What The Biggest Fans Don’t Know About Netflix’s Love Is Blind

What The Biggest Fans Don’t Know About Netflix’s Love Is Blind


Netflix’s Love Is Blind premiered in February
2020, serving up made-for-TV romantic vibes just in time for Valentine’s Day. The addictive first season may have ended,
but join us as we take a behind-the-scenes look at what really happened to the contestants. And beware, because there are spoilers ahead. While there are plenty of dating shows out
there, Netflix’s Love Is Blind is a reality romance series unlike any other. While Love Is Blind certainly borrows some
elements from other shows in its genre, such as Married at First Sight and 90 Day Fiancé,
the Netflix series is wholly set apart by the rooms in which the contestants first make
connections with each other, known on the series as the “pods.” According to Kinetic Content, the production
company behind the popular Netflix dating show, the pods were vital to the overall success
of the initial Love Is Blind pitch. They revealed to Refinery29, “We had sketched out what they would look
like prior to build-out. It was an integral part of our overall pitch.” By the time the Love Is Blind reunion special
aired, the two couples who actually tied the knot during the season finale, Lauren Speed
and Cameron Hamilton, and Amber Pike and Matt Barnett, were still happily married. And, considering the show filmed its initial
run between October and November 2018, keeping the marriages a secret was quite an impressive
feat. In a March 2020 interview with People, Speed
opened up about keeping her marriage a secret for nearly a year and a half and said, “[There have been] so many great moments that
we’ve just shared in the past year and a half that we haven’t been able to share with the
world.” Meanwhile, Pike told the Los Angeles Times, “On the day of [our first anniversary], since
the first year is the paper anniversary, we got Chinese food and ate it up on paper.” The first season of Netflix’s Love Is Blind
focused largely on six main couples, leaving little room for dozens of other contestants
to be featured. According to creator Chris Coelen, there were
almost 50 people in the initial cast before cuts started being made. He told E! News, “There was a certain point where we did a
whittling down of people just to focus internally on the people who were really connecting,
to allow them more time.” The number of people who got engaged in the
pods was also a lot higher than viewers were led to believe. Coelen told Entertainment Tonight, “There were eight in total, and we followed
six. It wasn’t that we didn’t want to follow them,
[…] we literally just didn’t feel like we had the bandwidth to be able to do justice
to all of the stories.” While many reality shows rely on producer-driven
conversations, Coelen confirmed that the Love Is Blind producers allowed conversation to
flow naturally in the pods. He told Variety, “There’s no producers in [the pods], there’s
nobody else. It’s just you and the other person. That’s it. They were never interrupted in terms of like
a producer saying, ‘Hey, talk about this, talk about that,’ they just did what they
wanted to do. […] If someone said, ‘I love Italian food
and I’d love to have an Italian dinner with my date,’ we would get some lasagna and arrange
that. We really wanted them to feel like it’s their
own thing.” While Kenny Barnes acted like a total champ
after Kelly Chase left him at the altar, fans took to social media to express anger on his
behalf. But according to post-show interviews, Barnes
never expected to leave Netflix’s Love Is Blind a married man. He told People, “We were adamant about we’re not going to
get married. The engagement was just to extend the experiment. And we were both committed to that.” Despite being on the same page about marriage,
Chase revealed that she and Barnes had agreed to continue their relationship offscreen. However, that all changed on the last day
of filming, as Chase told People, “It was our last filming day, and he had a
conversation with me like, ‘Hey, I think I am not emotionally available right now. I need to take some time apart from you.’ I felt very rejected, like, ‘That wasn’t
the plan. What the heck?’” Fortunately, things seemingly worked out for
the best. During the Love Is Blind reunion, Barnes revealed
that he was in a happy relationship, while Chase said she went on to date a close friend
for a while after filming wrapped. Throughout the course of Netflix’s Love Is
Blind, contestant Jessica Batten became the butt of viewer’s jokes, and the object of
much concern. Why? For the way she let her dog drink from her
wine glass, constantly talked about the ten-year age gap between herself and fiancé Mark Cuevas,
and remained stuck on her initial connection with contestant Matt Barnett. “Nice to meet you Jessica, I’m Mark.” “Nice to meet you Mark.” Fans were especially upset with Batten when
she blindsided Cuevas by leaving him at the altar. However, according to Batten, her Love Is
Blind journey would have ended very differently, and much sooner, had she gotten her way. As she told Entertainment Weekly, “I had to stay. I definitely had a conversation about leaving
and I wasn’t able to do that. My dog got sick too, and almost died during
the show, I had so much other stuff going on. […] It was really frustrating because I
kind of knew [Mark and I] weren’t going to get there. I definitely had some conversations and attempted
to leave, but I wasn’t able to.” In an interview with Buzzfeed, fan favorite
couple Lauren Speed and Cameron Hamilton dished about the pods, revealing that not every pod
date was spent trying to advance a relationship. Hamilton explained, “Sometimes you’d realize you weren’t going
to connect with someone, so you’d spend that time talking to someone about who you were
interested in.” And according to Speed, some Love Is Blind
contestants chose to use the dating pods as napping pods instead. She revealed to Buzzfeed, “There was an allotted time for dates. So say if [the allotted time] was two hours
that day, you’d have two hours with that person. Though some people, if you didn’t match with
someone, they’d be like, ‘Okay, this isn’t a romantic match.’ They’d just nap for two hours.” Thanks to the pods, Love Is Blind contestants
dated without ever seeing one another. “Who would be that crazy to get engaged through
a wall?” However, according to hosts Nick and Vanessa
Lachey, some contestants still found a way to gauge each other’s physical appearance
from within the pods. Vanessa Lachey revealed that participants
would often compare themselves to a celebrity doppelgänger, as she told People, “[The girls would tell me], ‘I said I looked
like this celebrity,” and I’d be like, ‘Oh, I could see that!'” Throughout the first season of Love Is Blind,
viewers watched as contestant Jessica Batten formed connections with two men, Mark Cuevas
and Matt Barnett. Ultimately, Batten seemingly accepted a proposal
from Cuevas after being rejected by Barnett. However, Batten never could seem to let go
of her connection with Barnett, nor could she come to terms with the large age gap between
herself and Cuevas. While Cuevas’ feelings remained consistent
throughout the process, Batten chose to leave the fan favorite fiancé at the altar. And while Cuevas certainly seemed blindsided
and genuinely heartbroken by her decision, Batten insists her former fiancé knew what
her answer was going to be. She told Entertainment Weekly, “I knew I didn’t want to marry him, we weren’t
ready for that, and we actually had multiple conversations and we were both on the same
page about that. We weren’t ready to marry each other in
that allotted amount of time that we had. We were very much on the same page about that. […] We had some off the record conversations
on multiple occasions that we weren’t ready to get married, so that wedding day was a
big surprise to me. It was pretty traumatic with how that went
down.” Carlton Morton didn’t make it to the season
finale of Netflix’s Love Is Blind, but the contestant made plenty of waves throughout
his time on the reality show. Morton decided to wait to open up about his
bisexuality to his fiancée, Diamond Jack, until they were face-to-face. However, Jack didn’t respond to Morton’s revelation
all that well and the two parted ways on an incredibly sour note. Fortunately, Morton and Jack made amends prior
to the Love Is Blind reunion special, and as a token of friendship, Morton even presented
his former fiancée with the engagement ring he’d infamously tossed in the swimming pool. While Morton and Jack’s big blowup was certainly
one of the most dramatic moments on Love Is Blind, it wasn’t Morton’s first brush with
reality TV theatrics. Morton previously appeared on The Real Housewives
of Atlanta. And, much like his argument with Jack, Morton
had an explosive fight with Kenya Moore during a 2012 episode, ultimately resulting in him
being escorted from the building. Talk about drama! Amber Pike and Matt Barnett were one of the
more consistent couples throughout the first season of Love Is Blind, ultimately tying
the knot in front of their family and friends, and returning for the reunion special as a
married couple. However, during the finale, Pike revealed
that she hadn’t spoken to Barnett since he admitted to having cold feet the night prior
to their wedding, which left Pike worrying he’d reject her at the altar. Pike told the Los Angeles Times, “I thought he was going to be the runaway
bride.” Fortunately, the nervous bride-to-be was able
to calm her nerves before walking down the aisle thanks to the help of her mother. As Pike explained to the Los Angeles Times, “My mom went to talk to him. And she comes right back up just a few minutes
later and goes, ‘Oh, you’re fine. He’s fine. You’re going to get married today and don’t
even worry about it. He loves you.'” While contestants on ABC’s The Bachelor get
to know each other in small doses while jetting off to exotic locales across the globe, contestants
on Netflix’s Love Is Blind are thrown into reality after a short getaway to Mexico, forced
to share a living space right away, navigate real-world scenarios, and have tough conversations
about the future. One of the most memorable moments from the
show came courtesy of Amber Pike and Matt Barnett, whose conversation regarding finances
quickly took a turn when Pike revealed she had about $20,000 worth of student loan debt
that she hadn’t been paying. Pike also admitted to having an expensive
makeup habit, which led to Barnett appearing taken aback by the revelation. “Oh my god, that is burned in my memory forever.” For a moment, it seemed as though Pike’s money
problems would prove to be a dealbreaker for Barnett. However, as the couple revealed to Entertainment
Weekly, Pike isn’t the only one with a less-than-perfect financial situation. Barnett told the publication, “When I was on the show, I think I had almost
$30,000 in student debt.” Barnett’s wife confirmed, “He had a lot more student debt than I did!” Damian Powers became one-half of one of Love
Is Blind’s ill-fated couples when he proposed to, and also accepted a proposal from, Giannina
“Gigi” Milady Gibelli. However, despite their brutal onscreen break-up,
Powers and Gibelli revealed on the Love Is Blind reunion special that they’d since gotten
back together and have been enjoying dating each other away from the pods and cameras. While they may have a broken engagement under
their belts, these two seemingly found some sort of happy ending on Love Is Blind, and
it’s all thanks to a sneaky casting producer. When asked by Ellen DeGeneres on her show
in March 2020 how he ended up on the Netflix series, Powers revealed that he was scouted
on Tinder, and said, “[I] started chatting with this girl, [we]
hit it off, and she’s like, ‘Add me on Instagram. […] [We had a] pretty good connection and
then she’s like, ‘I’m a casting producer, and I’m a catfish.’ So now, I’m here.” Now, that’s a pretty great story to tell the
grandkids, after showing them Season 1 of Love Is Blind, that is. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more List videos about your favorite
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