When you mention his conservative ways, what does that mean exactly?
Chris: Well, Hannah’s a really religious woman, and I understand Hannah because I’m from the South. I grew up in the Bible Belt, and so I get that. I’m a faith-driven person as well. I understand where she’s coming from. She’s also very conservative, and her faith is very near and dear to her. And she has that connection with Luke P. She’s had it from the start. They talk about religion. They talk about their value. They talk about the Scripture. They talk about their favorite verses, and they connect on that level. She doesn’t really have that with any of the other guys. Ironically, it’s also what will drive her crazy about him because as much as it brings them together, it will also create a divide that they will battle over, and that’s the interesting thing about religion. I think that’s something we’re all going to debate: that religion is something that should bring us together, but at the same time history tells us it creates a lot of wars. And it will maybe create a big war between these two.
Would you like to see religion discussed more on the show?
Chris: It really depends season to season. I like that we’ve taken this dive into this season because it is a central part of it. We will show Luke P. going to church in Scotland and praying and getting some alone time. It’s a huge part of his life, and it really drives him. And it’s about to drive the storyline between him and Hannah. Would I like to see more? Only if it fits and only if it really plays a central figure in the show. I’m glad we’re not shying away from it in this instance because it is a part of it. And whether it’s sex or religion or both of those and how they mix, I’m glad we never shy away from those sometimes taboo social issues that will cause a lot debate around the country.
At the end of last week’s episode, Hannah tells Luke she can’t give him the rose, but as any diehard fan knows, it doesn’t mean that it’s the end of things. So does she really not give him a rose, or could it mean she’s not giving it to him right now but perhaps he could get it at the rose ceremony?
Chris: I can tell you that she does not give him the rose. But I can also tell you if you’ve ever seen an episode of The Bachelor or Bachelorette, there’s also a big “but.” While there is this Luke P. fatigue, all I can tell you is there is this amazing, bizarre, combative bond between these two people, and it’s like they’re magnets. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a relationship on this show quite like this where there’s just something there, but they get on each other’s last nerve. It’s almost like a sibling rivalry—and I hate to say that ’cause it sounds so weird, but the only thing I can even put a finger on is that it’s just such an interesting relationship. I know it might drive people crazy, but I find it fascinating to watch.
In tonight’s preview, we see you giving Hannah a hug. Is this a heart-to-heart or more of an intervention on your part?
Chris: I hate to make myself sound old, but that was more of a dad moment. I wear a lot of hats on this show, and that was a moment with this young woman that I adore that was hitting rock bottom and had just had enough and was so frustrated she couldn’t see straight. That was an ‘I’m there for you’ moment.
How serious did this get for Hannah? Obviously it’s not like Colton jumping the fence and saying he was going to quit the show, but you do ask Hannah if she feels like she can continue.