Ready or not, here comes Colton Underwood's reign as the next Bachelor. The former pro football player wasn't an obvious choice among fans, but it's now time to embrace all of the Sean Lowe comparisons and the inevitable touch football group date. With the gap in our Bachelor franchise airing schedule coming up, when does Colton's Bachelor season start filming? The start of his journey may be sooner than you think.
As per tradition, the announcement of the newest Bachelor comes each year in late August or early September, but in the recent past, the news seems to break later and later. In 2017, Arie Luyendyk was revealed as the Bachelor on Sept. 7 on Good Morning America, and ABC just barely beat that record when GMA announced Bachelorette Season 14 fourth-place finisher Colton as its new lead on Sept. 4. While Arie had a speedy turnover between being cast and starting to film the season, Colton's wait is likely a tad longer.
The Bachelor always starts filming in late September, so Colton still has about three more weeks before he's pulling up to the mansion in Los Angeles again. Of course, that time will fly by in a flurry of press appearances, interviews, and photoshoots, but once he hits the wet pavement outside Bachelor Mansion, Colton will be on a whirlwind quest for love. Shooting continues until November, concluding shortly before Thanksgiving. So, yes, the winning contestant gets engaged and then, over turkey, has to tell all her random relatives she hasn't seen in a year that she suddenly has a fiancé.
Meanwhile, both Colton and his former Bachelor in Paradise girlfriend Tia Booth have confirmed that Tia won't pop up as a contestant on his Bachelor season. After officially declaring themselves a couple, the two broke up on Sept. 3's Paradise episode when Colton felt he couldn't treat Tia the way she deserved. While speaking on GMA, Colton revealed that he and Tia were "finally on the same page" and just friends, so let's hope we won't have to make a Bachelor drinking game based on Tia's name.
As a virgin, Colton definitely strikes remembrance of Season 17 Bachelor Sean Lowe, who was a born-again virgin and a former college football player. Sean is also the only Bachelor to marry his Final Rose pick (Arie planning to marry initial runner-up Lauren Burnham in January doesn't really count as Bachelor success), so perhaps ABC is rooting for a similar guy to have the same kind of approach to finding a wife on the show. Obviously, we all wish for a Bachelor to be more of a Sean than a Juan Pablo or Arie, but we haven't quite had the best performance record.
As any Bachelor assures us, Colton is eager to find love and become engaged, telling GMA anchor Michael Strahan, "That's what I was looking forward to the most — being engaged and then getting married shortly after that."
Just like Colton, Bachelor Nation has quite the journey ahead of them before we see yet another elegant proposal. Will Colton develop an annoying vocal tic like Arie's "I love that"? Can ABC dig up a gymnast contestant who competed with his ex Aly Raisman? Will Tia and Becca Kufrin stop by to give Colton advice? The possibilities are endless. Good luck, Colton! Here's hoping that we only have to sit through one Bachelor proposal from you unlike some of your predecessors.
Season 23 of The Bachelor premieres in January 2019.