Most “Bachelor” fans would rank Krystal Nielson as the standout villain of Arie Luyendyk Jr.’s season. The bachelor himself eventually became season 22’s true villain after publicly trading his chosen fiancée Becca Kufrin for his runner-up (and now wife) Laura Burnham. Still, Nielson fueled the lion’s share of fan bitterness this season before the explosive end.
The 34-year-old fitness trainer explained on the June 16, 2022 podcast, Talking It Out with Bachelor Nation, that spoiler king Reality Steve once called her the “worst villain.”
Nielson explained that she went on Bachelor in Paradise hoping to redeem herself. The last thing she expected was to fall in love with another Bachelor Nation villain and end up walking off the set engaged.
Chris Randone was also considered a villain. He was in season 14 of The Bachelorette. Ironically, he was vying for the affections of Becca Kufrin, the same woman who humiliated Luyendyk on national television when he left her for his now-wife.
In a strange karmic twist, Nielson and Randone met and fell in love on the beaches of Mexico in BIP’s fifth season. Randone proposed to Nielson on the season finale, and the couple were married by host Chris Harrison on BIP’s sixth season on June 16, 2019, Us Weekly reports.
Nielson told Bachelor Nation that she felt “so much shame, rejection, unloving and invisibility” when she was branded a villain on The Bachelor. She continued, “When I went to ‘Paradise’ I was so excited to get a second chance. Looking back, there was so much to unpack there.” When she met and fell in love with Randone, many of those negative feelings dissolved.
However, after realizing the marriage wasn’t working, she worried that a divorce would make her look like the villain again. Nielson admitted to Bachelor Nation, “When I decided to divorce, I was really scared that outside of this relationship I was going to be the bad guy again. I thought that I would not be loved or accepted and would be seen as a failure.”
Nielson’s insecurities about being labeled a villain may have kept her in the marriage longer than she normally would have. She admitted on the Bachelor Nation podcast, “We fought for a long time whether we would separate and whether we would be ready. It was really scary for both of us. It was really hard.”
Nielson was largely labeled a villain for spitting hateful words at The Bachelor and her fellow bachelors. The most notable case occurred when Luyendyk invited the losing bowling team to the evening date when they were supposed to be sent back to the mansion. Nielson couldn’t contain her anger at this turn of events.
In a “Hot Mic” tirade, Nielson called Luyendyk a liar and “fancy pants.” Thinking her mic was off, she told the producers, “I’m sorry, I’m dating men‘ after complaining about putting her ‘amazing’ life on hold to do the show.
More footage of Nielson’s tirade was revealed on The Women Tell All, when she was shown calling Luyendyk a “Needle D***”. She also called the other candidates c***s. Castmates and the rest of America were shocked and horrified, reports E! News.
Randone was considered a villain, according to Popsugar, due to his ongoing conflicts with some of his roommates and attempts to manipulate Kufrin.
Both Nielson and Randone have moved on since the divorce. Bachelor Nation admits that Nielson is “grateful to now be in a happy relationship with boyfriend Miles Bowles, with whom she shares daughter Andara Rose.”
Randone is still causing trouble among the other Bachelor Nation contestants. According to a February 2022 article on Monsters and Critics, “Chris Randone accused former friends of ignoring him and faking public relationships” in “several vague Instagram stories.”