Opinion

The 90 Day Fiance franchise needs less drama and more authentic couples

Mary DeNuccio cries on 90 Day Fiance: The Other Way
Mary is tired of all the drama. Pic credit: TLC

If we’re being honest, we’re surprised the 90 Day Fiance franchise remains a massive success story after a decade on the air.

Initially starting with four couples, the first season had the perfect mix of authentic couples and the storylines to match.

Back then, it was more of an experiment to showcase the K1 visa process, highlighting the highs and lows of couples going through it at the time.

Nowadays, the franchise has countless spinoffs as TLC is devoted to airing at least four hours of new 90 Day Fiance content a week.

It’s a lot.

Sadly, the 90 Day universe has never really been able to recapture the authentic nature of those initial episodes for one big reason.

Producers are casting the most toxic couples

It’s a real shame because it’s no longer the show we watched all those years ago, as the network seems more concerned with churning out drama-filled spinoffs instead of crafting storylines grounded in reality.

There’s a high probability that producers are nixing candidates from the process based on the lack of conflict in their relationships, and that’s not the way it should be.

People like Big Ed Brown and Angela Deem have single-handedly turned the entire franchise into something so toxic that we’re surprised it still has any viewers.

That’s not to say they’re the only toxic villains on the show, but they are the two that TLC keeps bringing back every. It’s almost like that behavior is getting rewarded.

On-screen, we watch them gaslight whoever is unfortunate enough to be in a relationship with them.

Big Ed Brown and Angela Deem are some of the biggest villains on TV

The worst part from Ed recently is how he allowed Deem to get up in his then-fiance Liz Woods’s face and dared to say she deserved it in the aftermath on 90 Day: The Last Resort.

We hope the recent rumors are accurate and Liz has moved on with someone else because it was something else.

More recent toxic couples like Brandan & Mary DeNuccio and Gino Palazzolo & Jasmine Pineda exist.

It would be far more interesting at this stage if the show went back to basics and brought on more couples like Alan and Kirlyam Cox, who have been married for a decade now. Yes, there were some issues early in their relationship, but nothing quite like some newer couples.

Toxic couples should be far away from TV screens

Checking back in with the less toxic couples isn’t a bad thing. It would probably go down better than participants hamming up their own drama for the cameras to score a comeback the following season or on another spinoff.

The hope then would be that the executives would introduce a rule to keep most couples from appearing in more than one or two seasons.

Understandably, some couples are asked back if their love story isn’t quite complete, but people like Elizabeth Potthast & Andrei Castravet have been on four consecutive seasons of 90 Day Fiance: Happily Ever After? and don’t offer anything beyond forced storylines and family drama with Elizabeth’s siblings.

The sad part of all this is that TLC probably gives these returning couples more money per episode than a freshman couple, so there’s an incentive to cause problems on camera because it gives the illusion that they have more story to tell.

Given the limited budget for the series, the franchise will probably need to lose a lot of viewers and get some harsh criticism before action is taken.

We must also consider that the show is available worldwide on Discovery+, so the U.S. numbers aren’t the only factor.

With how toxic the franchise is becoming, there’s a high chance that viewers will tire of 90 Day Fiance sooner rather than later.

90 Day Fiance airs Sundays at 8/7c on TLC.

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John Kenneth Lyon
John Kenneth Lyon
27 days ago

Yes,I am already tired of the show! I recently didn’t watch for a couple months and recently started again and see how stupid and fake it has become!