The Bachelorette’s Chris Harrison: Calling Bentley a Villain is Too Nice

Courtesy: ABC/Rick Rowell

The uproar over the inappropriate comments about Ashley Hebert made by Bentley, one of the bachelors on this season’s The Bachelorette, was so loud, it got host Chris Harrison on the phone to share the show’s side of how it all went down.

One of the first things Chris explains is that they – Ashley included – had  information that Bentley was there for the wrong reasons before he even got out of the limo, and that Ashley had the option of having Bentley pulled before the show started, but she chose to ignore the warning.

Why she fell for him so quickly is still a mystery. While a handsome guy, he is not good looking enough, in my opinion, to warrant her instant infatuation.

“She never really had an answer,” says Chris, who says he cautioned her about Bentley several times. “I would love to talk to her now when she might have perspective.”

Each of the past several seasons of the series has had its villain: Ali Fedotwosky had Justin Rego, Jillian Harris had Wes Hayden and Brad Womack had Michelle Money. But Chris says that calling Bentley a villain is “too cliché and soft.” He adds, “It gives him a title. I don’t think it is fair. I don’t think it does justice to the kind of guy he was. It lets him off too easy. I don’t think he was playing the bad guy. I don’t know what his motivation was. I don’t know what his end game was.”

Courtesy: ABC/Rick Rowell

On Monday night’s upcoming episode, something transpires between Bentley and Ashley that breaks her heart. And, according to Chris, they almost had to shut down production. After the tearful scene we have seen in the promo, it was hard to get The Bachelorette back on track.

“When you see Ashley after Bentley, you see this vulnerable little girl,” Chris says. “I walked in and she was just crestfallen. She was, ‘I don’t want to do this.’ The next several weeks wasn’t worrying about her falling in love, but worrying about whether she believed in the process.”

Chris is hoping that Bentley, who is the father of a young daughter, comes to the Men Tell All, so he can put him in the hot seat and try to get some answers as to what Bentley hoped to gain by his behavior. It was obvious he wasn’t there to try to find love, but did he really think acting like the bad boy would help his business or help him get dates with other women?

As for why the show aired some of Bentley’s more inappropriate comments, Chris says, “I think you’ve got to see what the guy said. …This was what the guy was saying. I think in true context you needed to see what this guy was about and how he was really playing her. Ashley didn’t get to hear that. He was smooth and suave with her. You had to show both sides.”

The Bachelorette returns on Monday night at 8 p.m. on ABC.

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