Unlike the U.S. Version, ‘Married at First Sight: Australia’ Will Feature a Same-Sex Couple
A fresh group of singles is taking the plunge on a new season of Married at First Sight. But the latest iteration of Lifetime’s hit reality series will look a bit different than viewers are used to. Not only is the network bringing the Australian version of the show to American TV, but this season features a more diverse array of couples than have been seen on the U.S. show.
‘Married at First Sight: Australia’ features a same-sex couple
Married at First Sight premiered on FYI in 2014 before moving to Lifetime in 2017. So far, more than 30 couples have been matched by the show’s experts, with decidedly mixed results. All those couples have been heterosexual.
The show’s producers have said that logistical challenges make it impossible for them to match people of the same gender. But Married at First Sight: Australia has found a way around that obstacle. Craig Roach and Andy Ankers were matched on season 3 in 2016. Unfortunately, their relationship was short-lived — they broke up during their honeymoon.
In 2020, MAFS: Australia matched the first lesbian couple in the show’s history. It was also the first time an LGBTQ couple had appeared on the show since same-sex marriage was legalized in Australia in 2017. (Unlike in the U.S., couples on MAFS: Australia do not get legally married on the show.)
Meet Tash and Amanda from ‘Married at First Sight: Australia’
Tash is a bartender and yoga teacher Adelaide. With her dark hair and tattoos, she can give off an intimidating vibe, but she’s really looking for someone who can be affectionate and expressive with their emotions.
Tash is matched with Amanda, a self-described “alpha-female” from Melbourne. Amanda’s family hasn’t always been accepting of who she is, but she is looking for someone to love deeply and is hoping the show’s experts pair her with her soulmate.
Mel Schilling, one of the show’s matchmakers, told Who having a lesbian couple on MAFS was “perhaps the most important match of the entire experiment.”
Tash told the publication that she was “excited for the possibilities that this experiment is bringing.”
“I’ve never pictured my wedding day in the past. There hasn’t been that opportunity for gay people, so it’s been sort of kicked to the side for me,” she said.
Amanda also said that until recently, she had not seen marriage as an option for her. “I didn’t know where I fit in society. Gay marriage wasn’t a thing up until recently in Australia,” she said.
“I used to hate weddings… So to actually have my own wedding now I feel normal, I feel like I belong,” she added.
Not all ‘Married at First Sight’ fans are excited about the show getting more diverse
While many would argue that having a same-sex couple on Married at First Sight is long overdue, a few commenters on the show’s social media account weren’t thrilled that the cast was getting more diverse.
On an Instagram post highlighting Tash and Amanda’s ceremony, some people didn’t hesitate to share their negative reactions. One wrote that they weren’t “into same-sex marriages.” Another claimed they weren’t “hating,” but that their preference was for heterosexual relationships. Other commenters asserted that same-sex relationships were an “abomination” and frowned upon by God.
But many others were happy to see Married at First Sight embrace all types of relationships. Some urged those who were offended by the idea of same-sex couples not to tune in.
“I am so happy that they are finally doing this!!! #onelove #openmind,” wrote one.
“I’ve been waiting for an lgbtq couple!” commented another. “This is beautiful.”
Married at First Sight: Australia premieres May 27 at 9/8c on Lifetime.