"I just wanted to give the guy a hug and make it OK and give her a hug," Harrison tells TVGuide.com. "You'll see next week at the 'Men Tell All' he's still heartbroken."
Keep reading for more on Harrison's reaction to the fantasy dates, why he's proud of Emily and whose hot-seat conversation next week is extremely uncomfortable. Plus: Why did Emily ask to not watch the guys' video messages?
Did you have any idea who Emily was going to let go?
Chris Harrison: You could easily make a case for all three that they are the best man for her. They will love her, respect her, take care of Ricki — they're perfect — and I've never been able to say that before. I've never been able to run through the final three and give you a laundry list of things why they're the best guy.
What do you think ultimately led Emily to cut Sean?
Harrison: On paper and in her head, Sean is the guy, and without a doubt one of the greatest guys she's met. Publicly, I think she's even afraid that she's going to be tarred and feathered for not picking him, but in her heart it just wasn't there like it was for Arie and Jef.
How tough was that goodbye?
Harrison: Watching that goodbye I got teary. I just wanted to give the guy a hug and make it OK and give her a hug. I thought it was the most emotional, heartfelt goodbye we've ever had, and she really said it all when she said, "I wanted it to be you so bad." She really tried to force herself into thinking Sean was the guy but thought, "I can't want it to be you; it has to be you." For him to have opened up and say all the things he did, you know that doesn't come easy for him. You'll see next week at the Tell All he's still heart-broken.
Were you surprised when Emily wouldn't trust herself to be alone with Arie?
Harrison: Her and Arie definitely have that intangible physical attraction. I'm just proud that Emily let herself embrace and feel all of this, and she walked the line beautifully where she did talk and act like a normal woman would like, "I want nothing more to jump his bones."
Jef asked some poignant questions about Ricki and their future.
Harrison: Jef has a youthful exuberance and is wonderful to be around, but she's also very attracted to the guy who wrote that letter [after Prague] and is very thoughtful in a serious manner. One complaint about our show sometimes is we don't show them talking politics or religion so I'm glad we showed these real-world conversations.
The video messages were back!
Harrison: We always shoot them, [but] we don't always show them. It just depends on whether or not it's clear that one guy is going or that it's not as emotional of an episode. This was such an extraordinary situation with three guys so in love with her it fit. We didn't show it, but she actually asked me, "Do I have to watch these?" I convinced her that "These guys took the time to say this stuff. You at least owe it to them to watch it. It's not fair to take the easy way out."
What can we expect from next week's "Men Tell All"?
Harrison: It was very emotional, and I was surprised at how emotional Chris was. People will really see how special Emily is and get a sense as to why all these guys were falling in love with her.
I assume Kalon will be in the hot seat?
Harrison: It wasn't as intense until Emily came out and confronted him and then it got very contentious and slightly uncomfortable. He tried to be a wily politician, and good on her for not backing down. There's a moment that got a round of applause from the audience.
Was there any arguing among men?
Harrison: I was worried it would be a big bro fest, but they definitely weren't afraid to rip on each other.