Love Is Blind is supposedly based on the idea that love is, well, blind. The entire premise of the dating show is that contestants meet and fall in love without ever seeing each other. It’s only once they decide to get engaged that they can meet face-to-face. You’d think it would be an opportunity for reality TV to embrace body diversity, but people who don’t fit the traditional mold (i.e., skinny, fit), typically haven’t ended up getting any significant airtime on either of Love Is Blind’s two seasons. So what gives? According to co-host Vanessa Lachey, it’s … catfishing? I’ll let her explain.
Speaking about why contestants who don’t fit the typical Hollywood standards of beauty might not make it very far on the show, Lachey told Insider, “Their whole life they’ve been so insecure about being themselves because of this crazy swipe generation that we are in and this catfishing world that we’re in, that they’re so afraid to be themselves.” It’s unclear who, exactly, she thinks is doing the catfishing and/or swiping here, but okay. Lachey added that she thinks contestants who might add body diversity to the show don’t make it past the “pods” stage (a.k.a. the blind-dating stage) to engagements because they’re “insecure,” which can make the process more difficult. “I wonder if they truly don’t have enough time in those two weeks to find themselves, A, and then be themselves to then find that spouse,” she said.
Lachey, who hosts the show with her husband, Nick Lachey, was adamant that the casting department gives everyone a “fair shot.” Creator and executive producer Chris Coelen made the same claim in an interview with the Los Angeles Times earlier this year. “We had every kind of person that we could find come into this environment, and everybody had an equal opportunity,” he said. Coelen, like Lachey, seemed to think the issue was really one of confidence, noting, “When you go into an environment where you do strip away all of the trappings of the material world, and you’re in there, there’s some people that just present confidently or flirtatiously or whatever,” he said.
There’s a lot to unpack here. So, what they’re saying is that people who aren’t a size 8 or below are insecure, don’t know how to flirt, and are used to catfishing/being catfished? I’m not sure who they’ve been hanging out with, but they might want to expand their circle of friends, or, at the very least, look up “unconscious bias.” That might help.