A new curve ball and a new villain emerged Monday night on “The Bachelorette.”
Following last week’s jaw-dropping rose ceremony, Tayshia Adams announced that Blake Moynes, who first showed up hoping to win over both Claire Crawley and Tayshia on the previous season, would be joining the other 14 men in the quest to win Katie Thurston’s heart.
It turns out Adams was the one to suggest Blake return for Katie’s season, with the former Bachelorette stopping by “Good Morning America” on Tuesday and saying that Katie said from the beginning she wanted to get engaged at the end of of the season and, in her opinion, Blake had everything Katie was looking for.
“I just know that he has a really good heart,” Tayshia said. “He’s genuine, he’s sincere and he is ready for marriage.”
As for the fairness of Blake entering the season so late, Tayshia said it’s “difficult” for both the other guys as well as for the Bachelorette, but that “love is the end goal” so sometimes it’s necessary to take “uncomfortable risks.”
Blake did receive a chilly reception from the other suitors — especially after it was revealed he would get the first of two one-on-one dates.
Their day of horseback riding turned personal after Blake inquired about Katie’s sex-positive outlook. That led to her retelling her story about experiencing a non-consensual sexual encounter and opening up about how the guilt she suffered eventually gave way to her openness about discussing “healthy sex.”
Blake’s declaration that he’d never do anything to make Katie feel “scared” of him “in any form” won him the date rose.
The evening was capped off with a private concert by “American Idol” winner Laine Hardy, who performed his new song, “Memorize You.”
Later, 13 of the men competed in an intense game of “Bash Ball” — a mash-up of basketball and rugby — emceed by Bachelor Nation favorites Wells Adams and Franco. Katie abruptly ended the battle when Michael got hurt following a cheap shot by Hunter.
However, at the afterparty, Hunter wooed Katie by showing his “dad” side and broke out some pictures of his kids. The gesture earned him the date rose.
Katie’s one-on-one date with Andrew S., who is Black, included a candid conversation about their future together, particularly her feelings about the possibility of raising biracial children.
“One of my exes … she was worried about, you know, having mixed children,” he recalled. “And I know her heart and I know her character and she’s not racist … but she was worried about going to a grocery store and someone asking, ‘Are these your kids?’ And that was tough for me.”
After acknowledging that she felt “so naive as a white woman of the struggles you have experienced as a Black man, especially a Black man trying to date a white woman,” she added firmly, “I think our love could be so beautiful and our children would be just as beautiful as that love, and I don’t give a flying f— when people want to look at me.”
Explaining that Andrew S. made her laugh and that they “shared a lot,” Katie rewarded him with the date rose.
Meanwhile, a new villain emerged on Monday. Hunter, not satisfied with earning a rose, hogged up Katie for a good portion of the pre-rose ceremony. His actions angered the other men, who feared their chances of impressing Katie were dwindling fast.
The rose ceremony brought Katie a step closer to finding love as Andrew M., Josh and Quartney were sent home.
As for how Katie is doing this season, Tayshia told “GMA” she has “done a really good job navigating a lot of the drama and weeding out some guys that are just not there for the right reasons” — though she did also tease that Katie is “in for quite a loop.”
“I mean, she’s really confident and strong in herself. She knows who she is,” Tayshia added of the new Bachelorette. “I think she’s definitely hitting things head on and she doesn’t like to just leave things out in the open. She wants to get answers and she’s been doing a really good job.”
If you or someone you know experienced sexual assault and is seeking resources, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). If you are in immediate danger, call 911.
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