The “Men Tell All” special is one of the most anticipated episodes during each The Bachelorette season. After all, the drama comes easy when you put every eliminated contestant in the same room to hash over the season’s gripes before everyone goes on their merry, sponsored Instagram-posting way. This year was a little different, though, because by the time Chris Harrison teased next week’s finale, the biggest controversy surrounding Becca Kufrin’s season was completely unmentioned.
ICYMI, the news out of this season wasn’t Colton’s virginity or Jordan’s Zoolander soundbites; it was the report that contestant Lincoln Adim was convicted of assault. No one expected Adim to be in attendance at Men Tell All—he wasn’t invited—but it was notable that nobody addressed him or the case during the taping of the show. So, we sat down with Chris Harrison and asked him to explain.Read on.
Lincoln’s name never once came up tonight. Considering this was a big story that prompted Warner Bros. to release a statement, why was it avoided at the taping?
Chris Harrison: First of all, Lincoln was not invited and not welcome here. What he did was illegal and against the law, so that is a very easy call. There was no chance he was coming here tonight, no chance I wanted to talk to him or hear his side, because there is no side. What he did was commit a crime. That’s a very easy answer. As far as dealing with it, we wanted [Men Tell All] to remain about Becca, about the guys, and about this journey. And going there…this wasn’t the time or place. There really isn’t much to explain about Lincoln other than he lied, he deceived, he committed a crime, he’s not here, and he’s removed from the show and the franchise.
Warner Bros. said they were looking into how he slipped through the cracks because they do extensive background checks. We haven’t heard anything since. How can the show prevent this from happening again?
Chris: I’ll leave that to the lawyers and Warner Bros., but I will just say it’s very easy for people to go on social media and say it was very easy to discover. [Well,] that’s because you knew what you were looking for. We also know what we’re looking for, and it’s not as simple as everybody thinks it is to find that. It was a bizarre set of circumstances that allowed that to happen, on top of someone [Lincoln] who decided to lie and deceive.
Obviously, Blake and Garrett were not at Men Tell All, but when you sit down with Garrett on After the Final Rose, will you bring up his history of liking bigoted memes on Instagram?
Chris: Possibly. Another thing I want to say is that people need to stop putting Lincoln and Garrett in the same sentence. That’s something that kind of pisses me off. What Garrett did is something you disagree with. That is different than what Lincoln did. Lincoln broke the law. That is a very, very different thing than liking something you don’t agree with on Instagram.
I have no problem with you disagreeing with what Garrett did. I have no problem if it makes you angry, if it makes you sick to your stomach, but just remember it’s something you disagree with. It that wasn’t something that’s against the law, which is what Lincoln did. Just don’t put them in the same sentence. But if Garrett made you sick, that’s fine too. Will we talk about it? Probably. Maybe. I don’t know. It really depends on the situation in the moment. The finale [after show] is live, so a lot of what I’m doing is going on feels, like it was tonight. If it feels like the right time, then we’ll do it.
Sspeaking of the finale, what’s in store?
Chris: Becca’s goodbye [to the runner-up is] easily the most gut-wrenching tearful moment that I have been through. It literally brings her to her knees. You have to watch. Trust me. The exit that you’re going to see is probably in the top five of [most dramatic Bachelor franchise moments ever]. We haven’t even really teased it that much because you don’t have to. When you have the goods and you know what’s coming…just watch. It’s stunning.
So are you saying that the man she says goodbye to is probably going to be the next Bachelor?
Chris: Could be. People are always riding on that wave of enthusiasm. [But then again] everyone’s high on Joe the Grocery Store guy right now. He’s in the mix; great guy. We’ve never had a guy from Buffalo [Jason], very articulate…unlike Joe who doesn’t speak. [Laughs] So, Jason’s in the mix. Obviously number two [Garrett or Blake] might be in the mix. Number one might be in the mix if [he and Becca are] not still together [by then]…you never know. And obviously, you gotta watch Paradise because look who came out of Paradise. Wait and see…