Last night, on the season premiere of The Bachelorette, contestant “Ryan M.” played the role of wasted, chauvinistic pig at the opening cocktail party—slamming Fireball, yelling about being “horned up,” and even smacking Bachelorette Kaitlyn on the ass. Where’d the producers find this guy?
As Reality Steve and other superfans on Twitter have pointed out, the man better known as Ryan McDill is actually the ex-boyfriend of 2014’s Bachelor winner Nikki Ferrell. Nikki, who found (brief) love with Bachelor Juan Pablo Galavis on the show, dated Ryan from 2012-2013. Ryan “exclusively” told Life & Style last year that he wanted Nikki back. If he’s that thirsty, no wonder he drank so much on last night’s show.
So if you thought the Bachelorette guys were looking just a little inbred last night, it’s because the producers are now just casting from a rolodex of a few hundred past contestants and their exes.
Not that ABC wants you to know this, of course—Ryan’s relationship with Nikki was never mentioned on last night’s episode, and his gross behavior was treated by host Chris Harrison as a total surprise. Harrison eventually sent Ryan home because he was “not here for the right reasons,” a judgment that probably could have been made before Ryan ever set foot on the show. (The last person to have been on Bachelorette for the right reasons was, of course, Trista.)
Perhaps after 13 years of casting The Bachelor/Bachelorette, the pool of possible contestants really has dried up. There are only so many dog walkers and VIP cocktail waitresses in this world, after all. When I attended a taping of The Bachelorette last month in New York, I overheard one producer trying to convince past contestant Ashley Iaconnetti’s attractive plus-one that she should come to a casting. There was also a rumor circulating that Nick Viall, who got booted by Bachelorette Andi Dorfman last year, was going to show up and make a play for Kaitlyn this season.
If your lifelong goal is to be on The Bachelor, it couldn’t hurt to start dating someone who’s already been on it right now.