Bachelorette spoilers: What happens on Katie Thurston's 2021 season of 'The Bachelorette' Who did Katie pick and end up with? (SPOILERS)
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 06/04/2021
Bachelorette spoilers have begun to leak out about Katie Thurston's 2021 season of The Bachelorette, including spoilers about Katie's cast of men, Katie's alleged Final 4 bachelors, and if Katie's journey to find love ended in an engagement!
Katie, a 30-year-old bank marketing manager from Lynnwood, WA, will have her hands full with 30 bachelors, including one "mystery-box contestant," when The Bachelorette's seventeenth season premieres Monday, June 7 at 8PM ET/PT on ABC.
"I'm ready to find love, and not just, like, the temporary kind. I'm talking forever, my husband, and I'm in a place in my life where I feel like I'm the best version of me," Katie said after being announced as the Bachelorette on Matt James' After the Final Rose special in March.
"Honestly, I've seen this work before; why can't it work for me?"
Katie was eliminated from Matt's The Bachelor season before hometown dates, but she made a lasting impression on Matt and viewers with her raunchy humor. She also put an end to bullying in the house and took pride in being unapologetically herself.
So did Katie find the man of her dreams, and if so, is she happily engaged to her winner? Keep reading for The Bachelorette spoilers ahead of the show's premiere.
The women will be filling in for Chris Harrison, who announced in February he'd be "stepping aside" from his hosting duties "for a period of time" to educate himself on a "profound" level after defending The Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell's racially-ignorant and insensitive actions in the last several years.
"Tayshia and Kaitlyn can relate to Katie's journey in a lot of different ways, which you'll see play out, so it was nice to have them there to help out with whatever situation came up," a source told Us Weekly in late April.
"Tayshia had fun and loved doing it. She and Kaitlyn made a great team."
"They act professional, they're on time and are helping the franchise as much as they can in this funky situation," the insider revealed, although there was reportedly a learning curve and the crew missed Chris on the set.
Unlike the seasoned Chris Harrison -- who hosted the franchise ever since The Bachelor premiered nearly 20 years ago -- Kaitlyn and Tayshia reportedly had "to do a lot of retakes" during filming.
"It's a lot of memorizing lines," the insider continued. "They didn't have years of experience before hopping on. Scenes that could be done in one take with Chris can now take, like, two hours."
Chris initially came under fire when he called for "grace" and "compassion" for Rachael and also criticized the "woke police" and the "unbelievably alarming" response of anger and frustration to the young woman's offensive actions during an early-February Extra interview with The Bachelorette's first Black leading lady, Rachel Lindsay.
Chris' greatest offense seemed to be his dismissive attitude towards photos of Rachael that resurfaced from an antebellum-plantation themed "Old South" fraternity party at Georgia College & State University in 2018.
Chris apologized multiple times and told Michael Strahan on a March appearance on Good Morning America, "I plan to be back and I want to be back."
But Bachelor Nation seems conflicted over whether his reinstatement would send the right message considering viewers have been pleading for more diversity and racial equality in the franchise for years.
When it was announced Chris would not be hosting The Bachelorette's new season, ABC Entertainment and Warner Horizon issued a joint statement to The Hollywood Reporter that read, "We support Chris in the work that he is committed to doing."
"As we continue the dialogue around achieving greater equity and inclusion within The Bachelor franchise, we are dedicated to improving the BIPOC representation of our crew, including among the executive producer ranks."
"These are important steps in effecting fundamental change so that our franchise is a celebration of love that is reflective of our world," the statement added.
Katie's entire season taped at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya in Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico.
During taping, cast and crew were required to quarantine before filming began and then follow coronavirus safety measures throughout their time at the resort, according to Reality Steve spoiler blogger Steve Carbone.
Tayshia teased during a recent appearance on the Going to Bed with Garcelle podcast that the world will see something "fresh and new" with Katie's season.
After Clare quit The Bachelorette's sixteenth season early because she had fallen in love with her immediate frontrunner, Dale Moss, Tayshia took over the reins and then eliminated Blake in the process of determining her Final 4 suitors.
"I believe he gets an early rose," Carbone wrote in a May 13 blog posting, "thus making him look like an early favorite."
Katie apparently didn't want to deal with the drama because Carbone says she will be shown eliminating Thomas in the third or fourth episode.
But the drama apparently doesn't stop with Thomas
Aaron Clancy, a 26-year-old insurance agent from San Diego, CA, and Cody Menk, a 27-year-old zipper sales manager from San Diego, CA, reportedly found themselves entangled in tension.
Given they are both from the same city, Carbone claims Aaron and Cody "definitely at least knew of each other and ran in the same friend circle," if they never met face to face.
Carbone reported that early in the process, Aaron went to Katie and told her Cody was "a party guy" who didn't sign up for the show with the right intentions of finding love with Katie.
Cody supposedly found out about this and confronted Aaron with frustration.
"I don't think it got physical, but, Cody ended up either getting eliminated in that moment or at the next Rose ceremony. Aaron went home a couple -- one or two -- episodes later," Carbone wrote in his May 13 blog posting.
Katie's season reportedly ended filming earlier than planned
The Bachelorette season reportedly wrapped production sooner than producers anticipated because Katie's journey to find love ended unexpectedly early.
According to a source, The Bachelorette "went great and it wrapped a week ahead of schedule," Us Weekly reported.
Katie was reportedly a decisive Bachelorette who meant business and so production ended on April 24, which was earlier than producers had planned.
"Katie was in control and made sure the men she wanted were there and the men she wasn't interested in, she sent packing," the source told the magazine.
"Those 3 I know," Carbone wrote in a May 13 blog posting.
"I'm not sure who the 4th guy is in the Final 4 yet. I've heard names but nothing I'm confident about. Those three I am."
But Carbone now says he was wrong about one of those three bachelors
Carbone changed Katie's Final 4 bachelors and revealed he made a big error in a June 3 blog posting.
"I've learned that I was wrong about John making Final 4. He didn't," Carbone wrote.
"He didn't even make Top 8. So all the people who emailed me telling me there's a ton of people convinced Katie's with John, sorry, but that's not the case. He's not in her Top 4, let alone her Top 8."
Carbone explained he was initially convinced John had made Katie's Top 4 -- and maybe even won her heart -- because Katie recently spent a weekend in San Diego with some of her Bachelor Nation friends.
"I started receiving emails that one of the places she tagged she visited, Duke's in La Jolla, was where John Hersey worked as a bartender. This led to even more people telling me that they were 100 percent convinced that John is who Katie chose, they're engaged, and that's why she went to that restaurant," Carbone shared.
"I never mentioned it until now because that story wasn't based in anything other than speculation and it never made sense to me. Well, I can report now there's nothing to it."
Carbone believes Katie is also social-media savvy enough to know better than to show up at the place where her winner works when ABC wants her to keep the season's final-rose recipient a mystery.
Two of Katie's Final 4 bachelors therefore remain a secret, however, the spoiler blogger seems convinced Blake and Greg definitely made Katie's Final 4.
Did Katie get engaged at the end of her journey to find love?
The Bachelorette promo ABC released on May 26 showed Katie crying and yelling at a camera, "I'm done! Someone book my flight home!"
But according to Carbone, Katie left the show happy and in a relationship.
And not only is Katie in a relationship, but she is reportedly engaged!
"I guess the biggest 'spoiler' I have for you is this: Katie is engaged. However, I don't know to who," Carbone wrote on May 13.
"I know you may ask, 'How can you know she's engaged but not know who to?'" Carbone continued. "Trust me, it's possible. I'm just not gonna give up sources on that, so yeah, it's possible to know one and not the other."
The spoiler blogger, however, apparently has no doubts that Katie accepted a marriage proposal at the end of her journey to find love on The Bachelorette's seventeenth season.
"Katie definitely got engaged at the end of this," Carbone insisted in his blog.
"And unless she breaks up before the finale, which I guess anything can happen, but she's happy and engaged as we speak, so I'd expect that to last."