Billy Eichner seemingly predicted that season 23 star of The Bachelor, Colton Underwood was “the first gay Bachelor.” A 2019 clip from the hit ABC show has resurfaced, in which the comedian appeared as a guest, playing a “camp counselor.” He said to Colton, “I’m gay, I know that’s a shock, Colton. That I think you should look into. Maybe you’re the first gay Bachelor and we don’t even know.” Billy, who was poking fun at the former reality star for being a virgin, added, “Put that in your promo.”
— Yann (@yannhatchuel) April 14, 2021
In the wake of the clip going viral, Billy tweeted, “I’m happy for [Colton]. If you’re gay, be gay! I’ve been gay forever & I love it.” Colton, who was the lead on the 23rd season of The Bachelor, came out as gay on the April 14 episode of Good Morning America. “I’m gay,” he began. “I came to terms with that earlier this year and have been processing it. The next step in all of this is sort of letting people know. I’m still nervous, but it’s been a journey for sure.” The former athlete cited the turmoil of the past 12 months when explaining why he decided to come out publicly.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) April 14, 2021
“I would’ve rather died than say I’m gay [before],” he said during the interview, revealing that he considered “harming himself” at one point. “There was a moment in LA when I woke up and I didn’t think I was going to wake up,” Colton admitted. “I didn’t have the intentions of waking up and I did. I think for me, that was my wake up call. This is your life, take back control. Looking back even beyond that, [there were] suicidal thoughts. If I was driving my car close to a cliff and think, ‘If this goes off a cliff, it’s not a big deal’. I don’t feel that anymore.”
“I’ve known that I’ve been difference since the age of six and I couldn’t process it and put my finger on what it was until high school, my freshman year,” Colton continued. “By that time, I’d already grown up in the Catholic church and gone to Catholic grade school. I learned in the Bible that being gay was a sin. I would make mistakes in my sports and athletic career, and ‘gay’ was always affiliated with a connotation of negativity. I think there’s a lot of things when I look back, I’m like, no wonder I’ve held it in.”
Producers of The Bachelor said in a statement to HollywoodLife that they fully supported Colton. “We are so inspired by Colton Underwood’s courage to embrace and pursue his authentic self. As firm believers in the power of love, we celebrate Colton’s journey in the LGBTQIA+ community every step of the way.”