We have a confession to make; Channel 4’s Married at First Sight is fast becoming our ultimate ‘guilty secret’ show.
The concept is pretty simple; a group of experts analyse applications from singletons, pairing them up with the most ‘scientifically-perfect’ spouse. This results in a legally-binding wedding between two complete strangers (hence the title), a honeymoon, and a six-week period where the new husband and wife live together and see what’s what.
Sound crazy? That's because it sort of is. And, at the time of writing this article, only one of the four couples matched up in the 2016 series of the show have decided to stay together.
Is this unusual? Hardly. In fact, it’s worth remembering that Married At First Sight (which is also made in Australia and the US) has never enjoyed a higher success rate than 25%. And that’s only taking into account the first six months, let alone the first six years of the relationship!
Here’s a look at the duos who called it quits – and those who have decided to trust in ‘science’ and stay together (for now)…
1. Sara and Adam
Relationship status: Split
We sort of guessed that things weren’t going to work out for Sara and Adam – especially when they had a massive fallout on honeymoon over his drinking. So it wasn’t a massive surprise to learn that, just one month after moving in together, they had called time on their ill-fated marriage.
“I think that science matches the compatibility between us; what the science can't match or can't create is the chemistry,” Sara explained.
2. Melissa and Clark
Relationship status: On a break
Yup, just like Friends’ Ross and Rachel, Melissa and Clark are taking a break from their marriage, as the move to Milton Keynes proved too stressful. However, for all those rooting for the couple, don’t despair; they haven’t completely given up on love just yet...
In fact, they’ve (rather sensibly) decided to keep seeing together, albeit without living in the same place and subjecting themselves to all the extra pressures that married life can bring.
Writing on social media, Clark said: “This married at first sight thing has sent us both round the bend – I’m very lucky to have met Melissa and intrigued to know where the future will take us!
“Melissa is an amazing woman who is beautiful, funny and everything I could ask for as a wife – the time apart will give us a chance to properly date and get to know each other in normal circumstances.
It seems a if Melissa agreed, as she said during the show finale: “We've not got to do all of the normal stuff couples do when they meet each other.”
3. Lucie and Steve
Relationship status: Split
We never had high hopes for this one, as things were awkward between Lucie and Steve from the get-go – and his shyness towards her on honeymoon only added to that. He wanted to take it slow, she wanted to get romantic ASAP and see if that helped… and being on such different pages didn’t help matters at all.
“There is a little spark but no fireworks,” he said. “Being married to Lucie is not what I expected.”
He later told her that he felt like they were more like friends than two people in a relationship – while she corrected him telling him they were in fact man in wife. Awkward.
4. Caroline and Adam
Relationship status: Still together
Caroline and Adam got on like a house on fire when they first met, proving to have a very similar sense of humour and love of all things geeky – and even felt confident enough to kiss on their wedding night.
While they seemed to hit a rocky patch when discussing where they should live (both were tied to their jobs in London and Bournemouth respectively), the couple stuck it out – and it seems as if they may have found their ‘happy ever after’.
Praising their matchmakers, Caroline said: “The experts have done a really good job. I think they will be on our Christmas list forever.”
The pair recently announced that they’ve welcomed a new addition to the family. Yup, you guessed it; they’ve only gone and adopted a pet rabbit together – and his name is Nigel.
Following the show, viewers have since taken to Twitter to express their dismay over the failed matches – with some even going so far as to liken the splits to the misery experienced over Brexit and President Elect Donald Trump.
“Disappointed more couples didn't stay together in #MarriedAtFirstSight this just proves science can't match you. True love is a rare thing,” wrote another.
A fellow fan added: “Felt so sad at the end ..3 out of 4 didn't work out. Gutted for them all but especially for #ClarkandMelissa.”
The show’s failure to match people up with their ‘true love’ has led to a number of viewers questioning whether the show – which organises the civil ceremony – foots the divorce bill.
Well, according to the executive producer of the US show, they usually don’t – preferring to use their budget to fund an all-expenses honeymoon for each couple.
He added that Married at First Sight only provides assistance “within a certain period” to cover the legal costs, although the amount provided is very nominal. Hmm.
Read more: “I got married to myself”
If you still fancy applying for the next series (and bear in mind that you can’t have been married before, or have any children), then please send your name, phone number, age, location and email address to: email@example.com.