Salley Carson’s trip to Bachelor In Paradise was almost as quick as her stint on The Bachelor, but production seemed determined to make the most out of her short time and drag her name through the mud while doing so. While there wasn’t even enough time to get Salley in a BIP interview chair, her suitcase has become the star of season 8. Meanwhile, Salley hardly got her toes in the sand before she got frustrated that Genevieve Parisi and Shane Ankey were asking questions about her ex. Salley said, “this is why I missed three flights.” Salley commented she didn’t want to air dirty laundry about her past relationship out of respect for her ex and that her “gut feeling was not to come.” Salley didn’t give producers much to work with, but that didn’t mean hope was lost for a Salley storyline.
After three missed flights, BIP’s producers definitely wanted revenge. She spent all of fifteen minutes on the beach, but she’d cost ABC a lot of time and money. Between Salley’s flights, the producers’ flights, the day rates for the week the BIP producer spent herding Salley onto a plane, and whatever it cost to transport Salley’s bag from the airport in Mexico, the production budget had a vengeance against Salley. Producers are often evaluated by how much drama they can create on a dime—the less money spent and the bigger the audience, the more successful the producer. Between BIP’s vibrator-gate, Wells’ reenactment segment, and the latest suitcase bits, producers are getting their moneys’ worth.
The final ode to Salley appeared to be a moment of zen scene at the end of episode 5 that showed Salley’s suitcase taking a sexy shower, lounging by the pool, and becoming a puppet on Wells’ hand. ABC didn’t hire Wells as their full-time host but did give him the big opportunity to reenact all Salley’s drama and then play Salley’s suitcase. In the role of Salley’s suitcase, Wells joked in a high-pitched accent, “usually what happens is the luggage gets lost, but this time around, the person got lost, and the luggage made it! Hoorayyy for TSA!.” Wells continued, “I’ve spent the last year really working on myself. I got new wheels, I got a new handle, I’ve been going to therapy. I’m not here to make friends with that dumb**s duffle bag. I’m here to find my forever person, my Louie Vuitton bag.” This was Wells’ second shot at breaking out his humor for the sake of the Salley storyline, and he showed up and showed out.
Bachelor In Paradise’s Last Chance To Capitalize on Salley
Salley’s fifteen minutes of screen time was dwarfed by her suitcase’s. What points to revenge more than anything is that all these bits and jokes about Salley brought way more attention to her ex than Genevieve or Shanae ever could. However, it should be noted that the suitcase labeled Salley in all caps by sharpie on a yellow piece of duct tape likely wasn’t Salley’s suitcase at all. It was probably a prop to avoid the legality issues around opening Salley’s real suitcase without her presence.
While clearly petty, some credit goes to the BIP producers for leaning into the camp humor and away from the drama. Giving airtime to Salley’s suitcase and Jared Haibon and Ashley Iaconnetti over relationship turmoil are delightful choices. However, all the shenanigans could easily open the door for a defamation case from Salley or her ex. If that comes to fruition, here’s hoping they leave Wells and his phenomenal acting skills out of it.
Bachelor In Paradise airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.