Desperation. That is the one word to describe the second season of the popular Netflix reality dating show, Love is Blind. This season gave insight into the desperate dating scene that Covid-19 left in its wake.
The premise of Love is Blind is that participants are meant to get to know one another and get engaged without ever laying eyes on their potential partners. The process is often referred to as a ‘social experiment’ to give it a sense of genuineness – and not simply another Netflix cash grab – but ultimately this fails, and Love is Blind falls into the format of all other dating shows.
Conversations take place in what the show refers to as ‘pods’ with a wall between the participants as they talk about hard childhoods, insecurities and of course love. Within a few weeks they are expected to weed through the pack and find their match and then get engaged. After the engagement, they go on an all-inclusive holiday to Mexico, Cancun, and within two weeks they need to make the life-altering decision to either get married or walk away from the relationship.
Although Netflix is still new to the reality TV dating scene, the endearing love story of season one between Cameron and Lauren gripped viewers along with the customary drama of shows of this nature. Where season one had a balance of sweet, soaring, and saccharine moments, season two falls short, as this time drama takes the front seat.
Instead, the sticky feel of desperation is on full display this season.
This season was shot right after Covid-19 restrictions eased and many people had endured lockdown after lockdown. So, it makes sense that many participants were eager to find love, but it seemed this eagerness had no limits.
Love is being able to carry someone at a festival
When fans meet Indian American Abhishek, he makes it clear that he is attracted to blonde, skinny, white girls and has never dated an Indian woman. He also states that he wants to be with a woman he can carry on his shoulders.
Abhishek tells fellow Indian American Deepti this and she also expresses that she too has never been with an Indian man. But she is open to giving it a try with him. It is clear he does not understand the purpose of the show as he asks Deepti his misogynistic and superficial question: “Would I be able to carry you on my shoulders at a festival?”
Deepti responded and said: “If you are up to the challenge.”
Then Abhishek said: “But would I have trouble carrying you.”
This exchange triggers Deepti not only because of how deeply offensive it is, but because she used to be overweight and has struggled with self-love and acceptance for a long time.
It is obvious that Abhishek does not understand the purpose of the show because you are meant to choose a potential partner not because of how they look or their weight, which is what Abhishek was trying to gauge by asking that question, but how well you connect and if your values align.
Deepti was earnest in her pursuit of love as she asked questions about his hopes, dreams and future plans, yet the only questions Abhishek was able to form were ones that focused on the physical aspect and nothing else.
While Deepti was looking for an authentic connection it seemed Abhishek was looking for a shiny trophy wife to adhere to the beauty standards he had in his head.
You would think during their time in the pods Deepti would have seen exactly the kind of person Abhishek is but her boat still wanted to paddle into Abhishek’s harbour and if her vessel had a name, it would have been HMS Desperado.
They both had no prospects and seemed as though they were forcing the wrong jigsaw puzzle pieces together.
It was as though they were clinging onto the only person who showed any vague interest in them, and they weren’t the only couple who did this.
Another couple who fell into the trap of clinging onto the only other person left were Kyle and Shaina.
These two had no business getting engaged. Shaina was adamant about wanting a Christian husband but ended up saying yes to Kyle, an atheist.
Despite their differing religious beliefs, nothing about their conversations warranted Kyle getting down on one knee and proposing to Shaina with his mother’s engagement ring.
Love is being a second option after their first choice rejected them
Jarrett, Iyana, Mallory, and Sal found themselves in a reality TV rendition of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer’s Night Dream as everyone wanted someone who did not want them.
Jarrett had a connection with both Mallory and Iyanna. When audiences saw him share with Iyanna that he was stabbed by a close friend and Iyanna opened up to Jarrett about being sexually assaulted, it seemed as though they would get engaged. But this wasn’t the case.
Instead, Garrett told Mallory he saw a future with her, but she turned him down in favour of her connection with suave guitar playing musician Sal.
As Shakespeare said: “The course of true love never did run smooth.”
Jarrett comes clean to Iyanna who tearfully said: “I deserve someone who feels certain about me.”
Iyanna is right. However, any glimmer of hope that could have possibly made the scene a moment for viewers at home to learn from and never accept being a second option was quickly shut down when Iyanna decided to accept his proposal.
Any sane woman would have balked at the prospect of being a consolation prize.
If you are looking for a reality show to pass the time, watch some drama from the comfort of your house and guffaw at people’s horrible relationship choices then hop on to Love is Blind season 2. While there will not be many fuzzy moments, the absolute carnage and idiocrasy makes up for it.
Love is Blind season 2 is now on Netflix.