By Bridget Sjoberg | News Editor
The premise sounds like a typical reality show filled with drama, relationships and betrayal—Bachelor in Paradise brings together past cast members from The Bachelor or The Bachelorette and films their interactions and conflicts on a beach in Mexico.
And that description is pretty spot on—cast members form relationships, can ask each other out on dates when selected and give out roses each week to the person of their choice. There are fights, tears and drama, but Bachelor in Paradise is more than just craziness being filmed on the beach. There’s a reason that the show actually has a decent success rate for couples coming out of the experience in serious relationships or engaged.
Unlike the other two Bachelor franchise shows, the cast members on Bachelor in Paradise actually have the opportunity to spend quality time with each other. If they stay on the show for its entirety without being sent home, that’s nearly a month of 24/7 time to interact and get to know others on the beach.
The Bachelor and the Bachelorette don’t allow for nearly that much interaction—by the time a couple gets engaged by the season finale, they have typically gone on only two or three one-on-one dates with each other. The rest of their interactions come from group dates or conversations during cocktail parties. Although there are some success stories, it’s common for couples to split up once the show is over when they realize that they are not actually compatible in real-life scenarios.
Bachelor in Paradise, on the other hand, allows for more genuine interaction—people have time to meet each other and get to know cast members that they choose to pursue. This system is a more natural setup where people can choose to form relationships from a wide variety of people on the beach, as opposed to one man or woman dating 25 contestants at one time. Cast members are able to find people that are better suited for them.
There have been genuine relationships that have come out of Bachelor in Paradise—the show started in 2014 and has led to four successful marriages, an engagement and two couples in serious relationships so far. A few of those relationships were formed by two people who originally weren’t interested in each other or where the interest was one-sided. However, after becoming friends and spending time getting to know each other, they ended up forming a stable relationship.
Bachelor in Paradise also gives previously unknown or underrepresented cast members a chance to show their personality and be seen in a different light. Members like Krystal Nielson, the “villain” of her season on The Bachelor, or Evan Bass, someone made fun of on his season of The Bachelorette, gained popularity after showing different sides of themselves on Bachelor in Paradise. Both ended up getting married to other cast members on the show.
Although Bachelor in Paradise has all the typical ridiculous elements that make up any reality show, it also allows contestants more time to know each other personally and in more realistic social scenarios, giving couples a greater chance at forming long-term relationships.
Bachelor in Paradise airs at 7 p.m. central on Mondays and Tuesdays on ABC.