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How Long Has ‘The Bachelor’ Been on TV?

In May 2024, The Hollywood Reporter announced that ABC was renewing several of its cornerstone reality series for the 2024-25 season. Among them was The Bachelor, meaning it would return for a twenty-ninth season.

The dating show, which follows a single bachelor who is provided several romantic interests from which he must ultimately choose a fiancée, is so popular and successful that it has spawned multiple spin-offs, including The Bachelorette, Bachelor Pad, Bachelor in Paradise, and The Golden Bachelor, as well as several international editions, including in Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Greece, and Israel.

But how long has the show been on the air? When did ABC start showing The Bachelor season 1?

When did The Bachelor first air?

The Bachelor
Image via ABC

The Bachelor first aired on March 25, 2002, so it has been on television for over 22 years.

For the first 25 seasons, Chris Harrison hosted the show. However, after being temporarily removed for defending a contestant in an Extra interview accused of racism, he permanently left in 2021. Former NFL linebacker and Fox Sports 1 analyst Emmanuel Acho stepped in during Harrison’s initial absence. The show is now hosted by Jesse Palmer, who served as the fifth eponymous Bachelor in 2004.

The Bachelor has endured its fair share of criticism — for its lack of ethnic and cultural diversity and stigmatizing virginity, for example — but, for the most part, it’s enjoyed by its millions of viewers. We hope it learns from its mistakes going forward and look forward to the much-loved show continuing. You don’t reach 29 seasons without thoroughly entertaining the masses.

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