"Once upon a time, the Bachelor machine could air seasons that didn’t feature a single contestant of color and face little public criticism from the media or from its own fans," says Shirley Li. "Now it’s no longer able to fully separate its foundational fantasy from reality. No wonder the illusion it used to sell—of a love story drenched in champagne, both tested and nurtured by bizarre reality-TV circumstances—is crumbling." As Li points out the Emmanuel Acho-hosted After the Rose special didn't delve into the behind-the-scenes reasons why Mike James' season was such a mess -- he failed to or wasn't allowed to ask about casting or vetting or the production. "Not once did the show address the role the franchise played in the controversy, as many disillusioned fans had hoped it would. In other words, it operated as it always did, just without Harrison in the hosting chair. After the segment wrapped, Acho enthusiastically welcomed the next two Bachelorettes. That’s enough of that mess, the show seemed to say. Shall we move on? Once again, the franchise appears to be banking on its fans’ institutional amnesia. The news headlines have naturally slowed—though (host Chris ) Harrison has just hired a prominent lawyer—and the franchise has turned its focus toward promoting its next two seasons of The Bachelorette. And though such passivity might be enough to appease some viewers, it’s maddening for the ones who want more transparency from the producers about the show’s inner workings, fairer treatment of the cast, and clearer methods of supporting leads and contestants of color. Those are the Bachelor superfans who, rather than walking away entirely, are hoping to use their platforms for good."