We are one week away from learning the identity of the next Bachelor on ABC.
The upcoming star of the 2020 season will be announced on the Bachelor in Paradise reunion special, which will air on Tuesday, September 17.
But here's the thing: We already know the identity of the next Bachelor on ABC.
Thanks to a handful of The Bachelor spoilers, led by the ever-reliable Oracle of Bachelor Spoilers known henceforth as Reality Steve, we can very safely announce that Peter Weber will be the man to walk across that stage in a few days.
He's best known for three things:
- Being an affable, nice, mostly harmless pilot.
- Having sex in a windmill four times in one night with Hannah Brown on The Bachelorette, a fact she herself confirmed.
- Not being Mike Johnson.
Indeed, Bachelor Nation mostly likes Peter Weber.
But almost everyone just loves Mike Johnson.
(And that was before we found this photo of Johnson and a baby lamb, below. But cute farm animals aside, the dude was/is crazy popular.)
Immediately upon Brown giving Johnson the boot on this past season, fans started clamoring for him to take up the mantle of The Bachelor.
He's charming, he's funny, he's entertaining and, yes, he's African-American. Diversity is a good thing, right? Especially in this day and age?
One would think. Now, however, we've come to find out that Johnson was never even contacted by ABC executives for the gig.
NEVER! NOT ONCE!
This is both crushing and also confounding, given his popularity with Bachelor Nation and everything else the Big Man had going for him.
Every year, Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss claims that selecting the leading man is a difficult choice and that the network has a number of options to consider...
... and then every year The Bachelor just chooses the second or third-place finisher from the previous season of The Bachelorette - who is always white.
It's easy to complain, criticize, object and to take issue with this pattern, but the following fact is also an easy one for producers to point to:
Ratings go up almost every single year.
Prior to Steve-o's Bachelor spoilers revealing that Weber will be the pick, Johnson told ET that he totally understands why Peter might end up with the job.
"I think Peter looks the part... when he gets a 5 o'clock shadow, he looks good too," Johnson told this outlet, with a bit of his trademark humor.
"I think that Peter's family is terrific," he added.
"I've hung out with his brother, he's awesome. His mom, you know, he's got a little Spanish flair. I think that Peter and his family are just great."
Yet, for all his praise of Weber, Johnson noted that he also might be passed over for Peter because Weber's vanilla - in more ways than one.
"He'd be a safe Bachelor," Mike said. "He won't do anything obnoxious. I think it'd be a good, safe, clean season if he were the Bachelor."
The only upside here, of course, is this:
That's great for them both and we hope it works out. But we still would have preferred to have seen him leading the way this January.
Ever diplomatic, Johnson concluded as follows:
"I will say this ... I do think that [The Bachelor] has worked hard to increase diversity in its casting and is continuing to evolve."
"And as it evolves," he believes, and hopes, along with all of us, "we'll continue to see more diversity from the franchise."