It’s time for husband-and-wife life! FYI’s wildly popular social experiment Married at First Sight has returned for its fourth season, this time helping six Miami singles find compatible partners with the guidance of three highly-trained experts.
As fans have learned over the past three seasons, it takes more than similar interests to successfully match two seemingly well-suited individuals. Here, The Knot recaps the July 26 premiere, and challenges readers with an important question: Will this season’s marriages last?
Meet the Experts
Dr. Pepper Schwartz: Married at First Sight‘s sociologist is a self-defined “detective at heart.” She will be joined this season by two expert newcomers.
Rachel DeAlto: The life coach and sex/relationship expert wants the singles to find happiness in life and in marriage.
Pastor Calvin Roberson: The marriage counselor will also be joining the series, and there’s no doubt that the newlywed pairs will be seeking his advice.
Meet the Singles
Sonia Granados, 33, is a social worker who describes herself as “a little quirky” and “caring.” She is well-aware of the realities of divorce. Her parents split after more than 20 years of marriage.
Nick Pendergrast, 32, will be matched with Sonia. He’s a vacation rental manager who loves his job. His aunt and uncle were recently in a car accident, and his aunt passed away. The tragedy put life into perspective for Nick. He’s ready to meet the love of his life.
Sonia and Nick were chosen to be matched on Married at First Sight because of their shared values. They also have “similar energy.”
Heather Seidel, 32, is a flight attendant with a serious fear of rejection. Her parents have been married for 35 years, and she is looking for a similar relationship.
Derek Schwartz, 35, will be matched with Heather. He’s an account executive who likes to have fun. After being in the military, he’s ready to settle down. He wants his entire marriage to be “like the honeymoon phase.” His parents divorced when Derek was a baby, and he grew up without a father figure.
Heather and Derek are being matched because they are both “attractive and intelligent, have similar thinking patterns, and good temperament.” They are both “quieter” people, and the experts believe they’ll complement each other well.
Lillian Vilchez, 24, is a realtor who describes herself as “very affectionate.” She admired her parents’ marriage until her father left her mother after Lillian left the nest. Since her parents’ separation, her father has “slowly disappeared” from her life.
Tom Wilson, 28, will be matched with Lillian. He is a yacht interior specialist who lives in a tour bus in an RV park about five minutes from the beach, where he loves to surf. Tom explains that he’s done with the dating and club scene and he’s ready for married life.
Lillian and Tom were paired because they are both entrepreneurs.
The Chosen Ones
The experts reveal that they have found a match for each of the six chosen singles. After the initial shock wears off, the Season 4 stars tell their friends and families.
Although the relatives are understandably surprised, it’s obvious that each of the singles have a strong support system. Nick’s mom, however, is skeptical and outspoken about her son’s upcoming marriage.
“What if I don’t like her?” She asks Nick after his announcement. “Then what?” Nick may be asking himself the same question.
The Finishing Touches
The Married at First Sight singles have exactly two weeks to prepare for their upcoming nuptials. The men are going ring and tuxedo shopping while the ladies choose their wedding dresses.
Heather’s mom is exceptionally sweet during the wedding dress shopping experience. She wants to share every special moment with her daughter.
Lillian has a no pearls policy when it comes to wedding gown shopping. Her family believes it’s a bad omen to incorporate pearls on a bride’s wedding day.
Last Night as Singles
It’s the night before their weddings, and the Married at First Sight singles are partying with their friends. Derek’s buddies invite strippers, but Derek’s not ashamed. “We kept it classy,” he says. “It’s rated PG for sure.”
Sonia wants to do something memorable for her last night of singlehood. She joins her friends at a drag queen show – where she’s brought on-stage. Her mom even travels from Costa Rica to join in the pre-wedding festivities.
The Day Has Arrived!
It’s the day of the weddings, and the Married at First Sight singles are nervous and excited. Lillian’s brother-in-law will be walking her down the aisle, as she’s had no communication with her father.
Each of the soon-to-be married singles send a gift to their husband or wife-to-be. Lillian gifts Tom with a wooden box and a thoughtful note while Sonia sends Nick a bottle of scotch.
Lillian is devastated when she realizes Tom sent her a pearl necklace. Her family is adamant that she doesn’t wear the pearls, as they’re bad luck on her wedding day. But Lillian fears that Tom will think she didn’t appreciate the gesture.
Derek is going with the flow pre-wedding. He’s happy and ready to meet his bride. But Heather is frustrated and having second thoughts. “I just don’t feel like me,” she tells her mom.
Lillian is excited to walk down the aisle at her outdoor wedding, but soon it starts storming. A light rain turns into a torrential downpour, leaving Lillian wondering if her bad luck may be a sign that she’s making a mistake.
On the next episode, the couples meet at the altar of their weddings and introduce themselves before saying their vows. Derek is instantly attracted to Heather, but will his new bride share his enthusiasm? Lillian’s dress is soaked as she walks down the aisle to meet Tom.
Married at First Sight airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on FYI.