Tayshia Adams Says Rachel Lindsay Being the First Black 'Bachelorette' Gave Her 'Hope'
Rachel Lindsay's historic casting as the first Black Bachelorette paved the way for others. Monday's episode of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever! saw Tayshia Adams reflect on Lindsay's journey with the franchise, revealing that it "encouraged" her to appear on The Bachelor two years later.
ET learned earlier this month that Adams had stepped in as lead this season after Bachelorette Clare Crawley fell for a contestant roughly two weeks into filming -- making Adams the second Black Bachelorette. However, it seems Adams' appearance on Monday night's episode (which recapped Nick Viall's 2017 season) was filmed earlier this summer.
"I'm from Orange County, California, so this is my world. And what I mean by that is I am very used to being the minority. So, seeing someone on TV have such a strong role and identify with me meant so much," Adams said while speaking with host Chris Harrison and fellow Bachelor alum Natasha Parker via video chat.
Parker continued, saying that if Lindsay didn't go on to become the Bachelorette after Viall's season, "I don't know if I would have gone on the show." "Having her go on The Bachelorette, and she found success. She found her man. It was a huge inspiration to see her do this. She's one of the bigger reasons why I was comfortable to go on this show," Parker explained.
"I think that's what encouraged me to go on it, because she was so true and authentic to herself, and at the end of the day, she got her person," Adams agreed. "She is ... married now, and she got her fairy-tale ending, and that's what I wanted. So, she gave us hope."
In June, ABC announced that Matt James would be the next Bachelor, making him the franchise's first Black male lead in its nearly 20-year history. Adams stepping in for Crawley means that for the first time ever, fans will see two back-to-back Black leads.
"We're in a really special place right now for Black voices to be amplified, people of color's voices to be amplified, and I think that people need to have an open mind. Even with Matt James -- you guys broke the mold, and he is not someone from Bachelor Nation... he's the first Black Bachelor, but Black culture is American culture," Parker shared.
Adams, meanwhile, joked that with one look at James, it wasn't hard to see why he was chosen for the gig.
"He's a good-looking man! He has such a magnetic personality, and I love that he's a fresh face, but we also kind of know him," she said. "I think he's just really going to open up the doors for a lot of people."
Lindsay, whose Bachelorette season aired in 2017, exclusively spoke with ET about Adams' appointment as Bachelorette earlier this month.
"When I stepped in as Bachelorette, I wanted to pave a way for more diversity, for more people who look like me and who didn’t look like the typical lead," Lindsay said. "So to see another Bachelorette of color, I’m thrilled."
"I have been fighting for inclusion, and I‘ve said before that Tayshia would be an excellent Bachelorette, so I am more than happy to pass the torch," she continued. "I am so excited to see what she’s going to do, how she will represent herself and her journey to find love. Now she’s in the driver’s seat, and I’m excited to see her get this opportunity."
ET previously learned that both Adams and Crawley's journeys will be featured on the upcoming season of The Bachelorette, which debuts Tuesday, Oct. 13 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.
The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever! will conclude on Sept. 7 with an episode highlighting Juan Pablo Galavis' season and Crawley's road to becoming the Bachelorette. See more in the video below.
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