Fans of “The Bachelorette” had mixed feelings about Gabby Windey taking part in season 31 of “Dancing With the Stars”. One of the reasons fans have objected is because co-bachelorette, Rachel Recchia, also wanted to join, but only Windey was chosen.
Both women expressed interest in being on DWTS in an August 24 interview on E! News Daily Pop. “Maybe it’s the first time me and Gabby will compete,” Recchia teased.
As it turns out, Recchia campaigning for Windey is the main reason the ICU nurse landed a spot on the popular dance competition show. According to Entertainment Tonight, in a recent episode of the podcast “SiriusXM Julia Cunningham’s Bachelorette Recap,” which is available to subscribers with streaming access, ABC director Robert Mills credited Recchia for putting Windey on the radar.
ET reports that Mills stated, “Gabby is actually busy — and this is the honest truth from God — she’s on because of Rachel. When we were at CMA Fest in Nashville in June, we were having dinner and Rachel said, ‘You have to give Gabby put on Dancing With the Stars. This is her dream. She would be so good. Please, please wear her.’”
Despite the fact that Windey was a cheerleader in Denver Broncos and has had both cheerleading and dance training under her belt, Mills went on to say, “We didn’t think of Gabby for Dancing With the Stars at all. For whatever reason she wasn’t real [on our radar]and then I thought, ‘Why didn’t we think about Gabby?’”
Windey is certainly not the first Bachelor Nation contestant to compete in DWTS. According to ET, “Melissa Rycroft, Trista Sutter, Jake Pavelka, Sean Lowe, Chris Soules, Nick Viall, Joe Amabile, Hannah Brown, Kaitlyn Bristowe and Matt James have all toured the ballroom.”
Some fans are tired of seeing ‘Bachelor/Bachelorette’ stars compete for the mirror ball trophy. “No more singles on the show!” one Facebook user responded.
Another fan posted: “At least give us a breather.” One viewer posted on Reddit: “For the love of Christ please no! Give us a fucking break from that franchise! Please Dancing with the Stars I’m literally begging and praying there’s no alum from the Bachelor(ette) this year.”
Despite these complaints, ABC doesn’t seem inclined to separate the franchises in the near term, especially since crossovers have been successful in the past. On the SiriusXM podcast, Mills explained the casting decision process with past Bachelor Nation contestants: “With Hannah Brown, we were like, we need to put her on. It just felt like a natural. Kaitlyn [Bristowe], when we put her on, it was really because… Kaitlyn is a good entertainer. Let’s put her on Dancing With the Stars.” So that’s why we placed her.”
Mills further explained: “Matt [James], last year, one of those things that said, ‘How did we not think about Matt? He looks so good. He’ll be fine. He’ll be great.” James finished 12th in the league, but Bristowe and Brown both won their seasons.
Season 31 of DWTS premieres Monday, September 19 on Disney+. The second part of the finale of “The Bachelorette” airs on ABC the following night, Tuesday, September 20.
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