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Welcome to The Bachelorette version of The Hollywood Reporter's Power Rankings. Each week, THR's Bachelor experts will be tuning in to the romantic connections and dramatic shenanigans taking place on season 12 of the long-running ABC franchise. In an effort to cater to viewers who opt out of show spoilers, these rankings are based on opinions and observations week-by-week. Read last week's Power Rankings here.
The fantasy suites always bring the drama on The Bachelorette, and JoJo Fletcher's overnight dates were no exception. Tonight's episode came in twos with blindsided breakups, surprise visits and successful fantasy suites all coming in pairs (the latter with her final two men, Jordan and Robby).
The episode was bookended with heartbreak, beginning with last week's "to be continued" moment with Luke. After pulling her aside to finally tell her that he loved her, JoJo eliminated Luke during the rose ceremony. Utterly shocked by her decision, he could barely speak.
“I just can’t believe I squandered it away," he said about expressing his feelings too little too late. "You didn't want me anymore. F—." In his limo ride away, Luke said he felt like he got hit by a train: "I would have been ready to propose to her today."
At the end of the episode, JoJo saw herself being similarly torn after rejecting Chase in the fantasy suite. After what appeared to be an amazing day, JoJo got cold feet when Chase told her that he also loved her.
"She gave me the fantasy suite card and then I said 'I love you' to her and then it was the end of it," Chase tells The Hollywood Reporter. "I went straight into walls up and to shock and confusion. I wasn’t able, at that point, to say a lot of the things that I wanted to say."
After their rocky goodbye, Chase surprised her the next day to end things on a better note. "It was important to be able to have at least one last conversation," he tells THR about returning during JoJo's rose ceremony with Jordan and Robby. "Between that night and now, it feels a lot better between JoJo and I."
Both Chase and Luke get their chance to confront JoJo during tomorrow's Men Tell All reunion special (airing at 8 p.m. on ABC) before she must make what she calls the "toughest decision" between Jordan and Robby.
Tonight, JoJo realized that she has come full circle: Just like Ben Higgins, she too has fallen in love with both of her final two picks.
"I'm sick to my stomach knowing I feel so strongly about both of them," she says to the camera. Calling it "cruel and twisted irony" that she's in the same shoes as the Bachelor who broke her heart, she says it "pains me to know that I'm going to have to put someone through the same heartbreak that I felt."
For more details on tonight and to see how Jordan and Robby stack up as The Bachelorette heads into its finale next Monday, see below. And keep sharing your thoughts with THR using #THRose on Twitter.
If Twitter is any indication, Luke Pell could be the next Bachelor.
After his shocking elimination by JoJo Fletcher on Monday night's episode of The Bachelorette, heartbroken viewers launched a social media campaign for the self-described "hopeless romantic" to get another chance to find love by launching the #LukeForBachelor hashtag.
Viewers again rejoiced after Tuesday night's episode of the Men Tell All reunion, when Luke seemed to have heard their call. He teased to Chris Harrison, "I'm ready to fall in love [again]."
The Hollywood Reporter followed up with Luke to ask him flat out: Would you be interested in being The Bachelor?
“I would be excited about it," he told THR about the possibility of leading ABC's 21st season. "I’ve seen firsthand that it worked, going through this whole process with JoJo and I. I was in love with her."
He continued, "And it happened so fast, but it was real at the same time. It was real for us and it was real for me. So, I would be open to it again because I know it works. It’s proven.”
Luke added that he knows it's possible to have an authentic relationship on the reality series because he experienced a very real heartbreak after JoJo sent him home. When he returned to his hometown of Burnet, Tx., he says he suffered from anxiety attacks and remained "in a state of shock."
"Your heart feels like it’s out of rhythm. You’re almost dizzy when you stand up," he says about bringing the shock viewers saw on TV home with him. "There were these anxiety symptoms that I was having to deal with and I couldn’t control. That’s when I knew. I realized, 'Wow this cut me deep.'"
The Texas war veteran quickly became a fan favorite on this season's Bachelorette and ABC has a history of listening to its viewers when it comes to picking the star of the franchise.
Last season, Ben Higgins castoff Caila Quinn was set to become the next Bachelorette, but JoJo swooped in to claim the gig last-minute after an overwhelmingly positive reaction for the runner-up after her Women Tell All special.
And Team Luke also has some competition: Viewers were also heartbroken over Chase McNary's elimination, whose fantasy suite rejection earned him more air time than Luke during the Men Tell All.
ABC could announce the new Bachelor during the After the Final Rose special (which follows the finale this Monday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on ABC), or they could wait to see which of JoJo's exes claims the biggest following over the next coming weeks.
Heading into the finale, JoJo will pick between her final two men: Jordan Rodgers and Robby Hayes. With Jordan as the seasonlong frontrunner, there's still potential for a Team Robby to rear its head after the episode.
If ABC does pick one of JoJo's finalists to helm the next season, the long-running franchise is likely to continue to ignore its diversity woes and select another nonwhite Bachelor, as JoJo's eight finalists are all white. With 31 seasons between The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, there has been only one diverse star — American-born Venezuelan Juan Pablo Galavis.
Check back on Monday to see who JoJo picks in the end — and possibly learn the pick for the next Bachelor — when The Bachelorette and After the Final Rose kickoff at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC Monday. And keep sharing your thoughts with THR using #THRose on Twitter.
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