Bachelor Pad has had its outrageous moments in the past three seasons, but none was more shocking and acrimonious than when Nick chose to keep the grand prize winnings to himself and leave his partner Rachel with nothing.
Although host Chris Harrison defends the personal trainer's decision to keep the money for himself, he admits that the way it was handled was nothing short of soul-crushing. Keep reading for more of Harrison's thoughts on the Season 3 ender, including Michael's hypocrisy, how Blakeley and Tony are perfect for each other, and what got left on the editing room floor.
Do you agree with Nick's decision to keep the money?
Chris Harrison: I don't know if it was the right decision, but I do know it's a game and he played the game. So can you fault the guy for that? I don't see the problem leaving there with $250,000 when it wasn't like Rachel was his best friend. I just don't think they ever thought this guy had it in him. It's funny that he was so overlooked [that] they didn't even think it was worthy to vote him out! Was he really that smart? I don't know. But the bottom line is, everyone else got played, got their butts kicked and handed to them on the grandest of stages.
What about the way he acted after the reveal?
Harrison: Where he went wrong was ... doing a touchdown dance on Rachel's soul right in front of everybody. He didn't need to rub her face in it like he did. He was very unbecoming and not gentlemanly and almost downright rude, but listening to his words, I get what he was trying to say. The cool kids made fun of him, ignored him and he didn't owe them anything. If he had been more contrite and said, "I'm sorry," it would've come off a lot better. The funniest part was [when] Michael Stagliano ... said, "How could you do that? There's a girl hurting next to you." I was like, "Wow. Hey, pot calling the kettle black." Michael, if anyone, should've kept his mouth shut.
Speaking of Michael, how do you think he handled the situation with Rachel?
Harrison: He tried maybe 10 times to make himself the victim again. Did he get way too much sympathy for what happened last season with Holly? Yes. That was a situation he largely created on his own and it was in large part unfair to Holly. He played it to the hills and this season he did the same thing essentially to Rachel. Is Michael a bad guy for not loving Rachel? Of course he's not. He probably said things he shouldn't have, but bottom line is, he doesn't love her, so in that situation, what can you say? It's funny that Michael made Rachel the sympathetic figure this year, so I guess he paid it forward.
How do you feel about Tony proposing to Blakeley?
Harrison: It's impossible not to root for them. They really seem to fit well and fill each other's needs. I like them both and she's a good woman and he's a good guy who adores her. It just makes sense.
Do you think Chris was sincere when he was in the hot seat?
Harrison: I thought Chris was honest and especially when he was talking about his family, I felt it really hit him in the gut. I also understand where he's like, "Honestly, Blakeley and Jamie, I don't care about you. I'm not too worried what you think about me. I can't take back what I did and all I can say is I'm sorry." But at the same time, I totally understand Blakeley and Jamie saying, "Screw you."
Did you suspect Chris and Sarah wouldn't get too many votes?
Harrison: I figured they'd get a few and I thought it would even be a little closer, but I didn't think there would be a snowball's chance in hell they'd win. Here's the thing, if you can take emotion out of this, Chris and Sarah played the game well. Chris made too many personal mistakes. He was actually the better gamer, but he was his worst enemy and there was no way he'd get enough votes considering how he acted.
Was there anything left out of the finale?
Harrison: It was an embarrassment of riches and unfortunately a lot of stuff got left on the editing room floor. Ryan spoke a little bit and had some good things to say, the twins did not speak, there was Reid, more about Ed and Jaclyn and Kalon and Lindzi. We had three stories we had to cover and a game, so it was like, "Wow, how are we going to do this?"
What did you think of this season of Bachelor Pad? Tell us below! Plus: If you're in New York and want to see Bachelor Pad, Bachelorette and Bachelor alums, make sure to stop by 46NYC's lemonade stand for charity on Sunday, Sept. 23 in Central Park.