While the Internet is freaking out that Arie Luyendyk Jr. is the next Bachelor, ABC's powers that be are at peace with the surprise decision.
Despite a fan base clamoring for Peter Kraus (among others) from the most recent season of The Bachelorette, Arie got the nod. Why?
"The timing seems right," Robert Mills, ABC Senior V.P., told ER. "He's incredibly sincere. He's dated a lot of women since Emily [Maynard]."
"He says he's never been in love since Emily, and that's a really interesting story to try to bring to completion this season on The Bachelor."
Arie and Emily met in 2012, though. Why wait this long to bring him back? Mills says again, it was all about timing then, and now.
It worked out best for Sean Lowe (and Juan Pablo Galavis, Chris Soules, Ben Higgins and Nick Viall) then, and it's Arie's time in 2018.
Simple as that?
Not for many fans, who felt Peter Kraus from Rachel Lindsay's season of The Bachelorette was an obvious choice. Not so, says Mills.
Kraus is the man, no doubt about it, but wasn't "100 percent ready" for the job. "Peter was absolutely in discussion," the exec shares.
"He sort of alluded to that as well. I think at this point in Peter's life, the breakup with Rachel was still very raw," he explains.
"Sometimes you move on quickly, sometimes you don't. I think that, for him, there were still residual feelings, and it was a very real breakup."
"They all are, but this was tough. I think the finale, when that aired and everything after that was also hard on Peter. I think he just didn't know."
"I think Peter probably would have done it and been an amazing Bachelor, but I also don't know if he, himself, knew if this was the time."
"I think we'll always be in touch with Peter, and there might be a time... It might be a year from now, when it's better for him."
"Peter was an incredible fan favorite, which I think was great, but I also think [there is a double-edged sword with that," Mills says.
"If it's not the season that the fans want, which, you know, might have been if Peter might not have been ready to commit 100 percent?"
"That's also disappointing," he says, so even if Kraus may be the most popular man in Bachelor Nation doesn't make him the best pick.
"I think it was just both sides saying, "You know what? It's not 100 percent right. Let's wait and do this when it's 100 percent right."
"We develop real feelings and relationships for these guys. It's hard. I love him, and I hope we do something with Peter down the road."
"He's a great guy. And that came through on his season of The Bachelorette, why so many people like him."
For now, though, "Arie is somebody we actually talked to all the way back, you know, when he was the runner-up on Emily's season."
"And, you know, I don't think the right time was then. This year, we met with Arie, and he's really built a life for himself in Arizona."
"He still does the race car driving thing, but he's also built a very big business in real estate. He has a life now to share with somebody."
"The timing seems right. I think that will definitely be his compelling narrative, that he has not been in love since Emily."
"Arie is in the right place in his life to find somebody," Mills says. "He really has a life to go back to. He wants kids."
"He wants what Emily has."
"He's in that place. We talked to people, we talked about people from Rachel's season, from JoJo's season."
"I don't think there was anyone who was as ready for this as Arie is," says the ABC shot-caller.
Will fans agree, and tune in as they always do? Or was this pick a little out of left field? Discuss.