"Whether I agreed with it or not, I didn't want her to feel stupid or vulnerable or judged," said the former Bachelor of the moment

By Benjamin VanHoose
September 01, 2020 10:56 AM
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Nick Viall is still thinking about one of the more shocking moments from his Bachelor season.

On Monday, The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons Ever did a retrospective of Viall's 2017 season, including an early scene when contestant Corinne Olympios separated herself from the other women by separating herself from her bikini top.

Olympios, in the episode, jumped into a swimming pool next to Viall for an intimate photo shoot, quickly ripping off her bikini top to reveal her bare chest to the Bachelor, her fellow contestants, the camera crew and all of Bachelor Nation.

Catching up with Entertainment Tonight this week, Viall, 39, recalled the moment as "uncomfortable."

"It was really uncomfortable; it sucked," he said. "I mean, I'm all sex-positive and all that stuff, but ... you're in a tough spot, right? ... I was literally 10 feet from the rest of the women, they were watching. And I also recognize that Corinne was taking a risk."

"Whether I agreed with it or not, I didn't want her to feel stupid or vulnerable or judged," added Viall. "So you're really stuck between a rock and a hard place, so to speak. It wasn't my favorite moment."

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Despite being caught off-guard by the moment, Viall — who mentioned he has "pretty good memories" from his season of The Bachelor — kept Olympios, 28, all the way until the final four.

"I'm proud, in a weird way, I took someone like Corinne far," he said. "I don't think in other seasons some of those women would have gone as far because I think sometimes, especially The Bachelor, feels like you're being judged. You play it safe, so to speak. I've never played it safe and I think that made for a really good season."

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While shooting the episode at the time, Olympios told the cameras that she was proud of the stand-out scene. “Dad would be proud,” she said during her interview while holding a coveted rose. “Even though I was naked.”

Writing in an exclusive blog post for PEOPLE during his season, Viall opened up about his first impression of the then-24-year-old blonde following the season 21 premiere.

“Corinne was a woman who certainly brought her confidence that night. When she came back for a second conversation, I was a little surprised but at the same time I respected the assertiveness,” he wrote. “I appreciated Corinne being confident enough to take a chance and put her relationship with me above everything else.”