'Bachelor' Peter Weber on Rachel Lindsay: Where They Stand After Her Criticism (Exclusive)

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Peter Weber and Rachel Lindsay are "cool." 

From his Bachelor casting to opinions about his pool of contestants, the pair haven't always been on the same page -- but as the pilot told ET, that doesn't mean they can't be friends. 

"I did an interview with her, so now we're friends, we're cool," he exclusively shared at ABC's Television Critics Association winter press tour on Wednesday. "I told her, 'Listen, there's always going to be critics.'"

Lindsay was one of the first to speak out against Weber's casting as The Bachelor, telling ET at the time that she was hoping Mike Johnson would win the role instead.   

"Peter seems like a very nice guy. He seems lovely. This is absolutely nothing against him, but how many Peters have we seen before? What season are we on? 24. So, we've seen 24 Peters. I'm bored. And it's nothing personal against him," she shared. 

"I want to be hopeful, but when you have a contestant like Mike Johnson, who seems to check all the boxes, how is he not the Bachelor? I don't understand," she continued. "I'm sure they have some reason for not picking him, and I'm going to trust in that, but at the same time, the system isn't working in giving us a Bachelor who is a person of color. So we need to change the system. Something has to be done. Break the rules, step outside the box, give the people what they want." 

Weber has often shared his support of Johnson -- "I love Mike," he repeated again on Wednesday, but has maintained that he's focused on his own journey as the Bachelor instead of criticism about his casting. 

He spoke with Lindsay about the topic during his appearance on the Bachelor Happy Hour podcast on Monday, however -- where the pair also discussed his season premiere and disagreed about Lindsay's comparison of contestant Hannah Ann to controversial Bachelorette alum Luke Parker. 

“No, not even close. Not even close. Don’t even go there. No," Weber quickly responded to Lindsay on the podcast. "She was intentional, but that’s different."

"Listen. You know him outside of all of that. You know him past the first episode. I’m only talking about first episode," Lindsay explained. "We didn’t know he was like that. First episode it was like, wow, he’s really into this girl. He knows exactly what he wants. He’s very intentional in exactly what he wants to do. And she feels it as well. I’m just saying. We’ve only seen one episode."

"Disagree, but that's fine," Weber replied. "Hannah Ann brought me up to, like, the couch. She had drawn out this beautiful painting for me with her dad. Immediately starts going into her family and how important her family was to her. She's so not like that."

Parker was certainly the most forward contestant on Hannah Brown's season of The Bachelorette, aggressively pursuing her throughout the season. Parker and Brown's relationship blew up during fantasy suite week, after his critical reaction to Brown having been intimate with another contestant (Weber). 

Weber defended Hannah Ann more during an interview with ET on Tuesday, explaining that her stealing him away multiple times on night one was one of the reasons he gave her the first impression rose. 

"She stuck out to me so much, and some people, they have their opinions, but I love the boldness. I loved her being so intentional and showing me exactly why she was there. And I think it's important to note that she's the most sweetest person. She was doing it the right way. She wasn't being mean about it, or necessarily disrespectful to any of the women. She's the sweetest person and it worked, and I appreciated it," Weber shared.

The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. See more in the video below. 

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