Since 2020 is so messy, it only makes sense Season 16 of The Bachelorette would be as well. While Clare Crawley has already given viewers plenty to talk about as the current franchise lead, it was something she said after a group date that really had fans talking. It turns out, however, Clare's "fiancé" quote might not be about Dale. In fact, this Bachelorette theory makes it seem like Clare could have been talking about someone else entirely.
In case you need a recap, on the Oct. 27 episode, Clare was heard calling Dale her fiancé... or at least, that's how fans interpreted the moment. After a group date in which some of Clare's contestants performed a comedy roast, she was surprised at how much flack Dale received. So, during the cocktail hour after the date, she tried to question the guys about their Dale jokes, only to be met with crickets. At the end of the night, Clare decided to give herself the group date rose and left the guys, seemingly disgruntled.
"Everybody was just digging on Dale. That wasn't funny," she said, walking away from the group. "I really don't think I can sit there and go, 'You dished on my fiancé so hard.' Like, I can't be doing that sh*t, you know? Like, it doesn't feel right"
While it seemed like Clare was calling Dale her fiancé in the clip (something that aligns with the rumor that the two are actually engaged post-show), according to Clare's ex-fiancé (and current friend), Benoit Beauséjour-Savard, that might not be the case. In an Oct. 30 interview with Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti on their Almost Famous podcast, Beauséjour-Savard said he thinks Clare could have actually been talking about him, and that the soundbite fans heard was the product of some clever editing.
“When she called him her fiancé, a lot of people were telling me, ‘Benoit, I feel like they just cut out the ex-fiancé part, and maybe they made some jokes about you [that were cut from the episode],'” Beauséjour-Savard said. He also pointed out that, in that scene, fans could only see the back of Clare's head and not her mouth, making it easier for her sound byte to be chopped up a bit. He added: “I know Clare and I know how she is. Why would she have called him her fiancé at that moment, especially in that part?"
Since the full roast wasn't shown on the episode, there's a chance the guys did make jokes about Beauséjour-Savard, and there's a chance editors did play around with the sound to better fit the "Clare loves Dale" narrative. By now, fans know The Bachelorette producers can make magic happen with post-production editing, so at this point, anything could be true. Either way, viewers will just have to wait to see whether or not Clare walks away from the show with Dale as her fiancé.
Season 16 of The Bachelorette continues on Thursday, Nov. 5, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.