It's almost jarring when someone from "The Bachelor" franchise actually answers a tough question directly and candidly. But Chris Harrison just did it. He went there, and with very little hesitation. The Rosemaster spilled some tea today while co-hosting "Live with Kelly," answering Kelly Ripa's question about his least-favorite Bachelor.
Harrison initially just said, "You know how much this will stir things up? This will just ruin my life for the next month." However he quickly named the guy, and explained his reasons for why they didn't click.
First, who would you expect him to say?
We'd say Juan Pablo Galavis, who ended up rubbing a lot of people the wrong way during his 2015 Bachelor stint. Or perhaps Jake Pavelka, who also rubbed some people the wrong way, first for picking "villain" Vienna Girardi, then for the severe awkwardness of their TV breakup. Or maybe Ben Flajnik, who was both boring and picked the "villain" of the season.
There have been 20 Bachelors at this point -- including Brad Womack twice -- but the guy Harrison named was the Bachelor back in 2005: Charlie O'Connell, younger brother of actorJerry O'Connell.
Here's how Chris Harrison explained the dynamic to Kelly Ripa:
"Over 15 years, 30 some odd people that have been through this show, there are people I get along with better than others. And then some that we just meld with. You know what's funny, because you're friends with his brother, he comes on here: Jerry O'Connell. His brother, Charlie, was our Bachelor. I love Jerry, and I actually love Charlie, but Charlie and I — he was just East Coast, me Southern kid -- it was like oil and water. We just didn't get along. Now, self-admittedly, he was at a difficult point in his life -- a little tumultuous. He's come back from that, thankfully, but yeah, we just didn't really spend any time together. I would go and do my thing and he's like, yeah, we'd just go our separate ways."
Both Chris and Kelly reiterated that they love Jerry, which must make Charlie feel great.
Ironically, Charlie was actually one of the more successful Bachelors. He didn't propose to his Chosen One, Sarah Brice, but they stayed together for a long time -- longer than a lot of the engaged couples. They were together from 2005-2007, then reunited in 2008 before breaking up again in 2010. Charlie has been open about his past battles with alcohol, and both he and Sarah said in 2009 that his drinking was a factor in their initial breakup. By the time of that interview he had been sober for almost two years.
Showrunner Mike Fleiss was less diplomatic about Charlie's struggles as Bachelor. Back in 2012, at a Hollywood Radio & Television Society lunch, he said this about his own show:
"We had a couple bad Bachelors. [Season 7 Bachelor Charlie O'Connell] was drunk off his ass. He's sober now. He's got four years of sobriety. We got a little complacent, a little lazy. It started to sag. The audience picks up on that. They're smarter than we give them credit for."
After being trashed for his behavior during a low period in his life, we can't help but root for Charlie. It looks like he's still acting and IMDb says he has a movie coming out soon called "A Curry on an American Plate." Meanwhile, Season 21 Bachelor Nick Viall is just about to go on hometown dates. Chances are, Chris Harrison is fine with him or the producers wouldn't have cast him four different times.
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