As you've likely heard by now, there's good reason to believe that Tayshia Adams will replace Clare Crawley as the Bachelorette for the show's 16th season.
At this point, the move has yet to be confirmed with an official announcement, but enough reliable sources are reporting it that we feel safe saying it's a done deal.
Now, it's time to examine how and why this happened, and the ways in which it might forever change the Bachelor/Bachelorette franchise.
Obviously, from the very start, Clare found herself in a position that no previous Bachelorette had ever been in.
She was supposed to have started filming several months ago, but just like everything else that was scheduled between mid-March and now, Clare's season was delayed indefinitely due to the coronavirus.
But the show remains massively popular -- and it could draw its biggest ratings yet with everyone still stuck at home -- so producers got creative and figured out a way to film without endangering the cast and crew.
You know how the contestants usually travel all over the world to exotic locales like Paris and ... Cleveland?
Yeah, you won't be seeing any of that this season.
On July 19, production began at a La Quinta resort in Southern California, where Clare and her crop of contestants had been quarantining for two weeks.
So it's a few months late, and the whole season will need to be shot inside a single hotel, but at least filming is finally underway.
Or at least it was, until Clare "blindsided" producers, in the words of one insider, by announcing that she wished to quit filming.
Apparently, Crawley fell in love with contestant Dale Moss.
In fact, it seems her feelings were so strong that she refused to leave her room, as she could not bring herself to film with the other men.
Accounts differ with regard to the timeline, as some say Clare and Dale met and fell in love instantly just 12 days ago, while others say they fell for each other online during the four-month delay in production.
Whatever the case, the upshot was the same -- producers had dozens bachelor and no Bachelorette.
"Producers are scrambling to figure out what to do," a source told Life & Stile at the time.
"They are frantically trying to pick up the pieces without having to start over completely."
Enter Tayshia, who was apparently quarantining in secret, just in case the show needed a backup Bachelorette.
One source assured Life & Style that Tayshia will step in where Clare left off and take over the rest of the season.
"Execs hope the guys will still want to participate; it took them time to test them all for COVID and they’ve already been quarantined at the resort for 14 days." the insider says.
Here, accounts differ again, with some claiming Tayshia will be forced to choose among the remaining contestants, and others insisting that Clare's rejects will be called back to give Tayshia a full slate of 30 (well ... 29, if Dale left with Clare) contestants to choose from.
It's a bizarre twist, but it's now been confirmed by none other than the Bachelor Nation spoiler master himself, Reality Steve:
"There’s no reason for Tayshia to be in La Quinta unless she’s being asked to film something," Steve tweeted this week.
"Which means that she would be the Bachelorette. So if you ask me if Tayshia is going to be the Bachelorette from this point forward, my answer would be yes," he added.
The question now is, what prompted producers to keep a backup Bachelorette on hand?
Did they anticipate having problems with Clare, or did they simply decide not to take any risks in the age of Covid?
Either way, it seems that Clare's loss is Tayshia's gain.
And it sounds like we're in for a season of The Bachelorette that's completely unlike anything we've seen before.
We'll have further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.