Well, another season of The Bachelor is in the books, and for the most part, it was a successful one.
Zach Shallcross proposed to Kaity Biggar, and despite rumors that the two had since gone their separate ways, they seemed very much in love during their live “After the Final Rose” interview.
The couple revealed that they plan to wed sometime in 2025, which would make Zach only the second Bachelor in history to marry the recipient of his final rose.
(There’s a reason producers trot out Sean Lowe so frequently — they need to remind viewers that this experiment has worked before! Once!)
But for many viewers, the ending of Zach’s season was not a very happy one.
That’s because of the perception that the 26-year-old badly mistreated runner-up Gabi Elnicki.
As you likely recall, Zach kicked off his Fantasy Suite round by loudly announcing that he would not have sex with any of the three remaining women.
He then had sex with Gabi and told the whole world about it because of … guilt?
We’re not really sure why he felt compelled to shout it from the rooftops, but he failed to consult Gabi, who was understandably less than thrilled to learn that her sex life had become a matter of public discussion.
In the finale, Zach took Gabi on an awkward beach date before awkwardly dumping her.
The blow was cushioned only by the fact that she saw the breakup coming, and she was granted the opportunity to confront Zach and call him out during “After the Final Rose.”
“It’s a part of me that I’ll never get back that I shared with him,” Gabi told host Jesse Palmer.
“It’s extremely violating that the entire nation knows everything.”
She later told Zach that she felt “blindsided” by his bizarre behavior, adding, “I understand what you were trying to do.”
Gabi added, “What I wish would’ve happened was that you warned me that you were going to use my name and that you were going to tell everyone what had happened.”
She went on to explain that she and Zach had discussed the matter during their Fantasy Suite date and decided to keep their decision private.
“It was consensual, and it was what we wanted,” she said to Zach.
“We decided that it was going to be between us. We said that that night. And I remember I was brushing my teeth, you came up behind me, you kissed me on the back of my head, you said, ‘This is just between us,’” she added.
“And I said, ‘Yes, this is just between us.’”
Gabi added that she felt “ashamed” by the whole experience.
“I just thought it was between us,” she explained.
“I thought it was love. I thought it was more than a TV show. I get it, sex sells, but now I’ve become a narrative.”
“There’s no excuse for the way I handled things,” an apologetic Zach told Gabi on After the Final Rose.
The apology seemed sincere — but for many viewers, the events of last night merely solidified Zach’s place as one of the most inept Bachelors in the history of the franchise.