Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell Aren’t Over, After All


It would be an understatement to call the most recent season of The Bachelor dramatic, even on a franchise known for scandal. Having Matt James as the show’s first Black male lead brought to the surface contestant Rachael Kirkconnell’s racially insensitive actions. The mishandling of that fallout was so bad that longtime host Chris Harrison actually stepped away from his role. Things only got more complicated when  Kirkconnell won the season, leaving many to wonder if the relationship could be salvaged after so many challenges.

Well, love never dies. “I’ve seen Rachael a handful of times,” James told People on April 28. “I’m not pursuing any relationships right now outside of that. I said I was going to focus on my relationship with her and that means focusing on it.”

This is a total 180 from what he said on the After the Final Rose special, when he revealed the two had broken up. That said, they were apparently spotted together in New York and Los Angeles since then. Breaking up is hard to do!

As for whether Kirkconnell is taking the necessary steps to learn from her past mistakes, James said, “That’s something you could talk to her about.” On that After the Final Rose special, he seemed hopeful that Kirkconnell was the type of person who could learn, grow and change, telling her, “The work and reconciliation that needs to be done is work that I can’t do for you…. And I know that you’re capable of doing it.”

Speaking of Bachelor Nation folks in hot water: Former franchise lead Colton Underwood recently came out as gay and was greeted by a wave of support. However, it was followed by backlash when members of Bachelor Nation tried to get his upcoming reality series canceled because he’d been accused of harassment in a past relationship…which started on the show. 


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