We're only a week away from the premiere of the eighth season of The Bachelorette, and viewers have every right to think that this season might break the reality romance competition show mold, thanks in part to its latest star, Emily Maynard.
Maynard, a single mother based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is cut from a different cloth than former Bachelorette contestants.
Maynard, like former Bachelor Jason Mesnick, is a single parent, but Maynard's former partner and fiancé, racecar driver Ricky Hendrick, died in a plane crash in 2004. Soon after, Maynard, now 26, found out she was pregnant with their daughter.
Former bachelorette Ashley Hebert, who is engaged to her own final pick from Season 7, J.P. Rosenbaum, gushed about Maynard in a show preview and said she absolutely adored her. The two met when they were both contestants on Season 15 of The Bachelor. Maynard was Brad Womack's final pick, but the two later split.
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You could not pick a better person, Hebert said of Maynard.
Maynard has some pretty good-looking pickings this season. Her potential suitors' careers are pretty diverse -- think mushroom farmer, lumber trader. There isn't a whole lot in terms of ethnic and racial diversity -- a topic in the Bachelor franchise that's been raised more than once. There are, however, at least two Hispanics this season, both of whom hail from actual Latin American countries (Colombia and Brazil, in case you were wondering). There is also a Canadian contestant and another one from the Netherlands, if either one counts as diversity. Yeah, we didn't think so, either.
Diversity aside, this season of The Bachelorette should be one to tug at the heartstrings.
Viewers can probably expect even more romance on the show this season, if that's even possible. The Bachelorette has never been known for being particularly racy, but the single mother angle could bring a softer, more romantic side out of the contestants, which might be just fine with Maynard.
I want to meet my husband so bad, she said in a preview video. I want to find a love that lasts forever.
That's all fine and dandy, but we still hope the guys keep it funny and entertaining for the rest of us. Remember Bob Guiney's antics on Season 1 of The Bachelorette? More of that, please.
The Bachelorette premieres on May 14.
In the meantime, some chuckle-worthy moments from Seasons 4 and 5.