ABC has a brand new lead for the 16th season of "The Bachelorette," and literally no one saw this coming. In the past several seasons of the franchise, there's been an increasing number of contestants between the ages of 22 and 25. In fact, in the past two seasons of "The Bachelor," each of the leads final two has been 23-years-old. And while having contestants in their early twenties has certainly led to ample drama, cat fights and plenty of meme-worthy one liners—it appears that many of these contestants aren't ready for long term love.
It was no surprise to me that the producers of the show went outside of Peter Weber's season for their new lead, as there really wasn't a standout contestant who would be able to carry the show while also providing the necessary emotional vulnerability. Many bloggers speculated who could be considered for the next season of "The Bachelorette," with some tossing around favorite favorites like Tayshia Adams (Bachelor season 23), Tia Booth (Bachelor season 22), Kendall Long (Bachelor season 22) and Kristina Shulman (Bachelor 21). Each of these contestants made a lasting impression on our screens and in the eyes of Bachelor nation, however, the show threw it WAY back with their pick for the next Bachelorette.
Bachelor season 18 finalist Clare Crawley was officially announced as the next Bachelorette, making her the oldest lead in the show's history at 38 (soon to be 39 on March 20th) years of age. Crawley first won America's heart while competing for Bachelor Juan Pablo Galavis, who became one of the most hated leads in the history of the show. During his season, Galavis shamed Crawley on camera for seducing him while in Vietnam and after dumping her at the final rose ceremony, Crawley tells him off in a very memorable way. Crawley went on to appear in a number of Bachelor franchise spinoffs, including seasons one and two of "Bachelor in Paradise," as well as 2018's "The Bachelor Winter Games." On the latter show, it appeared that Crawley had found love with Canadian Bachelor alumni, Benoit Beauséjour-Savard, who proposed to Crawley at the finale—however, their courtship was short lived. Now, six years following her first appearance on the franchise, Crawley is ready for her turn in the driver's seat.
Upon learning of Crawley's announcement as the next Bachelorette, we did some investigating on the 38-year-old hair stylist. And what did we find? A tattoo of course! It appears that Crawley has (at least) one tattoo, which is five stars on her left foot. And while we don't know for certain the meaning of this piece, we do have a strong hunch. During her season of "The Bachelor," Crawley shared with America that she is one of six girls in her family. Could this tattoo be for her five sisters? It's not a bad guess.
What do you think of ABC's new Bachelorette? Will you be tuning in this season? Let us know your thoughts on this story and Crawley's tattoo on social media.