During The Bachelorette: After the Final Rose, host Kaitlyn Bristowe “address[ed] the elephant in the room” by having the 28-year-old former professional football player read some of the “mixed reactions” to his season 26 appointment.
“I thought there’s nothing like facing your haters head on,” the Dancing With the Stars alum, 36, explained of the decision. “I pulled a few of the more interesting comments.”
One tweet read, “They found 30 women desperate enough to date this guy? Where!?” Another Twitter user penned a biting poem, reading, “Roses are red, violets are blue, Clayton is the Bachelor and I just puked in my mouth.”
After Clayton gamely read the tweets, the athlete said, “Listen, I read everything and see everything, so that was pretty PG compared to some of the things I’ve read.”
News broke in September that the Missouri native, who competed for Michelle Young’s heart on season 18 of The Bachelorette, will star on the ABC show in 2022. Three months later, Kaitlyn exclusively told Us Weekly why she thought fans were having issues accepting the retired NFL player.
“I kept thinking, like, if you’re gonna make him the Bachelor, you gotta show more of him and why he’s gonna be our next Bachelor. Because, I mean, if we’re watching, we’re rooting for Rodney [Mathews] [to be the Bachelor] — someone that we’re like, ‘Whoa, we fell in love with that person and we’re rooting for them to find love,’” the Canada native explained on Tuesday. “With Clayton, we’re kinda like, ‘What? Oh, OK.’ And now we’re rooting for him, but we don’t know much about him.”
The “Off the Vine” podcast host noted that his season would be a “really great” one, saying, “I can tell you this guy, Clayton, is one of the most sensitive, in tune with his emotions kind of person that I’ve ever met. And I think that will make for a good Bachelor. It’s gonna be extremely difficult for him because of how, you know, sensitive and emotional he is. But that’s such a great quality [that] you wanna see in a Bachelor.”