20 underrated reality show gems you should be watching

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Married at First Sight

The premise: Two people agree to go on a reality show in which they are matched with a stranger and must get married upon their first meeting. Before the two are ever hitched, they undergo lots of interviews and testing with professionals like marriage counselors, behavior experts, and psychologists, and they pair people up based on the findings from the extensive screenings.

After a few weeks of being together, and living together, the couple has to decide whether or not they want to stay married. During this “probation” period, they are visited by the very experts that set them up, as a way to pep talk them into staying in the game (or getting out, as many do).

Why you’ll like it: This show really pushes the boundaries of what audiences will accept from sane, rational people. The whole idea that two perfect strangers would meet for the first time and get married on TV is completely bonkers. But once you meet the couples, it turns out they aren’t really wackos after all.

Just like with many relationship-driven reality shows, the people genuinely seem like they want to connect with the other person, and their frustrations often mirror real-life relationships. So  much of their early problems are common newlywed problems. The show isn’t really that bizarre, once you can get over the fact they were strangers when they got married.

Strangely enough, a lot of the couples from the show are still together. It stands to reason there people would flee the minute they are contractually able, but a surprising number decide to hang around and stick it out. It’s kind of sweet.

How to watch: Seasons 1-4 are available on Hulu, and new episodes air on Lifetime Tuesdays at 9.