What Did ‘The Bachelor’ Cut From Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell’s Fantasy Suite Date?

ABC/Craig Sjodin

Monday’s episode of The Bachelor was noticeably missing a heart-to-heart between Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell, despite being featured in promos throughout the season.

Based on the setting and their outfits, the clip was cut from the night portion of their fantasy suite date. The two discussed race, a prevalent topic throughout the season featuring the franchise’s first Black Bachelor.

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“I really do acknowledge color in every sense,” Kirkconnell, who is white, said to the real estate broker in the deleted scene. “At the end of the day, like, love is love. It doesn’t matter what it looks like.”

The omission comes as Kirkconnell has been embroiled in controversy off-screen. Since the night of the premiere, she has faced increasing accusations of racism and cultural appropriation, eventually causing her to issue an apology on Instagram.

Kirkconnell Has Apologized Amid Accusations of Racism and Cultural Appropriation

After weeks of mounting racism and cultural appropriation accusations, Kirkconnell issued an apology on Instagram.

“While there have been rumors circulating, there have also been truths that have come to light that I need to address,” she wrote. “I hear you, and I’m here to say I was wrong.”

On the night of the premiere, Maddy Bierster shared a photo of Kirkconnell and James on her TikTok with the caption, “girlieeee, remember when you bullied me in high school for liking black guys???”

The Georgia native’s mother, Kimberly, told The Sun the bullying accusations are “slander and libel” and revealed the family issued a cease and desist order to Bierster.

Photos have also surfaced of Kirkconnell wearing Native American costumes and seemingly attending an “Old South” antebellum-style party. She has also been accused of liking photos of her friends wearing Mexican costumes and posing in from of the Confederate flag.

She continued her apology, “At one point, I didn’t recognize how racist and offensive my actions were, but that doesn’t excuse them. My age or when it happened does not excuse anything. They are not acceptable or okay in any sense. I was ignorant, but my ignorance was racist.”

She promised to work on being anti-racist and urged others to use her experience as a “teachable moment.”

Since the apology, Kirkconnell has shared some resources she has used and spoken out in support of Rachel Lindsay as harassment drove the former Bachelorette off of Instagram.

Kirkconnell and James Will Speak on ‘After the Final Rose’

As Kirkconnell is among the season’s top two contestants, she was not at the Women Tell All special. Instead, the first time she will speak out off of social media will be on the After the Final Rose special.

This season will be different since Chris Harrison temporarily stepped down as host. He faced backlash after defending Kirkconnell on Extra, later apologizing for “excusing historical racism.”

In his stead is Fox Sports analyst Emmanuel Acho, who was tapped to host the finale special. The former football player was Lindsay’s choice for the special, noting his ease with uncomfortable conversations as the host of a YouTube series and book of the same name: Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man.

After the Final Rose airs Monday on ABC.

READ NEXT: Former Bachelorette Returns to Instagram After Harassment

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