There’s still no sign of Hurricane Martha so far during the farewell season of Party Down South, but that doesn’t mean the house is without a natural disaster — this vacay, it’s turning out to be the relationship between our beloved Boudreaux, Lyle, and his allegedly unfaithful fiancée Santana.
Last week, the episode ended with poor Lyle heading back to his hometown to collect his belongings.
After weeks of his housemates trying to convince him Santana was bad news, Lyle has apparently seen the light and decided to call off the engagement. Predictably, the housemates are relieved by this change of heart, but mostly everyone just feels bad Lyle’s been nursing a broken heart all season.
According to Sally Ann Salsano, 495 Productions president, and founder and creator/executive producer of Party Down South, the decision to let Lyle leave was an easy one.
“It was a never-ending circle,” she explained to SheKnows via an exclusive interview. “He just wasn’t sleeping, so one hour he would want to go home to break up and one hour later he just wanted to make sure she was OK. The next hour he didn’t want to go because he was fine. Twenty minutes after that he was crying and needed to go. For everyone involved, we knew he just needed to go and work it out, no matter what he wanted to do.”
The mood in the house is somber after his departure, so the housemates decide to do what they do best — hit up a local bar and drink their blues away. OK, OK. In their defense, Tiff, Walt, Lauren, Cody and Hott Dogg actually just headed to Moon River Brewing Company to have lunch.
Happily, things did get wild once the crew got there, albeit not in the typical way they’ve been known to get wild while at a bar (there was nary a pretzel in sight).
Rather, they find out the building Moon River is housed in is supposedly super haunted. So, naturally, Tiffany is intrigued and all too eager to sign the house up for a paranormal tour. Then a moment of genius strikes: They’re not going to tell Daddy it’s a ghost tour.
Ha! God love ’em.
Before the evening debauchery can begin, though, Mattie calls her sister Meggie and, well, it’s not good news. Not only did Meggie learn there are pre-cancerous cells on her ovaries, but the girls’ grandpa is set to undergo a major surgery.
Understandably, Mattie — who has been such a rock all season long — is visibly distraught. She really does decide to drink away her blues, and the poison she picks is shots. Before long, she’s feelin’ some type of way.
You know who else is feelin’ some type of way? Lyle. In a surprise twist, his transit home included a rambling confession via text message from Santana.
Bits and pieces of the truth come popping out as Lyle reads through it out loud: “At Mudfest, we was both drunk when we went in the camper… because I did f*** up; I know I did… he told me he loved me and a girl would, in a way, want…”
Hold for one minute while I pick my jaw up off the floor.
OK, I’m back. Did this chick really just deny anything happened, accuse Lyle’s housemates and best friends of being liars and stage elaborate cover-ups roping in her best friend? Why, yes. Yes, she did. Sadly, everyone was right to suspect her — even if she does still insist they didn’t have sex, but basically did.
As my grandma used to say, you can’t put lipstick on a pig. A betrayal is a betrayal, no matter how you dress it up, girly, and this was a big ‘un.
In what could have all been part of Santana’s big plan (I can’t decide if she’s just shady or an actual evil genius), this revelation sends Lyle’s head spinning.
“I would say hurt, relieved, betrayed — all of it,” Salsano said of Lyle’s mental state in that moment. “The biggest thing he kept saying was that he was just glad he knew. Now that he officially knew, he could make an informed decision and move forward for a change, instead of this insane vicious circle he was forced into dealing with.”
Back in Savannah, local paranormal expert Ryan from Savannah Ghost Research Society has begun the housemates’ tour of Moon River Brewing Company. And, you guys, it takes Daddy a solid 10 minutes or more to actually catch on this is not a pub crawl of some sort.
Once the “hunt” is underway, it gets creepy real fast.
Meters start beeping, the girls start screaming. So did they really see something?
Possibly. “The boy’s didn’t… except for Daddy, maybe. Hannah thinks she saw something, but she is for sure the scaredy cat of the group, which I find endearing about her. She’s a sucker for a good scare or a good prank,” revealed Salsano.
Meanwhile, Lyle is dealing with the skeletons in Santana’s closet. He is now at her place to see if she’ll come clean to his face.
To be honest, I don’t think she thought the end game out here. Maybe she assumed Lyle wouldn’t read the text message out loud for the camera? It still seems like she is trying to cover her tracks when the cameras are up close and personal.
Lyle seems to see through it and, even though it obviously guts him, he calls for a break. He manages to hold onto a little hope, however, saying, “Sometimes when things are falling apart, it might be falling into place.”
Atta boy, Lyle — don’t quit us yet! We need to see our good ol’ duck-calling, lobster-fartin’ buddy back in full force before we bid Party Down South adieu for the last time.
At the house, Mattie isn’t faring much better than Lyle emotionally. The brush with the afterlife was enough to push her over the edge, and she starts to lose her shit a bit.
But in yet another sign our sweet Mattie girl is all grown up, she doesn’t go full Martha and start wrecking stuff. Instead, she calls everyone together and tells them she has to go home and handle her family affairs.
The next day, Mattie is gone, it’s pouring rain, Cody is leaving (with their little dog, too) and life is basically just the worst.
Realizing everyone is in dire need of a distraction, the Terror Twins decide to use the recent paranormal activity experience to their advantage. Daddy is all in as well, hoping to get revenge for the haunted tour prank.
Murray runs distraction while Daddy and Walt run fishing line — all over the place, attached to lamps and all sorts of stuff sure to scare the ever-lovin’ life out of the girls.
Interestingly, Daddy is weirdly good at rigging the boo-by traps. (Dayageddit? Boooo-by traps?) He’s like a savant of sabotage.
As everyone is chilling on the porch later, the Terror Triplets seize the moment. A string of buoys behind Tiffany start rattling and she is sure they’ve brought home a rogue spirit. Just as she starts to poke around, potentially spoiling the gag, Mattie gets back and everyone runs off to see her.
Undeterred, Tiff resumes her investigation when they get back to the porch. Only, then Lyle walks in. At that point, the girls are glad to forget about their ghosts for a second and talk about what’s been haunting Lyle.
“I got a full-fledged, detailed, point A to point B message,” he told his housemates. Everyone seems slightly shocked by this news, but mostly vindicated. Plus, you know, relieved for Lyle… they think.
When he calls he and Santana’s break a “trial run,” no one seems convinced he’s ready to exorcise Santana just yet.
One thing’s for certain: We’re bound to see how everyone’s ghosts shake out “in due time,” hints Salsano. This of course includes what becomes of those boo-by traps Walt, Daddy and Murray rigged all around the house.
“This was the best prank season yet,” Salsano gushed. “The Terror Twins went all out! You’ll see how it pays off shortly.”
That’s not the only drama and intrigue in the near future, either. “Does DJ come back? Maybe, maybe not. Can Tiff and Bubba’s relationship last the whole summer?” teases Salsano. “The gang takes a road trip to NASCAR and, as we all know, when these guys hit the road, it gets pretty crazy.”