‘The Bachelor’ May Welcome A Gay Lead Soon

A man in a black tuxedo standing next to the word 'The Bachelor'

The Bachelor has been an icon of romance and drama for over two decades. Whispers have now become a chorus calling for a historic shake-up: a gay lead. What do producers say?

Keep reading for the latest update.

Bachelor Nation Stars Who Have Come Out As LGBTQ+

In its 20+ years on the air, The Bachelor franchise has struggled with diversity issues. Producers recently admitted the show has an iffy history of addressing racial issues.

Another problem fans have long called the show out for is the lack of representation from the LGBTQ+ community. Of the three main shows in the franchise, only Bachelor In Paradise has featured a same-s*x couple. Demi Burnett and Kristian Haggerty dated during Season 6 of BIP.

But behind the scenes of the ABC show, several former contestants have come out as gay. Most famously, Season 23 Bachelor, Colton Underwood, came out as gay during a televised interview in 2021.

He later detailed his coming out story in Netflix’s Coming Out Colton. Colton Underwood has since married political strategist Jordan C. Brown.

Which other Bachelor Nation stars have come out as members of the LGBTQ+ community besides Colton Underwood and Demi Burnett?

Bachelor Nation viewers met Gabby Windey as a contestant on Clayton Echard’s season of The Bachelor. She was later named joint-lead with Rachel Recchia for Season 19 of The Bachelorette.

She came out in the summer of 2023 and revealed that she was dating a woman. Her relationship with comedian Robby Hoffman is still going strong.

Becca Tilley has been dating singer Hayley Kiyoko since 2018. Click here to read more about Bachelor Nation stars who have come out.

The Bachelor May Welcome A Gay Lead Soon

The possibility of an LGBTQ+ lead is not a new idea in the franchise. In fact, fans and producers have been talking about it for at least three years.

Bachelor executive producers Claire Freeland, Bennett Graebner, and Jason Ehrlich addressed the idea in an interview with Variety following the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour over the weekend.

Ehrlich said the producers “hope to get the opportunity” to cast a gay lead.

“The most wonderful thing is that love is universal and so is the frustration of not finding love,” the producer added.

Graebner has been with the show since 2010. He offered a promising update on an LGBTQ+ season. “During my tenure on the show, the two spinoffs that have been pitched to be the most frequently are a Bachelor for older people and a gay Bachelor. We checked one of those boxes. We’re talking about checking out the other box.”

If it doesn’t happen with the Bachelor franchise, Colton Underwood teased the possibility of an LGBTQ+ dating show from his new production company.

What do you think about the idea of a gay Bachelor or Bachelorette lead? Sound off in the comments.

Jennifer Havener
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