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The Bachelor franchise on ABC is usually the source of harmless melodrama and romantic shenanigans, but the melodrama took a dark turn recently during filming for the new season of Bachelor in Paradise. Production was suspended after reports surfaced that one contestant may have sexually assaulted another. DeMario Jackson allegedly initiated sex with Corinne Olympios in a hot tub when she was too drunk to consent. Now, it seems that Bachelor in Paradise is taking steps to make sure that another such controversy never arises. The show is enacting a limit on alcohol on set.
Bachelor In Paradise went back into production after an investigation from Warner Bros. determined that the safety of neither of the two contestants was ever in jeopardy and no misconduct took place on set. That said, Warner Bros. did note that they planned to alter policies and procedures to guarantee that such a situation never happens again. In order to avoid contestants from becoming too inebriated during production, there will now be a 2 drink maximum per hour.
The contestants won't be responsible themselves for monitoring their drinking. To be absolutely sure that nobody gets too sloshed on set, TMZ reports that the crew and bartenders will be tasked with keeping track of how much everybody drinks. Food will also be available at all times in what is presumably an effort to absorb alcohol that has already been consumed. The controversy clearly gave the whole Bachelor in Paradise team a scare.
It should be interesting to see if the new season feels noticeably different from past seasons due to the greater restrictions on drinking. Alcohol is a big part of the Bachelor franchise, and it was never likely that drinking would be outlawed during filming. The DeMario Jackson/Corinne Olympios incident seems to be the first time that attention has been called to the negative implications of unlimited access to alcohol for the contestants.
For a while, there was actually the question of whether any of the contestants would be back at all. Production was logically halted when the possible sexual assault was reported, and the situation got ugly very quickly. If the investigation had found misconduct, I wouldn't have been shocked if Bachelor in Paradise was indefinitely cancelled. As it stands, ABC currently intends to debut Season 4 of Bachelor in Paradise this summer as originally intended, although its possible that the production delay means that the premiere date of August 8 will be pushed back. We'll have to wait and see.
If you're dying for more Bachelor franchise action before Bachelor in Paradise debuts its fourth season, you're in luck. A new season of The Bachelorette is currently airing with Rachel Lindsay as leading lady on Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. Our summer TV schedule can show you your other network small screen options, and our Netflix guide can point you in the right streaming direction.