Summer watchlist: Watch the 25 hottest new shows of the season

9 of 25

Photo: ABC/Craig Sjodin

The Bachelorette – May 22

Starring: Rachel Lindsay

Premise: Y’all know how it works. Rachel must date 25 ( or more) suitors, whittling it down from week to week until she finds the man who will propose. It’s not new news.

What is new and exciting is that Rachel is the show’s very first Bachelorette of color (or Bachelor, for that matter). This is such good news for a franchise that has been notoriously white. In fact, the show has been accused of racism on multiple fronts. So, for them to have an African-American lead is really huge, even though it’s 20 years too late.

Of course, it’s always fun to watch the main lead go on all sorts of implausible dates, sort out the same-sex drama inside the house, and grapple with her own feelings of “love” and rejection. But this season promises to be one of the best ever. ABC knows it’s got a lot of eyes on it, and therefore will really have to dial up the drama to keep all those viewers pacified. Who knows? Maybe we’ll get a gladiator-style fight to the death. That’s one way to give audiences what they want.

The buzz: Everybody is pretty pumped about the shake up. And it looks like ABC has collected quite the motley crew for her potential mates. There’s lots of talk about what type of man will win her heart, and we’re pretty excited to see it unfold, as well.

Where to watch: ABC