We're days away from the the announcement of our next Bachelor, and it's looking like it just might be Colton Underwood.
A source told ET on Friday that Bachelor producers have their choice narrowed to three men -- Colton, Jason Tartick and Blake Horstmann -- but that Horstmann's chances seem to have weakened. It's thus Underwood and Tartick in the running, with Underwood eliciting the biggest response from fans.
The 26-year-old former NFL player has had viewers divided since he appeared on Becca Kufrin's season of The Bachelorette in May. Some questioned his intentions after he arrived on the show with two famous exes (gymnast Aly Raisman and Bachelor alum Tia Booth), while others applauded his honesty about his virginity and desire to find the right person.
The virginity conversation isn't new to The Bachelor. Past contestants Becca Tilley and Ashley Iaconetti have become Bachelor stars after appearing on multiple seasons of the franchise, but we've never had a virgin Bachelor before. With a show as sexy as this one, is a virgin lead really the right choice? Let's work through the pros and cons.
PRO: He's In It for the Right Person
Underwood isn't waiting for marriage to lose his virginity. He's waiting for "the right heart."
"It sounds a little cheesy," he told ET at the Bachelorette: Men Tell All taping in July. "I'm waiting for someone to match my intensity, someone that's going to be into me as much as I am into them, somebody that I am so madly in love with and that I can share that special moment with. That's what I'm waiting for and that's what I'm looking forward to."
If he's waiting for that special love to have sex for the first time, he must be serious about finding it... right?
CON: There's Not Much of a Mystery About What's Going Down in the Fantasy Suite
Waiting for the right person means the right person -- not multiple people. So there wouldn't be much of an allure about what could possibly be going down in the fantasy suite.
In an interview with ET last year, former Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky revealed that intimacy actually is a big part of the lead narrowing down their final choices. "From talking to the Bachelors and Bachelorettes, most do sleep with the people in the fantasy suites," she shared.
PRO: He's Not Afraid to Cry It Out
If there's one thing we love on The Bachelor it's a good cry, and Underwood knows just how to deliver. The Colton Underwood Legacy founder wasn't afraid to let it all out after his breakup from Kufrin on The Bachelorette. He got teary-eyed on Men Tell All -- and that Bachelor in Paradise breakdown is hard to forget.
"That breakup sucked. I wasn't true to who I was... I'm not going to let people not think I'm good. That's not who I am. I'm supposed to be perfect. Like, this is supposed to be easy. I'm supposed to have the perfect everything... I'm falling apart," he cried to the cameras as soon as his ex hit the beach, and that's exactly the kind of drama we need.
CON: It Might Be Too Soon After Becca and Tia
On the other hand, Underwood's intense reaction to seeing Kufrin again months after his breakup might say something about his readiness to move on, or lack thereof.
While speaking to ET at the Bachelor in Paradise finale taping on Tuesday, Booth seemed to confirm that she and Underwood didn't leave Paradise as a couple, and said she was endorsing another man -- Tartick -- for Bachelor.
"I mean, it was just about two months ago that I was telling him that he really needs to figure himself out before he can fully be with someone else," Booth said, adding that she doesn't know if Underwood is "ready." "If there's a chance that Colton is the Bachelor, I would hope that he is fully ready for that experience knowing that he wants to be engaged at the end of it."
PRO: He's Really, Really Ridiculously Good Looking
When he's not crying, Underwood is quite stunning to look at. Would we mind staring at his beautiful face while following his journey to find love for 10 weeks? Not at all.
CON: There's Other Fish in the Sea
Choosing Underwood as our next Bachelor means the job won't go to Tartick or Horstmann... or someone else entirely.
In an interview with ET at the start of Kufrin's season, ABC executive Robert Mills stressed how important diversity is to the franchise -- but we've yet to see a diverse lead since Rachel Lindsay's Bachelorette season in 2017.
"Both with Arie's season and now this season, the casts have been really fantastic, in terms of diversity, both ethnically, but also in terms of personality types," he raved of Kufrin's season. While producers can continue casting diverse contestants, we still think there's something to be said about having a diverse lead and face of the franchise.
What do you think about ABC's possible choices for Bachelor? Let us know at ET's Bachelor Nation Facebook group here.
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