Sure, love is blind. But people ain’t!
Fascinated by the promise of a social experiment, we readily settled ourselves in to watch ‘Love Is Blind’, a new Netflix original dating program. Totaling 11 episodes, 30 individuals (15 men and 15 women) are initially locked in a complex for 10 days, with genders segregated into individual dorms, and throughout the 10 days the guys and girls undertake speed dating rounds in ‘pods’ separated by a thin pane of frosted glass – so they can get to know one another without being influenced by their companion’s appearance. The social experiment the producers are trying to test for, is to see if love and connection is able to surpass looks, ethnicity, physicality, stereotypes, societal prejudices, socio-economic status, education, family background, upbringing etc etc. So you can say that the producers had a pretty big task and responsibility on their hands.
And once a couple develops a connection, they can request for further dates with each other until the man feels compelled to propose to the girl ‘sight unseen’. And through the wall of frosted glass (and often through tears) she can accept or reject their proposal of marriage. And the day after (if they do say yes), they finally get to meet each other in person and possibly leave the complex immediately even before the 10 days is up?
Once out of the complex (while they are still out of contact with their family and loved ones), the couples who are now engaged are taken to Mexico for a week long post-engagement holiday. Here they start to familiarise themselves with each other’s appearance and physical attributes……… If you know what I mean. *Wink*. And on one of the evenings, all of the couples are re-united and for the first time the rest of the guys get to meet the rest of the girls (and vice versa), as everyone had blindly interacted in the pods with one another, but now they can place a face to the voice. Are there any roaming eyes, checking-out other people’s fiancées?
And after they return from their holiday, they’re made to live in the same apartment complex (seems like all of them reside in Atlanta Georgia), and as they return back to their everyday lives whilst adapting to live with a new person, they progressively start to meet each other’s parents and close friends (or break the news to besties that they’re now ENGAGED!). And here, their love and connection is put to the test, where external forces start to invade their previously insular love bubble.
And at the end of the 28 days since first setting eyes on each other (and after the usual wedding preparations and drama is out of the way), they’re at the altar in front of God, family and friends (and soon the world), with the final chance to say ‘I do’ or ‘I cannot marry you’. All very suspenseful……. Imagine if all weddings had this level of uncertainty? Def bring back some excitement back to the traditional marriage vow ceremony. Haaha.
So what did we think? Well, the initial lingering impression that I got from the first episodes when they were still blind dating each other, was that the real risk of proposing to someone ‘sight unseen’, was significantly reduced when the producers vetted and casted only ‘hot’ people. Like they weren’t just alright looking, or good looking, but they were ‘hot’! So if I knew that going into the experiment, and when I was talking and connecting with a disembodied voice, knowing that on the other side of the wall was a hottie, sure it’s a lot easier to propose to someone that you’ve never laid eyes on if there was a genuine connection there. So that eliminated some of the “wow, you’re making such a crazy decision here!”
The second thing which stuck-out for me in those early episodes was that there wasn’t more diversity in bringing together the 15 guys and 15 girls? Either in body shapes, ethnic minorities, and differently abled? That would have taken the ideals of ‘love is blind’ to the next level! But admittedly, it could be psychologically harming for an individual, to see the shock and disappointment on their face when they met for the first time. And I guess TV producers do have a responsibility to protect people from those traumatic experiences, so probs this avenue didn’t pass Netflix’s ethics board.
While overall, we found the show to be totally compelling! The real life drama which unfolded was so dramatic, it couldn’t have been scripted any better than how things naturally unfolded. And even if the show did or didn’t prove that love is blind, it did create an interesting real-life drama, which will go down as a historic piece of sociological resource, which could be required viewing for countless future sociology majors.
My final take-away is this, love is blind. But people ain’t. In the end people are driven by their minds which drives behaviour. People are guided by various experiences they’ve been through along the way – life lessons which have shaped them and heavily influences their future choices and actions. Although there is “love” and there is genuine affection, in the end people make life-defining choices with their minds, and probably less so with their hearts (well, it’s actually more emotions). And you can see for yourself, how often love wins out over better judgement. Click HERE! to start binge watching ‘Love Is Blind’.