Just when you think the Bachelorette world can’t get any weirder, two of this season’s contestants have gone the extra mile by sharing a very ‘awkward’ kiss on national TV.
After departing the reality TV show during Thursday’s episode, both Jamie Doran and Ciarran Stott appeared on The Project via video link the following evening for what turned out to be a rather bizarre interview.
Right from the get-go, things took a turn for the strange when Gorgi Coghlan asked fireman Jamie to give his co-star a hug on behalf of the panel in light of his grandmother’s recent passing.
Jamie and Ciarran’s ‘awkward’ kiss
What happened next left viewers cringing.
“We all want to give him a big hug. Jamie, can you give him a hug for us please?” Gorgi requested.
“I’d love to,” the 39-year-old replied before wrapping his arms around the tattooed Brit.
The next second, Jamie planted a smooch on Ciarran’s cheek, prompting the 25-year-old to recoil.
'Woah, woah, woah. Bit much. That's a bit much,” the former exotic dancer stuttered before jokingly asking Jamie, “Don't get on stage five with me now, pal!”
“Oh mate, that’s stage six buddy, come on,” replied Jamie, who became known as a ‘stage five clinger’ on the show due to his strong feelings for Bachelorette Angie Kent.
Fans took to social media to share their reactions, with many branding the moment ‘uncomfortable’.
“Ciarran’s facials are everything,” remarked one facebook user.
“Jamie is so awkward and Ciarran looks so uncomfortable,” said another.
“When Jamie hugs Ciarran, I cringed so hard,” commented one.
“Omg what an awkward interview,” wrote another.
The Project slammed for ‘bullying’
Elsewhere in the interview, as co-host, Tom Tilly asked if Jamie had ‘felt a connection’ with Angie, one or more of his female colleagues can be heard snickering off camera.
“No, I think the candle was burning out for me toward the end...” Jamie trailed off.
“Was it even lit?” quipped Ciarran, causing Gorgi and Tarsh to erupt in laughter.
While Jamie openly embraced his ‘role’ on the show as the “stage five clinger that put out fires with his own tears,” The Project panel’s behaviour had several viewers upset, with some branding it ‘rude’ and ‘bullying’.
“They just all roast Jamie,” remarked one on Facebook.
“Could only watch a couple of minutes and got so mad at how rude they were to Jamie,” wrote another.
“Didn’t like Jamie particularly on the show but thought The Project panel was passively bullying him here,” commented one.
Others were surprised to find that, despite his intense on-screen portrayal, Jamie was ‘kinda normal’.
“Jamie actually seems... kinda normal,” commented one viewer.
“At least he can joke about himself and he realised what a clinger he was,” said another.
“You were a good sport, Jamie, you handled that well,” praised one.
Ciarran’s big regret
Also in the interview, Ciarran, who was forced to bow out of the competition following his beloved nan’s death, revealed that he can’t bring himself to watch his final episode - and not only that, he regrets the decision to leave the show.
'It was absolutely awful to leave,” he admitted.
“As you saw last night on the episode, it was very hard to do and I haven't really watched it. I watched a little bit today and it made me tear up again. I'll think I'll stay clear of watching that one,” he went on.
Ciarran added that, after emerging as a ‘frontrunner’ for Angie’s heart, the decision to quit and fly back to the UK was ‘pretty gut-wrenching’.
“I wouldn't have left the bloody show, would I? I'd have stayed on,” he responded when asked if he’d do things differently.
Ciarran for Bachelor 2020
Fans were devastated at the loss of Ciarran, who has earned praise for his refreshing confidence and wicked dress sense.
Once he made his exit, Twitter lit up with heartbroken reactions.
Host Osher Günsberg even took to the platform to commend the former contestant on showing such a vulnerable side to himself, something others agreed with wholeheartedly.
Fans are even tipping Ciarran to be the next Bachelor while others suspect he may make a grand return to the current season of The Bachelorette.
I have to say, I'm grateful to Ciarran for letting us show such an intimate moment. To witness a man grieving like this is a privilege. #BacheloretteAU
— Osher Günsberg (@oshergunsberg) October 31, 2019
Ciarran is legit one of, if not the, best contestant this show has ever seen. More men like him on our screens and in our lives please. #BacheloretteAU
— Jenna Guillaume (@JennaGuillaume) October 31, 2019
Ciarran's exit is the only time I've ever wanted a farewell montage in the Bachie franchise. Specifically an outfit montage. #BacheloretteAU
— Jessica Riley (@jesrily) October 31, 2019
The Bachelorette airs 7.30pm Wednesday and Thursday on Channel 10.
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