He may have been fired from his longtime job hosting ABC’s The Bachelor franchise over a year and a half ago, but Chris Harrison is not going quietly into the night. And now he’s spilling the tea about his former employers on his new podcast (named in honor of his most often used catch phrase), The Most Dramatic Podcast Ever.
In the first of two installments that dropped on January 9, 2023 Chris claimed, “[There are] a few people that are sitting in Hollywood right now nervous as hell that I am doing a podcast — and I guess I would say to those people, if you’re nervous, maybe you should be.” US Weekly is breaking it down for us.
In his first two-hour episode, Chris talked about dealing with the backlash from the February 2021 interview that cost him his job as Bachelor host. “I was heartbroken. And I was gutted. I was embarrassed. I was mad at myself,” he stated. “I was disappointed in myself. The last thing in the world I ever wanted to do was be an agent of anything negative. Whether it had to do with race, or anything, the fact that I was involved in this and that I had a big part in this, I do own that,” the former host said.
As we all remember, the controversy began when Chris was asked about resurfaced photos of Season 25 Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell attending a college party with an “Old South plantation” theme. She wore an antebellum-style dress. At the time, he mansplained to Rachel Lindsay, the first Black Bachelorette, that fans need to have “a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion” for Rachael, who had yet to speak out.
Um, hello Chris, you’re attempting to school a professional Black woman on race relations. Not cool, buddy.
Not listening to me, Chris continued from his soapbox, “Who is Rachel Lindsay and who is Chris Harrison and who is whatever woke police person out there, who are you? I’ve heard this a lot of, ‘I think she should,’ ‘I think he should.’ Who the hell are you? Who are you that you demand that?” he opined.
Even though the Dallas native later apologized for his inappropriate rant in an Instagram statement, Harrision was put on hiatus. In March 2021, ABC brought in former NFL player Emmanuel Acho to host Matt James’s After the Final Rose. The longtime host’s official exit was made public in June of that year, and serial gigglers Kaitlyn Bristowe and Tayshia Adams were brought in as temporary hosts. Former NFL player and Season 5 Bachelor Jesse Palmer was hired in September 2021 as the new Bachelor host.
Chris is now comparing the whole situation to popular Netflix series Stranger Things and it’s weird “Upside Down” world. “I think the timing of this is very relevant of where we were in the world. We were all coming out of two years of being locked up [and] we were all angry and frustrated and then culturally, what was going on in the world with civil rights and there was a lot of confusion, anger and resentment,” he said. “I was just as frustrated and blind and pissed off as everybody else in the world . . . But that’s not to say that was OK.”
“I had no problem putting out that first [Instagram] apology,” he continued. “But there was just so much noise at the time. It just didn’t matter . . . I’ve never seen a time like that in my life, I’ve never known that not to work . . . if you sincerely apologize and open your heart,” Chris added.
While Chris repeatedly expressed “love” and appreciation for his former Bachelor coworkers, he threw some shade at the show’s current ratings and a few of the higher-ups. “I’m not mad at the show. The show changed my life. And I am grateful,” he said. “The majority of people, I love and adored. Look, the show was a massive success. It’s a historic show. It changed television in many ways, one of the most relevant television shows in history. And to be a part of that, to have helped create that over 19 years. I take great pride in that,” Chris stated.
“When I left, it was still the number No. 1 show on TV,” he claimed. (Really, Chris? I’m questioning those stats.) But while the former host claims the show’s ratings are down 50 – 60% since he was let go, ratings have dropped across the board for broadcast shows. During the pandemic, viewers learned to find entertainment across multiple streaming platforms, rather than relying on network television. The old days of “What’s on TV tonight?” — as my dad used to ask every night at the dinner table — are gone forever.
TELL US – DO YOU MISS CHRIS HARRISON HOSTING THE BACHELOR FRANCHISE? WILL YOU BE LISTENING TO HIS NEW PODCAST?
[Photo Credit: Craig Sjodin/ABC via Getty Images]