As Bachelor Nation anxiously awaits the June 7th premiere of The Bachelorette, featuring leading lady and sex-positive activist Katie Thurston, the off-season’s “buzz” has continued to perpetuate the 2021 streak of unprecedented media coverage with unrivaled reports of chaos and scandal. With so much drama on the ABC impetus, it was hard to imagine just three years ago, The Bachelor‘s 22nd season was once considered the “most shocking season ever” when leading man Arie Luyendyk Jr. rescinded his proposal to ring-winner Becca Kufrin months into their engagement, chasing after runner-up Lauren Burnham. Ironically one of the only successful couples to come from the male-led iteration of the franchise, Lauren and Arie share their happily married lives via YouTube, frequently posting updates about Lauren’s due-any-day-now pregnancy with fraternal twins. The couple also welcomed their firstborn daughter Alessi back in May 2019.
But the most popular contestant to emerge from season 22 is undoubtedly Bekah Martinez, who has unpredictably evolved into one of the most successful contestants throughout Bachelor Nation. Although Arie fearfully eliminated Bekah right before hometown dates, worried she was too young to settle down (one of the franchise’s youngest contestants at the ripe age of 22), the free spirit quickly proved him wrong when she turned down a role on Bachelor in Paradise and revealed she was expecting her first child with her boyfriend, Grayston Leonard. Fans were shocked that Martinez, who was constantly berated on the show for her youth, would be welcoming a child before the 37-year-old lead, especially considering she had only been dating the father-to-be for three months when she found out about her pregnancy!
Bekah Proves Bachelor Nation Wrong and Wins Them Over
Despite starting off with an uphill battle, Bekah and Grayston worked through the hardships of becoming parents so early into their relationship and currently live happily with two children in Long Beach, daughter Ruth, born in February 2019, and son Franklin, born in June 2020. The couple has focused their attention on ambitious professional pursuits– Grayston opened his rock-climbing and fitness-based gym Long Beach Rising in 2019, while Bekah strategically grew her fanbase through starting the wildly successful podcast Chatty Broads with her good friend Jess Ambrose in November 2018, concurrently taking sponsorships independently as an Instagram influencer, amassing over 700k followers.
Becoming a homeowner in southern California at 25 is no easy feat, and Bachelor Nation agrees– a recent Reddit poll on r/TheBachelor revealed Chatty Broads was voted as the best Bachelor-related podcast. Bekah also won first-place for best social media presence! Although the ambitious couple has yet to officially announce their engagement, Bekah and Grayston have openly discussed signing a sponsorship deal with a ring company on their Patreon-based podcast that recaps Bekah’s one-time stint on the show suggesting their relationship will be taking a step forward sometime soon.
Being Outspoken on Chatty Broads Has Ultimately Helped Bekah’s Career
The entrepreneur continues to remain relevant by unabashedly sharing her sometimes-controversial opinions surrounding Bachelor Nation, open relationships, and all things motherhood, and she’s never afraid of clapping back. She recently called out fans who criticized her for breastfeeding her two children at the same time and says it’s “disgusting” to witness the rampant amount of mom-shaming that happens over the internet. However, this time Bekah has been at the forefront of Bachelor Nation coverage over the past two weeks for a new controversy surrounding the spoiler king blogger Reality Steve after she questioned his fact-checking practices and blatant misogyny and bullying towards past female contestants on a recent episode of Chatty Broads.
For the uninitiated, Steve Carbone, AKA Reality Steve, has been a fixture of Bachelor Nation for over a decade, gaining large popularity after he correctly reported (see: spoiled) the winner of each season year after year, revealing juicy insider details on how a season will play out, usually before the show airs its premiere! He’s become the go-to guy for any Bachelor-related scandal, shifting his early-internet style blog for recaps and spoilers into an empire of podcasts, Instagram lives, and daily content even in the off-season. After the Chatty Broads shared their views on his shock-and-awe style of reporting and urged fans to “take what he says with a grain of salt,” things have since snowballed into a much larger issue.
Reality Steve: Spoiler King or Misogynistic Bully?
The Broads were referencing the 2018 scandal Reality Steve broke regarding Bachelor in Paradise star Jenna Cooper, claiming he had “proof” that she was a sugar baby and had been cheating on her then-fiance Jordan Kimball. The news sent shockwaves through Bachelor Nation, sparking widespread media coverage, which ultimately ended their relationship and destroyed Cooper’s reputation. It wasn’t until last year that she was finally able to vindicate herself, proving that the so-called damning evidence Reality Steve had received was a string of fake texts created by someone who wanted to ruin the reality star, involving lawyers who verified the texts didn’t come from her phone. Although Reality Steve issued an apology and retracted the story, Cooper had already suffered the consequences of his shotty reporting; dropped from her sponsors and left in the dust by no fault of her own.
When Bekah challenged Steve’s “receipts” and “sources” regarding his recent Instagram live that surrounded reports surrounding current Bachelor, Matt James had supposedly been two-timing his on-again-off-again girlfriend and season 25 winner Rachael Kirkconnell, Steve immediately reached out to the podcast co-host to aggressively defend himself. He later apologized during another live stream when season 23 and Bachelor in Paradise alum Demi Burnett concurrently tweeted her own feelings about the blogger. Demi exposed an uncomfortable phone conversation where Steve shared a graphic sex dream he had about the reality star, which he also apologized for right as it was happening during the same live.
— Demi Burnett (@demi_burnett) April 22, 2021
Chatty Broads Leads the Charge and Suggests Finding Sources Other Than Reality Steve
Very soon after, several reports started to trickle in from female contestants calling out Reality Steve, like season Bachelor in Paradise star Kristina Schulman’s accounts of being harassed by Steve about the people she has dated, reporting on her Instagram stories that “he would send me negative messages about them (which left me no room to get to know them on my own). He would send me detailed stories about them from another source, stories that I had no business of knowing.” Though the Bachelor Nation mainstay claims he cannot be canceled because he’s a one-man show and his own boss, his past transgressions have already caused his weekly Instagram live co-host and previous Bachelor contestant Ashley Spivey to sever ties, revealing on Twitter she will no longer be working with him.
After discussing his unraveling on a follow-up episode of Chatty Broads, co-host Jess Ambrose urged fans to consider finding their Bachelor content elsewhere, suggesting: “maybe it’s time to start sending spoilers and tea to someone else. I mean, there are people, there are things like @bachelornation.scoop, there’s this guy I found on YouTube named Dave Neal who’s awesome, like, there’s a bunch of people that if you dig you can find, but he has this monopoly which again brings this power dynamic.”
The Broads Have a Candid Conversation About Bekah Applying For RHOC
Amidst the drama surrounding Reality Steve, Bekah and Jess shared exciting information during last week’s episode of Chatty Broads. They revealed the popular restauranteur and OG Beverly Hills housewife Lisa Vanderpump invited them to Villa Rosa (her lush mansion) to exchange interviews for their respective podcasts, singing the cheeky Brit’s praises. Bekah also went into detail about how she’s given much consideration and thought about reaching out and applying to be on next season’s Real Housewives of Orange County! The Broads discuss not only what Bekah’s role as a housewife would look like but how she would rattle the cages of the current RHOC ‘wives, who are considerably older and more conservative than the outspoken 26-year-old.
They went on to reveal that Bekah knows previous OC housewife and fan-favorite Heather Dubrow, who “adores” her, and that the current housewife and headline-frequenter Braunwyn Windham-Burke had actually posted to her Instagram story a few months back tagging Bekah and one of the show’s casting directors, suggesting a recommendation and nudge in the right direction. “The idea just tickles me,” Bekah admits during the podcast episode, while Jess gushes over the notion of her friend going toe-to-toe with the housewives. The two even theorize how Grayston would react and what type of part he would play on the show. Bekah admits “his eyes lit up” when she mentioned that the house-husbands are also a main fixture of the show.
Bekah Would Ruffle Dusty Feathers and Bring Something Completely Unique to the Bravo Franchise
And if you thought it ended there, Bekah also went on to reveal that she’s been commenting on the controversially conservative OC housewife Kelly Dodd’s social media posts, calling her out for being shady towards her co-stars, to which Jess says “it has to be part of the strategy that there is a war before you’ve even set foot in their territory, that you and Kelly Dodd already hate each other.” As they ended the podcast, Bekah said she would ask Grayston’s parents and their “Hollywood producer friends” for advice on reaching out and applying to be on RHOC during their weekend dinner plans.
Despite her youth and living outside of Orange County, Bekah also worries she isn’t “rich enough” to be seriously considered. Still, Jess made a great point that while the Housewives franchise started out as a public display of lavish extravagance, each city’s cast members have taken several financial hits over the recent years, from bankruptcy to tax evasion and FBI indictments involving money laundering and fraud– which has happened across three franchises now! Perhaps being legally established business owners who live more practically with a modest net worth could be exactly what the next season of RHOC needs to reinvigorate the uninterested fanbase!
There’s No Better Time Than The Present After Andy Cohen Carefully Considers Casting RHOC’s Next Season
Perhaps this would be perfect timing for the Bachelor alum to expand her reality TV career, as ratings for season 15 of RHOC plummeted while receiving poor reception and consistent backlash from fans who say the flagship franchise has gone stale and flatlined. After countless negative reports, Andy Cohen revealed to E! that they will be taking their “sweet time” casting the upcoming season of RHOC and feels “no rush” to start signing contracts or begin pre-production anytime soon. Although Bekah would be the first Bachelor-housewives crossover, she may not be the youngest housewife to date depending on the season’s filming schedule, as she turns 27 next February, the same age Potomac housewife Ashley Darby began filming her first season, still holding the title of youngest housewife across the franchises at 32 years old.
We’re not sure if Andy Cohen has ever been made aware of Bekah Martinez yet, but she marches to the beat of her own drum, brings an unprecedented element as a well-known reality star through a different network, and never shies away from controversy or speaking her truth. Not to mention, she and Grayston make quite the handsome couple, which never hurts! She may decide against reaching out to Bravo, and this will be the last mention of Bekah becoming a Real Housewife. But we sincerely hope she moves forward and absolutely “stan” the witty mommy-influencer and the much-needed shakeup she could single-handedly deliver to the longest-standing flagship franchise that once led the pack.