Bachelor Nation’s newest lead, Katie Thurston, recently spoke with Good Morning America from The Bachelorette bubble to discuss her upcoming season and how she is preparing to meet her contestants.
“Right now, I’m trying on so many dresses and outfits,” she told ABC’s Kaylee Hartung. “This is a modern-day Cinderella for me.”
Thurston and her fellow Bachelor castmate, Michelle Young, were announced as the Bachelorettes during Matt James’ After the Final Rose special. Each will get a season in 2021, with Thurston’s set to premiere first.
According to Reality Steve, production was set to begin over the weekend. While the 30-year-old said, “I know nothing about the men yet. I don’t know what they look like, I don’t even know how many men there are here,” she has likely since met her contestants.
As they typically do, Bachelor Nation released the names, ages and hometowns of 34 men who are potentially vying for Thurston’s heart. A couple of potential suitors usually do not make it to night one.
Thurston Addressed Chris Harrison’s Absence From Her Season
Thurston was asked how she would respond to Bachelor Nation fans refusing to watch her season without the franchise’s longtime host, Chris Harrison.
“I think they’re on the wrong side of history,” she responded. “I think it’s 2021. So I support Chris in everything that he’s doing and I think this is the best decision.”
Harrison faced backlash for admittedly “excusing historical racism” while discussing embattled contestant Rachael Kirkconnell during an Extra interview. In the aftermath, he announced he was temporarily stepping down. His replacement for James’ After the Final Rose special was the author of Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man, Emmanuel Acho.
“I really feel like this is the big reset,” Thurston continued. “You know, there have been a ton of uncomfortable conversations but important conversations.”
She had previously made her stance on his possible return clear, tweeting, “I stand with other alumni who have expressed that learning & growth require time. I hope that Chris Harrison continues to take more time to step away while sincerely educating himself & dedicating himself to the work. We can all grow and do better with time, and I hope he does.”
ABC later made it official, issuing a statement that Harrison would not participate in the upcoming season of the dating competition. It also revealed, “In his absence, former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe will support the new Bachelorette throughout next season.”
No announcements have been made on Harrison’s future past Thurston’s Bachelorette outing.
Thurston Said She ‘Had to Stay True to Myself’ While on ‘The Bachelor’
Fellow Bachelorette, Young, revealed on Good Morning America she advised Thurston to be true to herself. A sentiment the bank marketing manager echoed when discussing why she called out “bullying” among her fellow Bachelor contestants.
“Ultimately I had to stay true to myself and how I would be in the real world.”
Thurston ruffled feathers in the house but gained support among fans when she revealed “toxic behavior” to the Bachelor after a rumor started spreading that one of the contestants was a sex worker. She did not tell James the exact details of the rumor.
She also clashed with the season’s resident “Queen” Victoria Larson. Larson told Thurston, “I just really didn’t like when you shut me down during the group conversation.” Larson clarified it was when she said, “the trash took itself out” about Sarah Trott.
Thurston refused to give the “Queen” the apology she asked for, telling her, “If that’s how you want to express yourself and you want to be toxic and rude, go for it.”
The Bachelorette is expected to return this summer on ABC.
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