MAFS Season 1’s OG Jamie Otis hosted a very special MAFS Hall of Fame episode. The episode spanned 11 MAFS seasons, awarding couples with all kinds of titles, with categories that spanned everything from “Favorite Fairytale” to “Least Likely to Succeed”, and everything in between. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights(and my personal favorites) from the episode.
Let’s start with the show’s biggest and baddest…
1. Top 5 Biggest Brawlers
What would MAFS be without the fights? There have been some real knock-down drag-outs over the show’s history and it was definitely entertaining to take a walk down Lovers Quarrel Lane.
This list spanned everyone from Taylor and Brandon from the Season’s Washington, DC edition, to everyone’s favorite fighters, Beth Bice and Jamie Thompson of the Charlotte Season. Beth and Jamie walked away with the number one spot for the title.
Surprisingly Brandon and Taylor did not take the number one spot in this category, probably because the worst of this couple’s fights… happened once the cameras stopped rolling. Although the two called it quits on Decision Day, there was an attempt at reconciliation, an attempt that ended in legal action. I think it’s safe to say any marriage that ends in court dates, as opposed to romantic dates, might need to just rest in peace in divorce court.
Fortunately for those involved, none of those incidents were captured during the show, so I think what clinched it for Beth and Jamie to take away the title was the infamous table flip of Season 9. Jamie and Beth’s explosive relationship was both public and well documented. The couple seemed to have no trouble fighting in front of other couples or in front of the camera, and during one of their more heated arguments, Beth actually flipped the couple’s coffee table. The action caused fans and experts alike to have some serious doubts about the couple’s future.
But somehow against the odds, the couple was able to work it out, and on Couples Cam, the couple is shown to still be together and apparently happier than ever. It is even more surprising as most of the other couples that made the list…did not make it past Decision Day.
2. Most Instant Chemistry
Not all of MAFS is brawls and bad fights, there is also a whole lot of lovemaking, both inside and outside of the bedroom. This category took a look at what couples had(at least initially) the spiciest of romances.
But while passion can be an important component of marriage it is important to remember: while the fire of passion can give you steamy sex life, it can also burn your marriage to the ground, and unfortunately, the majority of this list flamed out of their marriages before the finale.
One excellent example of this would be the infamous Taylor and Brandon of Season 10 who also featured the Biggest Brawlers category. This couple was a prime example of how passion in one area can be good for a marriage, and too much fire in another can be a deal-breaker. The couple certainly started off hot and heavy but the two would have been better off, leaving their fiery ways in the bedroom, the intensity of their fights left fans and experts alike, very concerned and ultimately ended things for the couple.
Another couple that made the list was Season 8’s Matt and Amber. At their wedding, Amber had a hard time keeping her hands(and lips) off her new husband, Matt. But while the couple started off with fireworks, they definitely ended with a forest fire.
Matt’s late nights and alleged infidelities with other women during the show made the marriage more of a battleground than a safe harbor for his then-wife Amber, who struggled with abandonment issues from her childhood. Finally, the couple did end up calling it quits on Decision Day, leaving the couple’s once steamy romance, to smolder.
The winner of this category, Season 3’s Vanessa Nelson and Tres Russell, also, unfortunately, did not stay together for the long term, but they certainly had a fiery romance, while it lasted.
3. Least Likely to Succeed
Where there are winners, there are also losers, and unfortunately, not everyone in MAFS walks away with a successful marriage. The Least Likely to Succeed category included some of the more disastrous couples throughout the history of the show.
From couples like Season 4’s Heather and Derek, who barely made it past the honeymoon, to Season 8’s Kate and Luke, whose hard-to-watch marriage we all wished hadn’t made it past the honeymoon, there was some stiff competition for this title.
Kate and Luke started off as a fan favorite. Between Kate’s sweet smile and calm demeanor, to Luke’s seeming excitement about his nuptials, it looked like smooth sailing for this couple. Sure, he had seemed a little shy at their wedding, not wanting to kiss Kate during the ceremony, but kissing a stranger on camera in front of all your friends and family might make anyone a little hesitant.
But it quickly became apparent on their honeymoon, when they began to seriously lag behind the other couples in their intimacy, something more might be amiss.
That belief was clinched when after the couple’s first kiss, Luke reported feeling “repulsed” and “dead inside.” Ouch. No coming back from that one I’m afraid. While the couple did try to shore up their torn marriage, it did not take long to realize they were just not going to make it.
While Kate and Luke were definitely the couple to beat in this category, ultimately Heather and Derek of Season 4, walked away with the crown. Heather and Derek barely made it out of their honeymoon in one piece, let alone a happy marriage.
Between their constant bickering, Heather’s dislike of Derek’s daily smoking habit, and just a general lack of connection or intimacy between the two, it was no wonder the couple did not make it through Decision Day.
5. Double Agents
Arrest record’s, liars, and cheaters…oh my! They say you never truly know someone until you live with them, well I think it’s safe to say MAFS’s adage would be closer to…you never really know someone until you marry them at first sight on national TV then immediately live with them for 8 weeks.
Because these are the individuals whose stories went from fairy tale to mystery series in the blink of an eye or the flash of a camera. From the liars to the cheaters, to the just…bizarre. This category covered it all.
Once again Luke from Season 8 made an appearance in the awards, this time as a contender for the Double Agent category. From claiming he wanted a connection “much deeper than the physical” to ultimately ending it over lack of physical attraction to Kate, his level of deception from day one was apparent.
Fans spent the season on the edge of their seats while Luke continued to both sabotage the marriage and simultaneously blame Kate for its downfall. From blaming their lack of intimacy on her alleged “drinking problem” to refusing to take responsibility for the hurtful things he said, Luke certainly showed fans a side of himself and not a very appealing one.
But truly there’s no competing with the winner in this category. Matt Gwynne from Charlotte, what can we say other than… liar liar pants on fire. That statement is about the emotional equivalent to Matt’s behavior throughout the season…childish.
From lying to the experts to disappearing for days(and nights) on end, to his ultimate act of betrayal of actively pursuing and dating other women while married to his then-wife, Amber, Matt sure had fans and experts alike fooled.
Matt initially won fans over with his promises to Amber of ongoing dedication and commitment, and while he was able to say all the right things, he definitely did all the wrong things.
Amber said during the show that it “felt like he was living a double life” and between the cameras and sweet sentiments by day and the disappearing act by night, it certainly seemed that way. But thankfully the couple finally put the marriage out of its misery on Decision Day, and Amber is reportedly doing well in her new life, despite Matt’s best attempts at ruining it.
MAFS has and continues to be one wild ride. There is no telling what surprises and awards, the new season will hold.
Married at First Sight returns on Wednesday, July 21 at 8/7c on Lifetime.