Evan Bass and Carly Waddell fell in love on ‘Bachelor in Paradise,’ so it’s hard for him to imagine a world without it. On the day of his wedding, he wrote a long op-ed, pleading ABC to keep the show on the air.
Following the controversy that put Bachelor in Paradise on the back burner, one half of a success couple from the franchise is speaking out. Evan Bass, who proposed to Carly Waddell on the season three finale of Bachelor in Paradise, wrote a new op-Ed for The Hollywood Reporter on June 17 begging ABC not to cancel the series. He is reportedly also set to marry Carly this weekend, and their wedding will air on the network later this summer.
“While to some it’s a silly TV show, for me, it was an experience that changed my life in unimaginable ways. I am troubled thinking about the allegations happening on my favorite beach, and I’m sad that some couples will not have the opportunity to find love in a powerful and unique way,” Evan wrote, referencing the allegations of misconduct and the ongoing investigation that’s underway to find out what happened between Corinne Olympios and DeMario Jackson that shut down production. “I can’t help but think about [season-one couple] Jade and Tanner [Tolbert], the fast-approaching birth of their baby and how that beautiful family wouldn’t exist without Paradise. And for me, I will be forever grateful to Paradise for guiding me to an incredible stepmother to my own children.”
He also went on to say he’s “disturbed” by the way production is being portrayed, and defended the network, cameramen, and even Chris Harrison and Jorge the bartender, pointing out they were never forced to drink at all. “Alcohol is treated with the respect it deserves, and sometimes contestants are asked to stop. In fact, I wasn’t allowed to drink for two weeks because of medication I was taking, and although I badly wanted a glass of wine for rose ceremonies, the staff would come running from all directions to stop me when I tried to sneak a sip or order a drink,” he wrote. “I’ve watched staff and producers stop many situations before they became a problem, even at the expense of making ‘great TV.'”
Evan didn’t take sides in the “what happened between DeMario and Corinne” discussion, but did say no one on the show shows up to hurt anyone else. “I don’t know DeMario, but the cast members I’ve spoken to that have gotten to know him say he’s a good guy. I just don’t believe that he thought he was hurting Corinne or that he knew she wasn’t able to give consent. But that’s where all men can learn,” he added. “Getting approval not just once but multiple times is the right thing and should become our society’s norm. In our society, we must learn to go above and beyond to make sure people feel safe. And I think the show is doing that by shutting down production to ensure they’ve done everything they can do to guarantee safety.”
Evan ends his op-ed by writing that he understands how serious the situation is, and he hopes everyone can begin healing from this. “Paradise must come back, if not this season, then next season. I want to watch love form and grow on ABC Mondays and Tuesdays,” he wrote. “I want to watch the next steady Jade and Tanner and also the next roller-coaster relationship like I had. Love always wins, and I trust in Paradise.”
HollywoodLifers, do you think Paradise should come back?