8 Signs The Experts Are Failing Miserably At Their Job


  • The Married at First Sight season 17 experts have been mismatching couples and not effectively counseling them.
  • The failure rate of the couples on season 17 is high, indicating that the experts have been matching incompatible people.
  • The experts have not been stepping in enough and waiting too long to intervene, resulting in couples derailing and losing trust.

The Married at First Sight season 17 experts are not fulfilling what is expected of them in terms of matching and counseling the couples on the show. Dr. Pepper Schwartz, Pastor Calvin “Cal” Roberson, and Dr. Pia Holec are the panel of experts who have been tasked with pairing the couples and helping them grow and succeed in their new marriages. Season 17 is taking place in Denver, and the experts were meant to select five couples to participate. Currently, some of the couples are broken up, but the season started with Michael and a mystery bride, Lauren and Orion, Cameron and Clare, Emily and Brennan, and Becca and Austin.

Dr. Pia has been an expert since season 15, so this is her third season. Dr. Pepper and Pastor Cal have been experts since the beginning of the show in 2014, and have been there through all seventeen seasons. Married at First Sight season 17 is halfway through, and the couples have faced innumerable challenges. Mistrust, lack of attraction, cultural and religious barriers, and poor communication have been the major red flags present in the couples’ connections. Some have not been able to overcome their differences, even with the help of the experts, which is concerning.


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8 The Experts Mismatched Michael

They Fumbled Michael’s First Match

Michael Shiakallis is an eccentric but lovable and mature cast member that the experts were sure they could match. His was the first wedding the take place, with Michael standing at the altar hopeful and ready to meet his bride. Unfortunately, when his bride met him on their wedding day, she declared that she was not ready to marry a stranger, which devastated Michael. The experts clearly mismatched Michael with someone unprepared and who was the cause of a lot of personal pain for Michael. The experts have since rematched Michael with Chloe Brown, and the pair have yet to walk down the aisle on Married at First Sight season 17.

7 The Experts Did Not Screen Brennan Enough

Brennan Is Proving To Be An Unwilling Person

Brennan was another questionable casting choice made by the experts. Through the weeks of the experiment, he has proven that he is emotionally unavailable and closed off to the idea of therapy and guidance, although it’s clear he needs it. The experts should have screened Brennan’s negative personality traits better and realized that there was a lot of potential for him to hurt Emily, who has never been in a relationship. Brennan’s bad attitude and selfishness should have been traits that the experts picked up on before approving him to be matched.

6 The Season 17 Failure Rate Is High

The Experts Have Been Matching Incompatible People

the experts with a MAFS season 17 cast background

Married at First Sight season 17 has already seen a historically lower failure rate among the couples, and the experts are to blame for that. Not only did they mismatch Michael originally, leading to their first failure, but two other couples have also called it quits. Orion asked for a divorce from Lauren upon returning from their honeymoon, and Cameron and Clare separated on their one-month anniversary after discovering they had fundamental differences in religion and raising kids. Brennan and Emily are also hanging on by a thread. Based on the Married at First Sight season 17 mid-season trailer, it looks like Becca and Austin are also ill-fated.

5 The Experts Are Not Counseling The Couples Well

The Couples Have Need More Help Than They’ve Been Given

It has also become abundantly clear this season on Married at First Sight that the experts are not doing a good job of counseling the couples. Neither of the three experts has been able to get through to Brennan, who lost attraction for Emily when they came back from their honeymoon (via ET.) Nothing they have said has resonated with Brennan, and he has been stonewalling the process because of it. The experts owe it to Emily to understand Brennan better and coach him through why he is no longer attracted to Emily in a constructive way.

Since so many couples are arriving at an impasse and unable to work through their problems, it is an indication that the experts have not been counseling the individual pairs based on what they need to move forward in their marriages. The experts are not finding the root cause of the pairs’ issues, and many things are staying at the surface level. The experts need to dive deeper and create a better space for the couples to feel engaged and comprehend what they’re going through.

4 The Experts Don’t Step In Enough

The Experts Wait Too Long To Intervene

 a montage of the Married At First Sight experts with Brennan in the background

Most of the Married at First Sight season 17 couples need a lot of hand-holding from the experts, but they are not stepping in enough to give that support. Without that extra support, the couples have been derailing left and right. The experts seem to always step in when a problem has already gotten out of hand, and that tends to be too late when feelings are already hurt and the participants have lost trust. Were the experts to identify that they needed to counsel the couples sooner, many of the couples’ divisions might not get as big as they have.

3 Dr. Pia Is Passive Aggressive

Dr. Pia Is The Newest Expert

Dr. Pia is proving not to be a good fit as an expert. Instead of trying to hear Brennan’s concerns during a therapy session with Emily (via Lifetime), Dr. Pia was forceful in shutting down Brennan’s attempts to speak. Furthermore, when she counseled Lauren and Orion when Orion solidified he wanted a divorce, Dr. Pia clearly had a bias, because her disdain for Orion was written all over her face and facial expressions. Dr. Pia does not foster a comfortable environment where both partners feel safe to speak freely.

2 Pastor Cal & Dr. Pepper Are Not Effective

They Have Been On The Show Since The Beginning

Married at First Sight season 17 Dr Pepper and Pastor Cal sittin gon chairs talking

Dr. Pepper and Pastor Cal have been Married at First Sight experts for so many years now, and it seems like it has been too many years because they are losing their effectiveness. In the last three seasons, the experts have only had a 6% success rate, which speaks to their inability to do their jobs well. Ditching the failing skill set of Dr. Pepper and Pastor Cal might breathe new life into the show and give the couples a better shot at a well-matched marriage with the guidance they need.

1 The Experts Are Not Taking Accountability

The Experts Won’t Blame Themselves For Match Failures

Married at First Sght Season 17 Experts standing in a circle

What’s worse in all the failure shown on the experts’ part is that they won’t take accountability for their inability to do their jobs. They defer blame onto something else and still stand on their capacity to make viable matches and give good advice. This was especially apparent in Michael’s case when the experts stood on the precedent of a runaway bride never having happened before instead of owning that the mismatch was their fault. It is now apparent that the Married at First Sight experts are no longer capable of doing their jobs and are failing the participants.

Married at First Sight airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. EST.

Source: ET/YouTube, Lifetime/YouTube

Married at First Sight Season 17 poster

Married At First Sight

Based on the Danish version of the series, Married at First Sight is a reality show/social experiment that gives singles a chance to find a lifelong partnership with one particular caveat: they must agree to marry a stranger arranged the moment they meet. Experts provide counseling and guidance as they help couples navigate their new marriage with their unknown partner and highlight the journey of the newlyweds from wedding to honeymoon to beginning their new lives together. At the end of eight weeks, couples will decide to stay married or divorce.

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