The Bachelor’s twenty-fifth season premiered in January 2021 and concluded in March 2021, with the leads for the upcoming seasons of The Bachelorette having already been chosen.
The Bachelor premiered its twenty-fifth season on ABC on Monday, 5 January 2021. The season saw the first Black lead, Matt James, who had not appeared on any of the previous seasons. This was also a first for the popular reality dating franchise. Matt acknowledged his role as the first Black Bachelor and chose to advocate for the Black community throughout his time on the show. However, this was compromised when a contestant, Rachael Kirkconnell, was embroiled in controversy surrounding an image of her attending a racist fraternity party years ago.
Ultimately, it was revealed that Matt had chosen to pursue a relationship with Rachael, but due to the racial conversation surrounding the allegations made against her, he had chosen to end that relationship. This was revealed at the After The Final Rose special, which saw the couple announcing their breakup. The episode, which also served as the season finale on Monday, 15 March 2021, saw the franchise announcing the next two leads of The Bachelorette, with each woman being given a chance to find love. The new seasons of The Bachelorette, starring Katie Thurston and Michelle Young, will air in late 2021 and early 2022.