Ben Flajnik, the 28-year-old winemaker whose marriage proposal Ashley Hebert rejected on the season finale of The Bachelorette, will be named the franchise’s next Bachelor, EW’s sources confirm. If producers had to hire from within, I do believe he’s the best option (especially after Ames Brown dared to do Bachelor Pad). Ben took the show seriously enough to get upset when he was rejected after being led on, but not so seriously that he pretended it would scar him for life. He cried on-camera while discussing his late father, apologized to his mother for not having been there more for her, and thanked Ashley for opening him back up after that great loss and actually meant it. Plus, we already get copious amounts of wine on the show, but with his romantic profession giving producers a legitimate reason to have bottles uncorked, it’s going to be Cougar Town! (Seriously, one group date should be to the set of Cougar Town, where Ben and select ladies are extras for a scene.)
Still, as happy as I am to actually like a Bachelor, it does makes me nervous. It’s like I said when Chris Lambert was being courted for the gig last year: Do we actually trust producers to set Ben up with 25 sane women worthy of him? No. They’ve got a TV show to make. The minute Ben decides to keep a 21-year-old who bites through a can or reads bad poetry to make a good first impression, it’s over. To quote Duckie from Pretty in Pink (because why wouldn’t I when talking about matters of the heart?): “I’m not particularly concerned with whether or not you like me, because I live to like you and… and… and I can’t like you anymore.” (Clarification: I do not actually live to like Ben, but genuinely liking someone who has appeared on this show is validation for watching it all these years. Also, I liked Lambton more.) After reading that argument, 68 percent of readers still wanted Lambton to be the Bachelor. Let’s take Ben to a vote below!