Bachelorette Spoilers: What's Next For Karl Smith After Katie Thurston's Dramatic Decision

the bachelorette karl smith grinning abc
(Image credit: ABC)

Spoilers ahead for Episode 3 of The Bachelorette Season 17 and the upcoming Season 7 of Bachelor in Paradise.

Season 17 of The Bachelorette didn't waste any time in generating drama, with men vying for Katie Thurston's heart for the wrong reasons, confusing the leading lady, and turning cocktail parties upside down. That said, Thurston didn't waste any time in saying goodbye to the source of a lot of the early drama once the rest of the men in the house made it clear where they stood, and she said goodbye to Karl Smith early in Episode 3. But spoilers reveal that this latest episode of The Bachelorette wasn't the end of his Bachelor Nation journey.

Karl Smith remained confident that he was going to get a rose from Katie Thurston up until the very last moment, and he's evidently not soured on the whole process enough that he's ready to leave the franchise. Smith is reportedly headed to Bachelor in Paradise's upcoming seventh season, and he's sticking around beyond the beginning.

According to Bachelor Nation spoiler guru Reality Steve on Twitter, Karl Smith is heading to Bachelor in Paradise and will make it through at least one rose ceremony. That's not necessarily because he makes a better impression on the ladies of Paradise Season 7 than he did on everybody in The Bachelorette Season 17, as he's guaranteed to stick around by default since the men distribute the roses at the first ceremony. Smith reportedly gives his rose to one of the women who come to Paradise after failing to find love on Peter Weber's season of The Bachelor.

With the news of Karl Smith coming to Bachelor in Paradise, I think it's safe to say that the show is guaranteeing some drama when the various Bachelor and Bachelorette alums hit the beach to try and find love all over again. That's not to say that he'll definitely stick around beyond the first round of competition when the odds are no longer stacked in his favor, but I will say that it'll be hard for anybody to out-drama what Blake Horstmann brought to Paradise Season 6 in the aftermath of Stagecoach. Still, Smith managed to make a pretty big mess pretty quickly in Katie Thurston's season of The Bachelorette.

Season 7 of Bachelor in Paradise was already guaranteed to be one to watch due to other big changes, largely stemming from longtime Bachelor Nation host Chris Harrison being fired following his comments to former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay during Matt James' history-making season of The Bachelor (and making a lot of money in the process of losing his job). Unlike The Bachelorette Season 17, which filled Harrison's absence with Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe as co-hosts, Paradise is bringing in a series of guest hosts, including comedian David Spade, former boy bander Lance Bass, and more.

Bachelor in Paradise will return to ABC after missing 2020 due to the pandemic with Season 7 on Monday, August 16 following the end of Katie Thurston's time as Bachelorette. For now, you can catch new episodes of The Bachelorette on Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC, and if the first few episodes are any indication, the course of true love for Thurston won't be any easier than it was for the leading ladies and gents who came before her in Bachelor Nation.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. CinemaBlend's resident expert and interviewer for One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and a variety of other primetime television. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).