Married At First Sight UK gets exclusive new test for couples 'Gets people's backs up' – Express
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Married At First Sight UK is back on E4 from Monday with a whole host of new singles hoping to find love. The bumper season is made up of 30 episodes this year, meaning there is scope for some new tests. Experts Charlene Douglas, Paul Brunson and Mel Schilling spoke to Express.co.uk about what to expect.
The quirky dating series returns for another year and fans are excited for the drama to start.
Each individual will be matched by the panel of experts and they will then meet their chosen soulmates for the first time on their wedding day, before enjoying a honeymoon together.
The usual dinner parties and commitment ceremonies will feature in abundance, but this year something different is on the cards.
For the first time in the show’s history, the couples will be put to the test in Love and Hate week.
READ MORE: Shetland fans ‘work out’ Jimmy Perez replacementThis challenge is unique to the UK version of the show, and Mel was excited to see what happens.
She said: “Love and Hate week, this is the first time we have done this globally so this is unique to the UK, which is great to have an element unique to this particular group.
“Really the sentiment behind it is putting a mechanism in place to make it easier for couples to give feedback.
“It can be hard, particularly in those early stages of the relationship, to say ‘It really annoys me when you do this’.
“So we are taking the ick-factor out of that conversation and putting a process in place where they have to say the things they hate as well as the things they love about each other.“So it becomes a little bit more fair, a little bit more equitable and kind of normalises that idea of sharing things that you might not be particularly happy with.”
Charlene said it was not an easy challenge for the couples as hearing negative feedback can get their backs up.
She explained: “It can be really difficult for people to hear feedback from others about areas in their personality that they maybe need to change.
“I think what we notice is as soon as someone notices they are going through an experience of what they perceive as negative feedback, you start to see their back get up a little bit.
“You start to see their whole body language change and, you know, it’s all part of a relationship to accept feedback and to respond in a positive way.”
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Paul said there could be tension this year as the individuals have come with some very specific criteria.
He said: “There are a few in this group who have even more interesting criteria (than last year).
“What is really interesting is that the trend for many people is to become more intricate in what they want.
“What Covid taught us and the lockdown is that we can be happy by ourselves but for someone to enter our lives, they really have to fit a specific type.
“I think the challenge with that is when you have a specific type, you end up being less happy when you find someone.
“So I think that’s the importance of having the three of us, is being able to say you know what you think you want, but let us help you to understand what you need in your life.”
This time around the couples will also be treated to a MAFS Retreat, where they will be sent on a staycation as a big group.
Their connection as one group will be put to the test as well as the bonds between individual couples.
Married At First Sight UK airs on Monday on E4 at 9pm.
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