OK. Now that the end has been revealed... I am shocked but then again not shocked. How can this be you ask?
First... I think many of us suspected Franklin as being straight due to the way the producers "paired up" the straight guys in the groups. My gaydar still says he's gay. I am having it (my gaydar) serviced by a qualified professional on Thursday.
In watching the last copuple of episodes again... I noticed that James in episode 5 stated that he was going to have to "confront" the straight guy. I tend to believe that in one of their production meetings after James was told of the twist, the producers either suggested to, or flat out told James that he would need to "CONFRONT" the straight guy. The key word here is confront (confrontation) which, as all reality TV show producers know, makes for drama in reality TV. I understand that James would need to "deal with his feelings" regarding the straight guy, but a confrontation seems a little over dramatic to me. Especially for someone as laid back as James.
Poor Franklin really got the bad end of the deal. It is obvious from the episodes that he is a warm, soft hearted, careing, and emotional individual. He was left all alone to deal with James' frustration. (Keep in mind Franklin is only 23.) I am sure that Franklin realized (in the last days after it was too late) that he was in for a real bad time. Notice how alone he felt in the last episode. No matter what the outcome, he was going to be the bad guy. Franklin said "I'm sorry" to James several times during their final meeting. In fact, it was the very first thing out of his mouth when James pegged him as straight. Had he been picked and won the $25,000 he would have probibly felt even worse. Of all of the people on the show... Franklin got the worst deal.
I'm sure the "sales job" the producers gave to all of the cast members (even the straight ones)in this show was a quite different senario than what actually transpired.
Second... The producers tried (by the snippits in the previews and promos) tried to make us think it was Wes who was the straight one. Example... he looks at James and says "So what made you think that I was Gay?" Post production editing can do wonders.
Finally... I was suprised that James picked Wes over Brian but keep in mind, we don't get to see what really happend.. only what the producers put in the show. It is possible that James and Wes had much more of a connection than was shown on TV. Remember they don't want us to know who James picks until the last episode. If Wes and James had a great connection from the beginning, and it was shown throughout all the episodes... there would have been no suprise at the end. Editing can easily change the "feel" of a reality TV show. Simply edit out most of the connected moments between James and Wes and use just the minimum footage necessary to keep Wes in the show. (footage of Wes interacting with other mates, etc) Wes did seem very sincere and seems to be a really nice guy and at the end, it did seem that Wes and James had a connection.
And for what it's worth I think that maybe James didn't pick Brian H. because he was a little "too needy and unsure of what he wanted". He fell for Dan... then he was falling for James. I think Brian H. is a really nice guy and will make someone a good catch but from a maturity level, Wes at 24 seems more mature and grounded than Brian H at 29
I still believe like I said in an earlier post, This show has done alot to break down the stereotypes and help people see that, as James said, "We are all just the same... we are all looking for love"