Think of the way you watched Peter Weber and Hannah Brown's emotional Bachelor premiere convo, and then imagine if you were actually there, watching it in real time, trying to produce a TV show.
That's how Chris Harrison watched it months ago, when it was filmed in September (on Hannah Brown's 25th birthday).
"It's riveting. When I was watching it, when we were there, it wasn't intended. We didn't know it was going to happen, and I always take the cues from the control room. When I'm sitting in a control room, and I"m looking around—and we've all been doing this a long time—and we are riveted, and we are speechless, sometimes we have tears in our eyes, that's when I know the formula still works and this concept still works, and we're onto something," he told us in a small group of reporters at ABC's TV Critics Association press tour day last week.
"I looked around the room during that conversation and you could have heard a pin drop," he continued. "Nobody was saying anything, no one was talking about what we need to do next. I twas all just let this go, stay away, because you can't write those moments. You can't script it. It was not intended. We didn't mean for that to go that way and then it did and it was spectacular."
While some might correctly argue that that conversation between Hannah and Peter could have completely ruined the rest of Peter's season, it was definitely compelling TV—more compelling than any conversation he had had with any of the women there to compete for his heart.
While we all know that Hannah went on to compete on and win Dancing With the Stars last fall and we assume Peter went on to film the rest of his season of The Bachelor and therefore the two of them did not run off into the sunset together, we have been promised a shocking ending to Peter's journey to find love.
We've also been teased with some turbulence in the opening moments of the premiere, with Chris Harrison coming to Pete and telling him that there's something he needs to know that has just come to light. That kind of flash forward isn't something this show usually goes for, and Harrison credits EP Martin Hilton with the idea.
"Someone asked me if there is a dramatic surprise ending, and I said it is a shocking, riveting, gut wrenching ending. And you saw part of that," Harrison said. "There is something that that comes to light something that happens that just kind of turns everything on its head and it is a wild twist at the end. And geniously, Martin Hilton and the post department thought, let's kind of shine a little light on that, just so you know what's coming. And yeah, it is the most dramatic—I hate to say that but it truly is, in a very different way."
As for tonight, Harrison says to be ready with a bucket of wine and a big box of chocolates, and emotionally prepare yourself to pick right back up where last week left off, right in the middle of that tear-filled convo between Peter and Hannah.
The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.