This season of 'The Bachelorette' has felt partly like watching a car crash in slow motion. In the midst of a historic season with its first black lead Rachel Lindsay, viewers learned that contestant Lee Garrett had some long-deleted racist tweets that seemed completely opposed to his supposed desire to be wooing Rachel. Meanwhile, we watched race-tinged drama play out onscreen, knowing that Rachel had been forced to interact with Lee without the full backstory.
The bad news: This season made race an issue in the most confrontational, broad way possible. The good news: On tonight's 'Men Tell All' reunion special, the contestants and Rachel finally got their chance to say their piece to Lee.
Twitter was pretty ready for it:
ugh chris harrison talking about beefing up security THIS season feels like such a dog whistle. i mean, bro. #MenTellAll— Claire Fallon (@ClaireEFallon) August 1, 2017
This public dragging is great and everything Chris but you guys still cast this asshole #MenTellAll— Liz! (@youonlylizonce) August 1, 2017
"I do not like racism at all," says the blatant racist #MenTellAll— Emma Gray (@emmaladyrose) August 1, 2017
For his part, Kenny let Lee off the racism hook. "It didn't feel like racism to me," he said, before going on to explain that the issue might have been that Lee was just a jerk. Still, ABC may have subtly acknowledged their agreement that Kenny wasn't the villain in the duo. Not only did they fly out Kenny's daughter to meet him onstage, they're treating the family of two to a day at Disneyland tomorrow for her birthday.
When it was Rachel's turn in the hot seat, she brushed off the history-making move of her casting. "Race wasn't an issue for me as I was going through season, she said. As for Kenny and Lee, she decided to speak as a "spokesperson for African Americans and for women." She continued, "I'd be more than happy to give you a black history lesson, a lesson on women's rights."
Of course, Rachel is doing the best job at calling out Lee. #MenTellAll— Suze (@mysouthmyeast) August 1, 2017
Despite all the drama, fans have a great idea for next season. Your move, Chris Harrison.