Married at First Sight is based on a Danish show where 3 couples are matched up scientifically and meet for the first time on their wedding day. The show is hosted by 4 specialists: sexologist, Dr. Logan Levkoff; spiritualist, Greg Epstein; psychologist, Dr. Joseph Cilona; and sociologist, Dr. Pepper Schwartz. Together, they devise a lengthy questionnaire (one girl said it took her 6 hours), attraction tests (through people’s pictures), and interviews to determine who should be matched up with whom. The series takes the viewer through the selection process, the weddings, honeymoons, and 4 weeks of living together. At the end, the couples have to decide whether to stay married or to divorce. Remember they don’t even learn the name of the future spouse until they are standing at the altar.
I think this show is genius and people should be getting married in this fashion. While watching the casting special several facts were given. Dr. Cilona said divorce rates between non-arranged marriages is 50-60% and for arranged are 4%. People think all arranged marriages are bad but in this case it is good. In normal arranged married, couples are put together by their family members for the benefit of social standing, money, or preserving genetics. Other marriages have a range of reasons as well. Even if you say they marry for “love”, they may not be compatible in other ways. It seems lots of people get married without thinking how they will handle finances and children. Some get married because they were both drunk in Las Vegas. I believe this show takes people’s personalities, physical preferences, and personal/social beliefs into account to find a good match. In normal practice, you would probably have them meet before getting married but it would be a much better start then some random person on the street.
Now for the details of the show; a casting call was done without telling them about the marriage part. There was a room full of people. Once they were told about the marriage stipulation, people started walking out but not all at once. Fifty people said yes the process and then narrowed down to 18. The specialists sat in a room debating who would be the best couples out of the 18 finalists. They discussed people’s pasts and their current lifestyles to pick the final 3 couples.

Final 6:

Monet – 33 – Harlem – Fashion Product Developer
She is a conflicted Christian who wants her husband to be a leader but still respect her in their partnership.
Jason – 27 – Brooklyn – EMT (training to be a Firefighter)/Pro Wrestler
He works the night shift and lives with his cancer-stricken mother. He goes to church but sees it more as a calming, peaceful experience.
Cortney – 26 – NY (from NC) – Makeup Artist
She shares a 1 bedroom apartment with a roommate and their rooms are separated by a curtain. She is also a Burlesque dancer who is looking for her soul mate.
Doug – 31 – NJ – Software Salesman
He moved in with his parents after being laid off but is recently employed and plans to move out. His parents are very involved in the interview. Religiously he considers himself open-minded and does attend services.
Vaughn – 30 – Long Island, NY – Industrial Technician (black)
He asked for the doctor to take her shoes off before entering the home. He was in the Air Force with the Thunderbirds (like we should know what that is). He thinks his demanding job kept him from meeting people. He likes traditional gender roles, curvy women, and is looking for a real commitment.
Jamie – 27 – RN
She grew up with a drug addicted mother who was in a bad relationship. They lived in a trailer park with little money. She took legal guardianship over her 2 younger siblings at age 20. She says she is picky and not willing to open up so quickly. Personality is most important to her and wants to marry into a loving family.

The people were told they had a match less than a week before the scheduled weddings. It looked like all the people had to do was pick out clothing and maybe food but everything else would be arranged.

The Couples (with the specialists’ reasoning):

Jamie & Doug
Both late bloomers, outgoing/social people, Strong family for Jamie to join
Monet & Vaughn
Traditional gender roles, positive (military) father role models, supposedly the highest compatibility
Cortney & Jason
Adventurous (pro wrestling/burlesque), family oriented

Wedding Day

Jamie & Doug
Doug made picture charts about who is in his family for Jamie. Jamie said she wasn’t wowed by him. Uh oh, she is barely looking at him. She said she decided to just go through the motions. She is on the floor after the pictures by herself crying. That’s a good start to the marriage. She feels the experts failed her. After the speeches and some dancing, it looks like Jamie is having a good time.
Monet & Vaughn
Monet’s godfather is walking her down the aisle and saying nice words like this is going to be forever. During the wedding, I think you could have knocked Monet over with a feather.
Cortney & Jason
Cortney’s family is not happy about this whole thing and cannot attend. His mother couldn’t make it to the wedding because of the effects of chemotherapy treatments. The tag team partner is not happy he is doing this experiment because it would take time away from their work. Cortney sent “her future husband” a card and signed as wifey. It turns out Cortney’s father and brother are fire fighters so I guess that is good. She seemed happy about it.
It’s funny that the guy walks in to the room and both families are in there so the girl’s family gets to at least see him before the marriage even if it is moments before. People clapped for the guys as they walk in. Some of the guys introduced themselves to the brides’ families while waiting. After the weddings, the couples had a few minutes to talk to each other and take pictures. There was the reception and the episode ends with the couples leaving to go to their hotel rooms.
I like the show. I think there will be a good amount of drama especially when they have to live together. Someone told me I should try to find the shows in the other countries and see how they compare.