bachelorette and ABC announce this too soon? Are you upset that things don't work out for Nick and Rachel? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
(Image and video courtesy of ABC)