The new season of “The Bachelor” is premiering on ABC early next year, and based on most early indications, one thing feels clear: We’re going to have yet another white guy in the leading role. Luke Pell and Chase McNary are considered largely the only candidates, and it comes after a season of “The Bachelorette” were there were very few standout contenders in terms of diversity.
So how do you change a trend? As network programming head Channing Dungey noted at the TCA Summer Press Tour today (see the tweet below from Reality Blurred’s Andy Dehnart), much of it starts from the very beginning. Deadline has a quote from Dungey in which she elaborates further:
“… [The] show has been very much in cycle, where the first runner-up becomes the lead in the next cycle and it has worked very well for us … What we’d like to do is widen the pool.”
From a business standpoint, we understand what Dungey is talking about here. The show likes to have a built-in lead viewers already know very well and want to root for; that’s why there is already so much talk about the next Bachelor before an announcement is even made. They just need to find stronger minority candidates who can make it far enough on their respective seasons to be considered for this lead role; also, they need leads who are open-minded enough to consider looking at a wide array of suitors. (We’re not trying to imply that any recent Bachelor or Bachelorette was close-minded — it’s all subjective based on the people.)
You can at least argue that there has been a slight more diversity in recent years. Juan Pablo Galavis was a few years back the first Latin Bachelor, while this past Bachelorette in JoJo Fletcher has a Persian background.
Head over here if you do want to get further news on the search for the next Bachelor; meanwhile, sign up at this link to score other TV news on all we cover, sent right over to you via our official CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: ABC.)
"We need to increase the pool of diverse candidates" on The Bachelor, Channing Dungey says, in order to get diverse stars. #TCA16
— Andy Dehnart (@realityblurred) August 4, 2016