And then there were two. The final episode of “Love Is Blind” dropped on Friday, showing all five weddings and revealing that only two couples said “I do.” Danielle Ruhl and Nick Thompson tied the knot during an outside, very hot wedding that left viewers on the edge of their seats during the penultimate episode, while the finale wrapped with Iyanna McNeely and Jarrette Jones as a married couple.
Unfortunately, those were the only two couples that chose to actually go through with their weddings. Deepti Vempati said no, telling Shake Chatterjee that she deserved someone who wanted her 100%, leaving him at the altar. Natalie Lee shocked Shayne Jansen by saying that while he’s her best friend, she couldn’t get past their fight the night before. Lastly, Sal Perez — full of emotion — told Mallory Zapata that he couldn’t marry her, a decision he made at the very last minute.
“The idea is that if you can fall in love with someone, if you find someone to fall in love with, is your love strong enough that it survives the test of the real material world? That test goes all the way up to the wedding day,” creator Chris Coelen tells Variety. “I went and said hello to people before they got up to the altar. More people than not, say, ‘I’m gonna know when I get up there.’ They have really taken it to heart, and really taken it seriously.”
Coelen was also shocked by what happened at the weddings, starting with Lee and Jansen, who had a strong connection throughout the entire season. During the finale, they revealed they’d gotten in a nasty fight the night before — one the cameras didn’t capture. After she left him at the altar, she shared that he had said he hated her and that she was the worst thing that had ever happened to him. She was unable to move on from that.
“I think he was worked up and upset after the bachelor party. Whatever mood he was in after his experience at Wrigley Field, I think he took that with him back home,” says Coelen. “They’re supposed to separate after the bachelor and bachelorette parties and and come together on their wedding day. My understanding is that, for whatever reason, they got together, there was a blow up and it was bad.”
While Jansen followed Lee outside after she said no, Chatterjee did not follow Vempati when she decided she did not want to marry him. Instead, he told his friends he still wanted to party and told the cameras he was excited to go to eat at Nobu.
“My impression is that, for him: This is a party we’ve got all our people here together. I don’t want to be embarrassed. I’m just gonna kind of play it off, and be Mr. Cool. You can see that that’s not actually how he feels,” says Coelen. “I think what was really fascinating to me, if I’m being completely honest, is that there’s such a depth of feeling between the couples even if they don’t ultimately work out, and there’s heartbreak. It was interesting to me that actually Shake stayed with his friends and didn’t go off and see what was up with Deep. He’s in Shake’s world.”
He recalls telling Chatterjee that he’d never seen anyone “change and evolve” as quickly as he did inside the pods. However, that seemingly changed after he took his relationship with Vempati outside of the pods: “He got into the real world and that part of him started to unravel a little bit, and he started going back to being Shake.”
Meanwhile, Perez and Zapata’s split was about as cordial as one could imagine, with him crying and telling her how much respect he has for her — but that he couldn’t get married. She understood, and they spoke kindly to one another afterward.
“Mallory has talked about this post-experiment, the idea that maybe she was more protective and wasn’t as open — including extending out to her family — as she wished that she was and I think that bit her and I think she regrets it,” says Coelen.
As for the couples who got their happily ever after, the most dramatic factor was the weather, as Thompson was literally soaked in sweat during his vows. Of course, there’s only so much production can control — and weather isn’t one of those elements.
“They wanted an outdoor wedding. We try to have the couples have as much say in it as possible. We try to facilitate that within reason,” says Coelen. “That’s what Nick and Danielle wanted.”
The “Love Is Blind” reunion drops on Netflix Friday, March 4.