Well, Season 16 of “The Bachelorette” just got interesting — and not just because of all the COVID-19 production issues.
Speculation is flying that Clare Crawley has quit the show and will be replaced by Tayshia Adams, the fan favorite who reached the final three on Colton Underwood‘s installment of “The Bachelor” and later appeared on “Bachelor in Paradise.” ABC has not announced or confirmed anything yet, but E! News reported Monday that this is indeed happening. And there is a lot of evidence that this switcheroo is true.
It all started on Thursday with “Life & Style‘s” report that Crawley wanted to quit after falling hard for Dale Moss, whom Reality Steve confirmed got the first impression rose after production started on July 17. On Friday, “Us Weekly” reported that producers had asked the men who were rejected before production began to return, and that it was, per a source, “very apparent that something had happened with production.”
The same day, a Reddit user posted that Crawley had been recast with Adams after Crawley failed to show up for scheduled filming, and that Adams was already quarantining in La Quinta Resort & Spa in La Quinta, California, where the whole season is being filmed. Reality Steve tweeted that there is “some serious validity to it based on what I’m hearing now.”
(MAJOR SPOILER): I’ve been made aware of this Reddit post making the rounds. Been on the phone for the last 2 hrs digging. I cannot confirm with 100% certainty if it’s true yet, but if you ask my opinion, I think there is some serious validity to it based on what I’m hearing now pic.twitter.com/y0SudK7Pcl
— RealitySteve (@RealitySteve) July 31, 2020
Later, Reality Steve did a lengthy Instagram Live in which he said that while he does not have full confirmation, he is “very certain” that Adams is in La Quinta at the moment.
“I haven’t gotten the confirmation that I need, but I am very certain that Tayshia is out in La Quinta right now. There’s no reason for Tayshia to be in La Quinta unless she’s being asked to film something,” he said. “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. I do think she is.”
Reality Steve is just as in the dark as we are, however, about what happened to Crawley, whose season was delayed four months by the pandemic already. The spoiler guru floated two possibilities about her alleged departure: She was difficult to deal with and was fired, or she did fall head over heels for Moss and wanted out. But Reality Steve also played devil’s advocate, noting that the show has dealt with far more difficult leads who weren’t canned, and that lots of leads who already had their final pick in mind had to complete the season. He also theorized that Crawley and Moss — one of the 17 men from the original cast of 32 to survive the recast — may have already been chatting during the postponement.
Reality Steve later talked to “Bachelor” alum Demi Burnett, who said she’s been texting Adams, but the texts went through as green, suggesting that producers have already confiscated her phone, which was turned off. “Oh, she’s there then,” Steve said.
And finally, there is Adams’ most recent Instagram post on Friday, a photo of her shadow. Fans quickly noticed two accounts that commented: Julie LaPlaca — you know, the producer rumored to have dated Peter Weber — who posted a series of heart and fire emojis, and the official Bachelor Nation account, which chimed in with praise hand emojis.
On Monday, E! News reported that Adams will replace Crawley, citing multiple sources, and that the season will cover both of their journeys to finding love.
“The producers have told [Adams] that the season will still lead with Clare and her short-lived journey, and will show Clare falling in love with one of her suitors,” the insider told the site. “Clare will then conclude her journey and announce that Tayshia is the lead.”
“The Bachelorette” is slated to air on Tuesdays at 8/7c in the fall, but no premiere date has been announced yet.