Alaskan Bush People Season 9 premiered last night — with the notable absence of Matt Brown.
The first episode teased what was to come on the new season, including the lead-up to the birth of Noah Brown and wife Rhain Alisha’s new baby son Elijah, who was born last week.
But eagle-eyed viewers will have noticed Billy and Ami Brown’s eldest son Matt was not featured at all during the episode, and was also not part of the group photo which aired at the start of the episode.
Instead the photo only showed Bam Bam, Rainy, Birdy, Ami, Billy, Bear, Gabe and Noah. So where was Matt?
Fans familiar with the show will know that Matt entered rehab for alcohol abuse last year, the second time he has done so. He spent six months in treatment as both an inpatient and an outpatient, before completing his stint in January.
He received treatment in California, apart from the rest of the Browns, and is still living there so he can continue to attend support sessions. As a result, he was unable to film Season 9 of Alaskan Bush People with the rest of his family.
Dad Billy told People: “It was his decision to drop everything and go fix what he hadn’t fixed. He’s fighting a hard road. He has for a long time. We just try to let him know that family’s here no matter what.”
Mom Ami added: “We miss him a lot, but I don’t even want him to come back until he finishes this. We just hope he finds that happiness inside him again.”
Matt previously entered rehab for alcohol abuse back in 2016, after realizing he was “spiraling” into a world revolving around drink.
The new season of Alaskan Bush People sees the Browns settling in on their new homestead in Washington State. The premiere saw Noah’s wife Rhain moving to Washington to join the family, after the couple got married last year.
It also saw Noah’s sister Birdy reveal how she and Rhain have “never really gotten along”.
Alaskan Bush People airs Sundays at 9/8c on Discovery.