The Bachelor Season 26: Everything We Know So Far

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The 26th season of The Bachelor is upon us. 

In September, ABC announced that Clayton Echard is the new Bachelor. It also announced that Jesse Palmer will replace Chris Harrison as host. 

Palmer was the Bachelor for the show’s fifth season in 2004, although he didn’t end his season with the traditional proposal. Since retiring from football in 2007, Palmer has appeared as an analyst on ESPN and host on various shows on the Food Network and ABC. 

Here’s everything else we know about season 26 of The Bachelor:

Clayton Echard is the Bachelor. Spoiler! In a very unconventional choice, ABC went with Echard, a contestant from a Bachelorette season that didn’t air until October 19. (Echard is a contestant on Michelle Young’s season.) Echard works in orthopedic sales, at least until he becomes a full-time employee of the Bachelor Nation fam, and played football at the University of Missouri, Columbia.

According to Us Weekly, “Clayton stood out right off the bat” and producers “wanted to switch things up and go with someone new and someone who hasn’t been in the spotlight yet.”

Jesse Palmer is replacing Chris Harrison as host.  Former Giants player, former Bachelor, and current ESPN football analyst Jesse Palmer is replacing original host Chris Harrison after he stepped down. “For more than 20 years, The Bachelor has brought the world dozens of unforgettable love stories, including at one time, my own,” Palmer said in a statement. “Falling in love is one of life’s greatest gifts, and I am humbled by the opportunity to return to the show as host this season to offer the newest Bachelor advice gained from firsthand experience and I am grateful to play a small part in his journey.”

Jesse Palmer as the titular Bachelor in 2004.
Bob D’Amico/Getty Images

When does it premiere? Monday, January 3 on ABC.

Where can I stream it? The next day on Hulu.

The season is filming right now. Season 18 of The Bachelorette wrapped in September 2021, and The Bachelor went into production later that month. 

The mansion is back, baby! After filming at various resorts across the country because of the coronavirus pandemic, the mansion is finally back. Executive producer Mike Fleiss tweeted a photo of the home on September 26 with the caption, “We’re back, baby!!! Feels good….” 

This post will be updated. 

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