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The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Hear from ‘The Bachelor’ in an exclusive interview about season 27

Zach Shallcross discusses handing out roses as “The Bachelor” and what to expect in his unexpected journey for love.
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Lexie Perez
Graphic depicting season 27 “The Bachelor” Zach Shallcross. (Hustler Multimedia/Lexie Perez)

To most of us, the idea of finding love on reality television seems like a naive fantasy. But Zach Shallcross, a family-loving California native, has faith that he can find love by dating thirty women as “The Bachelor.”

On season 19 of “The Bachelorette,” Shallcross fell in love with Rachel Recchia, one of the season’s two “Bachelorettes”. After gushing over childhood videos in an old-fashioned movie theater on their first date and developing a fun-loving and emotional bond, the couple called it quits following their fantasy suite date. Shallcross expressed that Recchia seemed different once the cameras were no longer running. 

“That scares me,” he said in an in-episode interview. 

Shallcross became a fan-favorite for wearing his heart on his sleeve and was chosen as “The Bachelor” for season 27. The Hustler spoke to Shallcross in an interview about how he got here and what to expect from his tumultuous season. 

“Going into last season, I was in a previous relationship that didn’t work out and then took about a year and a half to be with myself. I don’t think it was some lightbulb moment, but it came to a point of — life is so much better spent with one person,” Shallcross said.  “I look at my own [parents] that have like thirty years of marriage. I think life is pretty damn cool, and if you have your best friend to spend that with, how cool is that?” 

Shallcross’ journey to find his wife as “The Bachelor” took place months ago and will air weekly over the next few months. On the Jan. 23 season premiere, Shallcross met the thirty women who will shape his journey as “The Bachelor.” 

Gabi Elnicki, an account executive from Vermont, greeted Shallcross with a bottle of maple syrup from Vermont, and Greer Blitzer, an account executive from New York, gave him a cup of coffee from New York City. We also met Christina Mandrell, the daughter of country singer Barbara Mandrell and a Nashville native, who came rocking in on a party bus. Make sure to look out for “The Bachelor” royalty next time you’re on Broadway! 

On night one, Shallcross gushed in a conversation with Katherine, a 26-year-old nurse from Tampa, Florida about how they’re both looking for a best friend in a relationship. Jess, an e-commerce coordinator also from Florida, giggled with Shallcross before a romantic kiss. Madison Johnson, a business owner from North Dakota, brought the drama for the night, stealing Shallcross from Olivia M. and securing a reluctant kiss from him. Shallcross gently but quickly sent Madison home before the rose ceremony after she ruffled a few feathers with the other women. 

“My biggest worry going into the season was that I wouldn’t have the opportunity to find love,” Shallcross said. “Like I was still a little worried of — is my person going to be here? Is everyone here coming with the best intentions? Because I don’t get to meet any of these women until that night, really. Minus the five, briefly, at the finale.” 

However, after meeting the women on night one, his confidence that his wife was in the room was almost immediately revived. Still, after consultation with his producer, he declined in the interview to name a woman on the season whom we should watch for.

“Very soon after I met them all I was feeling so much confidence that yeah,” he nodded, “I think she’s here.” 

Shallcross touched on how therapy helped him during his time on “The Bachelor,” a topic he had also brought up on “The Bachelorette” while dating Recchia. 

“Through years of therapy, I was able to find some answers to the questions I’ve always been wanting to ask,” Shallcross said. “Being comfortable with myself, I think, is the most important part before getting into a relationship, let alone a marriage. [Going to therapy] feels like a weight off your chest.” 

Shallcross’ first-impression rose went to Greer, who connected with him over her long-time desire to move to Austin, Texas where he currently lives. The evening concluded with a rose ceremony, where twenty women received roses and ten were sent home, among them Holland, Sonia, and Olivia M. Episode two aired on Jan. 30, the week after my interview with Shallcross, as he began his journey in earnest with two group dates and a one-on-one date. 

The first group date of episode two, starring special guest Latto, challenged a group of the women to show off their “bad bitch energy” to Shallcross. Three particularly spicy former “The Bachelor” contestants co-hosted the date: Victoria Fuller from Season 24, Tahzjuan Hawkins from Season 23 and Courtney Robertson from Season 16. 

The episode concluded with a dramatic and hopeful promotion for the season. Clips showed Shallcross kissing multiple different women on yachts, pirate ships and in front of a show of fireworks. In one clip, he confessed to falling in love with an unshown woman. The mood then shifted to show grimmer moments from the season. Katherine and Charity were shown in separate clips with tears running down their faces, expressing fear that their feelings might not be reciprocated. Later, Shallcross was shown in a tearful embrace with show host Jesse Palmer. 

In the final clip, Shallcross walked anxiously down a European street. Today, Shallcross may or may not be with his special someone as he watched his dramatic journey with the rest of America.

“I’m still getting my rest back for Monday. Big day,” Shallcross said. “You are going constantly, and it’s so much fun meeting all these great new people and watching the episodes and a lot of adrenaline. And once you have that time off, it’s like, ‘I need to sleep.’”

Following the airing of the season, Shallcross will enter the next stage of his life, possibly with the partner of his dreams. “Right now as the show is playing out, it’s kind of busy with a lot of press and flying around and doing that, but once this does settle down I’m going back into my tech life.” Shallcross worked as a Sales Executive at Oracle prior to starring on “The Bachelor” and “Bachelorette.”  “That’s the plan,” he said. 

When asked if he’s found love, Shallcross replied with a smile. 

“I found love, but you’re gonna have to tune in to see what that looks like,” he replied. 

Classic. 

Tune in every Monday at 7 p.m. CST on ABC to see the emotional ups and downs and the outcome of Shallcross’ journey for love. 

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About the Contributors
Veronica Tadross, Senior Staff Writer
Veronica Tadross ('25) is majoring in economics and history and minoring in Arabic in the College of Arts and Science. She is from Long Island, N.Y., and you can reach her at [email protected].
Lexie Perez, Graphics Director
Lexie Perez (‘26) is from Northern Virginia and is majoring in climate studies and human and organizational development and minoring in business in the College of Arts and Science. She enjoys listening to 70s and 80s pop music, doing the daily Wordle and rooting for the Nashville Predators and Cincinnati Bengals. She can be reached at [email protected].
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