Skip To Content
  • Black Lives Matter badge

Matt James Is The New "Bachelor," And Of Course, People Have Thoughts

The salmon jacket returns.

So Matt James was just announced as the next lead on The Bachelor, which means that the show will FINALLY have a Black Bachelor.

ABC

The announcement comes after mounting pressure, sparked by the ongoing George Floyd and Black Lives Matter protests, for the show to diversify — one petition received over 85,000 signatures.

In case you didn't know, Matt was originally supposed to appear as a contestant on Clare Crawley's postponed season. He's also BFFs with The Bachelorette alum Tyler Cameron, and the two run the nonprofit ABC Food Tours.

Many were thrilled by the announcement:

WE HAVE OUR FIRST BLACK BACHELOR. This is only the beginning. Thank you for listening and taking action, @ABCNetwork. #TheBachelor

Awesome! Looking forward to seeing a season without a recycled bachelor too. https://t.co/5WGKL0ICjY

OMGGGGG MATT JAMES IS THE NEXT BACHELOR. YALL. i have been stalking this man ever since tyler cameron was on hannah b’s season. i have probably DM’ed him 50+ times. fuck i gotta apply. i’ll be the stalker girl IDC fuck i am so hype 🌹🌹🌹

Congrats to my friend @mattjames919 on becoming the newest Bachelor!! 🌹 #TheBachelor

Black Bachelor?? You LOVE to see it 👏🏾👏🏾🖤

And some noticed that Matt chose to wear a salmon jacket for the announcement — a recurring theme for men on Hannah B.'s season:

if the salmon jacket doesn’t make it official, idk what does

The salmon jacket will live on forever

However, some fans would have preferred to see Mike cast:

I'm so glad there is FINALLY a Black male lead on The Bachelor. I just want to know if Mike Johnson was busy or...

I am GLAD they are expanding in their leads but like MIKE?? JOHNSON??? Well established? Successful?? A veteran?? Grew up by a single mom and his sister?? Respects women??? LGBTQ supporter?? Who even is this guy?? https://t.co/n0QWZikbbt

And many were skeptical of the decision — especially given the history of accusations of racism against the show:

The Bachelor is BLACK for the first time since it’s 18 year/24 season run. Why now? https://t.co/CHeY4FQmzx

The Black Bachelor is gonna choose a white woman and racism will be solved.

the bachelor really - matched rachel lindsay with a literal racist - had hannah brown out here saying the n-word - went DECADES without having a Black bachelor/bachelorette and wants people to be happy about this??? who are you going to pair him with? another racist white girl? https://t.co/q0QAn8tIrc

everyone’s talking about how the first black bachelor should have been mike but why aren’t we talking about how f*cked the bachelor franchise is that there are only two options we could think of to be the first black bachelor and one of them was never even actually on the show

Hopefully this won't be the only change we see from the franchise going forward.

TV and Movies

Get all the best moments in pop culture & entertainment delivered to your inbox.

Newsletter signup form