Chad Johnson Talks His New Show & Being Done With ‘Bachelor’ Girls Betches

Christmas came a little early this year people because the new season of MTV’s Ex on the Beach premiers TONIGHT at 8pm ET and it’s about to be more lit than my Aunt Alice at Christmas dinner. If you’re new to the show then I’m here to publicly shame you here’s the premise: a bunch of unsuspecting singles show up to get trashed on a beach for a few weeks because that’s the broken world we live in and is apparently the only way we can meet anyone these days. The “unsuspecting singles” are all former reality dating rejects (think some of your favorites from The Bachelorette, Are You The One?, Big Brother, and more) who just “want to find love” and a new Instagram branding partnership. Just when they start to open up to someone and prove that they’re not the emotionally stunted circus animals we’ve come to know and love, surprise! The craziest ex MTV’s budget could track down shows up to literally and metaphorically take a blowtorch to whatever scraps of happiness they’ve managed to find. It’s like what I do on a Saturday night, but these people are actually getting paid for it. Fun!

And in honor of the premiere, we spoke with the man, the myth, the meathead Chad Johnson from ABC’s The Bachelorette because—brace yourselves, betches—he’s back on reality TV and DATING AGAIN. God help us all. In the interview we talked about his return to TV with Ex on a Beach, which Bachelor girls are sliding into his DMs, and if he’s still using meats as a coping mechanism. So, let’s see what he had to say!

So we all watched you on The Bachelorette and The Bachelor in Paradise. Did you always want to be on reality TV?
No, not really. It was never so much a plan of mine. I mean I had acted and modeled before, back in 2006, and so I kind of always had it in the back of my mind. I always thought that I would end up having done something from becoming really, really, really wealthy off of some business move and I then I would just be some crazy personality of some rich guy living out in LA or something and I’d get known that way. I didn’t know that it would be through reality TV before I made my millions, you know what I mean?

Yeah, so I’m guessing you never thought you’d find love on reality TV then?
Right, no. Um, that all came about because I had just got done taking care of my mom who had passed away from cancer and reality TV came about because that was the first time I really had the opportunity to date since I had been taking care of her. You know, she had just recently passed away right before I started filming The Bachelorette.

Speaking of The Bachelorette, I know you took a little break from reality dating after Bachelor in Paradise, but now you’re back! So tell us about your new show, Ex on the Beach.
Ex on the Beach was super fun. It’s a totally different world than being on The Bachelor. It’s wild, it’s crazy, but I loved the realness of it and I loved the realness of the people. I made some awesome friends. I mean, even with my friends I had some crazy fights. So you’ll see that for sure.

So, wait, how did you not know that your ex would end up on the beach? Like, how did they get you out there?
Yeah, I had no idea. The way I thought it was supposed to go was, I was just told that it was going to be an untitled dating project. So I thought, “okay, it’s something where I’m gonna be having drinks on a beach somewhere at a mansion, hanging out, and maybe just hooking up and having fun.” And then, they dropped the ex bomb on us, and from there we knew that they had done some research on us. You know, they must have found some way to track down the girls I’d been dating over the last couple years after the shows.

Is JoJo one of the exes who will show up? Please say yes.
Ha. JoJo is not one of the exes. I haven’t talked to that girl since the reunion [of The Bachelorette] actually.

What about Lace?
No, no. Nah, I’m done with Bachelor girls. If I want to date a Miss America pageant girl I’ll go to a Miss America pageant. Or I’ll just get on my Instagram DMs.

So who do you have your eye on this season?
So, I mean this season I tried to basically be open to anything. The first day, every girl was good looking so I talked to every girl there. I think you can kind of quickly tell who’s cool and who’s really not. The first few hours there it’s like you don’t want to hit on anybody because you want to figure out whether anybody’s cool or not.

So, like, I talked to Farrah [Abraham] and quickly realized that I, uh, did not want to talk to Farrah. Then I talked to Morgan, and I’ve navigated those waters before. A pretty blonde, white chick is easy for me to get to know her, what to say and do, and it’s just kind of typical for me. That’s what I know and that’s what was easiest at the time, to do what you know. So, like, if you eat chicken every day and then you go to an unfamiliar place then you’re gonna eat chicken.

So I talked to her and then I talked to Nicole—she was beautiful. I knew she was gonna take a little bit more work to get to know because she’s more closed off in terms of initially meeting people and I could tell that. So I knew I wanted to get to know her a little bit but I knew it would take more time.

So let’s get to the drama because I’m a messy bitch and live for that sh*t. You’ve mentioned flirting with Farrah and a few other girls, and I watched the trailer and it looks like you’re already playing two girls. Can you give us any hookup details?
Um [laughs] I mean you’ll just to watch. So some stuff happens and I think it’s pretty abrupt and I think you’ll see that when you watch it. It’s drama and it’s messy, but it’s messy in a very, like, “Oh sh*t! Okay!” type of way.  

So would you say you’ve changed your ways after your Bachelor days or are you back on your bullsh*t?
Am I back on my bullsh*t? [laughs] Uh, I mean, ever since The Bachelor, I’m older now. It’s been like two and a half, three years, and I’m in a different head space now, you know? My mother didn’t just pass away. I’m not in that angry, grieving stage like I was. I went through a period of three years just dating a lot, you know? So I’m not really in that stage anymore.

I think the show did actually help me learn a bit about myself. I learned to take people’s emotions seriously whereas, you know, before I was just hopping around from Instagram girl to Instagram girl for the last few years. And I think I actually grew with the show and now I’m just focused on my businesses—my health and fitness company, my podcast—and then maybe I’m dating somebody. So you’ll just have to wait and see that on the show.

So speaking of the show, what else can we expect from you this season? You talked about hooking up, but will there be any more fights? Or any bromances over meat?
Oh there’s definitely some meat involved. I think I punted some meat, I stole some meat, so, ah, that was fun. The ex girlfriend situation was unpredictable and that ex comes in and she’s not quite who I thought she was so that’s kind of interesting. There was a lot of fights, there was a lot of arguing but it was, like, in good fun. Even when people were mad we were still having fun, you know what I mean? Everybody was always fighting and I didn’t understand what they were fighting about because 99 percent of their fights were so stupid and, like, petty so I would just run in and just watch and laugh and try and figure out what dumb sh*t they were fighting over now.

So you are back on your bullsh*t, you just weren’t the instigator this time.
Nah. See that’s my thing I’m never the instigator. I’m a reactor. You know you mess with me, sure, I’ll mess with you back. You come at me, I’ll come at you back harder. In this show it didn’t happen to me too much where people were really coming at me. I mean, don’t get me wrong—there were some instances where people do come at me wrong, and I come at them, but for the most part it wasn’t like The Bachelor where every day I’m being attacked by people. And where I feel like I’m fighting for my life basically.    

Interesting. So is there any other tea you can spill for us?
Just be on the watch for Nicole’s, ahem, untapped crazy. 

And lastly—and most importantly—what is your favorite meat?
I’m gonna have to say, like, steak. I mean, I eat chicken every day but a good steak at the end of every week has got to be the best. Hard to find in a deli meat, but by far the most delicious.

So I guess some things never change. Well we can’t wait to see you bring the drama this season.
Yeah, but I think people are gonna see a different side of me and they’ll see that really I’m, like, a lighthearted, fun guy who does have emotions. I’m not an angry jerk. I think it’ll be a lot of laughs and a lot of fun and people will get to see a totally different side of me than they’ve ever seen before.

So there you have it, people, Hell has frozen over The Chad has changed! Don’t forget, Ex on the Beach premiers tonight on MTV at 8pm ET, but you can also catch Chad recapping and talking sh*t after each episode on his new podcast “Chad’s World”. 

Images: Giphy (1); @realchadjohnson /Instagram (1)

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