Last night was the premiere of the 16th season of The Bachelorette, and I have a feeling this is going to be the best season yet – and not just because of the inevitable drama to come. The decision to cast Clare Crawley as this season’s Bachelorette breaks the tradition in recent years of having a contestant from the last season of The Bachelor, typically an enthusiastic 24 year old who is so ready for marriage.
Clare is most memorable for her scathing exit speech to Juan Pablo on the 18th season finale of The Bachelor back in 2014. She then appeared on two seasons of Bachelor in Paradise before seemingly giving up on reality TV for good. That’s why it came as such a surprise when ABC announced Clare as this season’s Bachelorette. While fans were hesitant at first, Clare might be just what we need to see this season.
Clare is a 39 year old Sacramento native and works as a hairstylist. It’s refreshing to see a Bachelor alum pursuing a job she loves, rather than the trope of selling fitness teas and sunglasses on Instagram after the show ends. Clare is refreshingly real, something Bachelor Nation has been missing as of late. For once, it appears that our Bachelorette really is, ahem, here for the right reasons.
Not to say previous Bachelorettes weren’t really looking for love and marriage. However, in recent years it seems that our Bachelorette keeps getting younger. It makes it a bit harder to believe that she's really going to be engaged at the end of the season, especially with the past few seasons not ending in a proposal (ever since Colton jumped that fence, smh).
It was clear in this season's premiere that Clare is ready for love and knows what she wants. As the oldest Bachelorette ever, Clare isn't wasting time. She handled night one with all of the ease and confidence we hoped for, even proclaiming that she already thinks she's met her husband (we’re looking at you, Dale). Spoiler alert: rumors swirling around the internet even claim that Clare leaves the season halfway through to be with Dale, and that Tayshia Adams takes her place as the Bachelorette. TBH, I fully support Clare following her heart and not needing to let the show play out once she knows what she wants.
In light of the tumultuous year we’ve all been having, it’s comforting to watch Clare wholeheartedly go after what she wants, reminding us of what we used to take for granted. If we can learn anything from 2020, it’s to stop taking time and people for granted, and that’s exactly what Clare is doing.
I’m rooting for you, Clare!