We just finished up the emotional two-hour live finale of The Bachelor, which means we’ve still got another dramatic hour to learn the latest about the happy couple and the runner-up. The 17 seasons of The Bachelor have only yielded one marriage, between Jason Mesnick and his runner-up, so the odds are not quite in Sean and Catherine’s favor. So are they together and doing well? Are they still engaged? Have they set a date? Are they BFFs? Does Catherine Lowe not necessarily have the ring you’d like to hear? And who is the next Bachelorette?

The Bachelor Finale Recap: Who Will Win Sean’s Heart? >>>

It’s time to answer all these questions and more in “After the Final Rose,” and Chris Harrison promises we’ll have a bombshell announcement that just came about in the last 24 hours and highlights why this show needs to be live.

Chris welcomes us to the post-finale after party and says that he’ll also be informing us the identity of the next Bachelorette. (Desiree, anyone?) But first, out comes Sean, shirt and all. (I wrote that before the girls in the audience started chanting for him to take it off.)

Sean is Happy

Sean is on top of the world and cannot wait to get the love of his life out on stage. They’ve been in hiding since the show wrapped, but now the secret is out and he can’t wait for them to be together again. He still hasn’t seen the proposal on TV and barely remembers it, but before he can watch that magical moment or see his future bride, he has to talk about Lindsay.

He says she’s perfect in so many ways and that it was a brutal thing for him to send her home. He wishes he could have offered her more closure or at least a real reason. He’s excited to see her, because he did love her, but he’s also dreading it. He was a bit blindsided by what happened with AshLee at the Women Tell All, because he was excited going into it. So he really doesn’t know what to expect, but he’s hopeful for a warm greeting.

Lindsay Faces Sean

It’s the first time she’s seen him since he broke her heart, and she enters with the same grace and kindness she left with in Thailand. There are tears and laughter, of course, and it’s a lot to take in for her. But she says she’s doing good, even though it was hard to see all over again. She wants to know what happened, and he still has no answers for her. His only reason, the only closure he can give, is that he fell deeper in love with Catherine. 

She still wants more specifics, though, that he can’t offer. It’s hard for her to understand, but she praises him for how he handled things. She’s stronger now and knows what she wants in the future, and she really couldn’t be dealing with this any better. Maybe she is the next Bachelorette or wants to be in the future. Or maybe she’s just awesome. It’s gotta suck when the only reason you get is that “The other girl was the one.” 

Sean and Catherine are Reunited (and It Feels So Good)

Catherine enters the studio to kisses and hugs from Sean and roars from the adoring crowd. Someone in the audience mutters, “I love her,” to the lady sitting next to her. Catherine is rocking the diamond ring she hasn’t been able to wear in public for the last few months. She loves Sean with all her heart, and she’s the happiest fairytale princess in America.

People were crying and cheering throughout the proposal, but Sean and Catherine still haven’t seen it, so it’s time for them to get a look. Sean cries while he watches it, particularly when he talks about how he always missed her when they had to say goodbye and that he doesn’t want to say goodbye ever again.

Catherine reiterates what has been the easiest-to-see quality about their relationship: that they are just like they appeared on TV and truly can be themselves around each other. Besties forever.

Next up for discussion is the letter, which Catherine meant to express the very strong feelings she had that she didn’t say. All her other notes were quirky and funny, and this one was a different tone that brought it all home for Sean. He initially thought he was being left at the altar, and it took him two paragraphs to calm down about it. He still has it, and he reads it all the time. What a sap. Love it.

Sean still has tears in his eyes, and Chris calls him a “ball bag.” 

Sean’s Big News

Now for one of the moments we’ve been promised will be shocking. Sean has news that developed in the last 24 hours that proves why this show needs to be live, and it’s that they will be getting married in a televised affair. has date has yet to be set, though, but it will air on ABC at some point in the future. It’s not much of a bombshell and certainly not a surprise, but okay. Chris Harrison offers to marry them on the spot, but they decide to wait. 

Chris wants to know how Sean is so ready to take this step, and he responds that when you know, you just know. He’s come a long way in the last year or so since he agreed to be on TV not once, but twice. It’s been a crazy journey, and now he’s got a fiancee. If only everyone in America could do it this way.

Catherine is set to move to Dallas if necessary, but wherever they end up, they’re happy. The storybook romance will continue, and we’ll all be along for the ride.

And the Next Bachelorette Is?

I think if it’s anyone but Desiree, that will be a bombshell. It’s gotta be, right? And … of course it is! Desiree’s journey for love will start this summer, and the crowd goes wild yet again. She’s so overcome with happiness that she’s already crying, and that means we’re in for a long season. She’s happy for Sean and Catherine, and she hopes that the process will end the same way for her. We hope so, too, Des!

So that’s it for season 17 of The Bachelor, and it appears this one has a decent shot of working out. At least we hope. It’s hard to argue he didn’t make the right choice, but do you think they’ll last? Did you see anything in the “After the Final Rose” show that made you change your mind? What do you think is different about this couple than couples past? And are you happy that Desiree is the next Bachelorette? Do you think her brother will scare off all the suitors?

Thanks again for reading along with us this season, and we hope to see you back to follow along with Desiree’s quest for love! 

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(Image courtesy of ABC)

Bill King

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Emmy-winning news producer & former BuddyTV blogger. Lover of Philly sports, Ned, Zoe, Liam and Delaine…not in that order