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Married at First Sight: Is the UK version of the show scripted?

We've done some investigating and here's the truth…

mafs uk scripted
Eve Crosbie
Eve CrosbieTV & Film Writer
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Married at First Sight is the dating show with a twist. After meeting for the very first time at the altar, couples take part in a life-changing experiment to see if they're lucky in love or if the marriage is DOA.

MORE: How long is Married at First Sight UK on for? 

The UK version of the hit reality show made its comeback earlier this month and saw experts Mel Schilling, Paul C Brunson and Charlene Douglas help 16 hopeful single people find their perfect match. With gorgeous weddings, explosive arguments and drama in abundance – it's no wonder the show is hugely popular. But it has also left some viewers questioning whether the show is scripted. We've done some investigating and here's the truth…

WATCH: Are you enjoying the new season of MAFS UK? 

Like the Australian, American and other international iterations, Married At First Sight UK is billed as an "unscripted reality series", meaning that those appearing on the show do not follow a script.

MORE: Married at First Sight UK filming secrets that will change the way you watch the show

MORE: Which MAFS UK contestants have the secret affair? Here's what fans are saying

However, like other reality shows such as Made in Chelsea, The Only Way is Essex and Love Island, it's believed that MAFS could be categorised as a structured reality show. This means that the real people appearing on the show can find themselves placed in particular scenarios which are likely to invoke certain reactions and paths of conversation.

MAFS UK s7© Photo: Channel 4

Married at First Sight is not scripted, but is structured reality show

Meanwhile, some contestants on the Aus version of the show have spoken out about how much involvement the producers have had on the show. Following his season of MAFS Australia, which aired in the UK earlier this year, contestant Sam Ball claimed that newlyweds are given lines and prompts through earpieces.

mafs uk ep 2© Photo: Channel 4

The marriages on the show are not legally binding

"[The producers] tell you what to say, they stand there and ask you questions until you give them the answer they want," he said, while his co-stars Dean Wells, Davina Rankin and Nasser Sultan have all made similar accusations.

MORE: Inside Married at First Sight UK's spectacular wedding venues – including £20k royal residence

It's also worth noting that the marriages shown to viewers are not legally binding as there is no marriage licence, so there is some element of fakeness to the show.

As the synopsis on the Channel 4 website reads: "Following the Australian format, rather than legal marriages, the couples will make a lifelong commitment to one another at a glamorous ceremony, overseen by a wedding celebrant, that includes guests, bridal gowns, dancing, speeches and cake."

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