3:18pm PT by Christina Schoellkopf
'The Bachelorette's' Luke on Fan Push to be the Next 'Bachelor': "I Would Be Open to It"
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, Texas, 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 white 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.