Below are spoilers for Love Is Blind Season 5 that are as big as Lydia’s personality.
The creator of Love Is Blind“Sheds some light on the strange behavior of two cast members on the hit Netflix dating show.
At the end of the release of the first episodes of season 5 Last week, it was revealed that two singles – Lydia Velez Gonzalez and Uche Okoroha – previously dated. The situation was a first for the show and threatened its very premise.
The show promotes itself as an “experiment” that explores whether two people can fall in love without ever seeing each other. To achieve this, participants talk to each other through a wall that separates adjacent rooms, called “pods.” If they understand each other just through conversation, they have the opportunity to get engaged and eventually meet in person.
But on the first day of filming season five, Lydia and Uche were shocked to discover that they had already met… and, um, knew each other pretty well.
“The fact that Lydia and Uche not only knew each other but were already in a romantic relationship was a complete surprise to me. “I was completely caught off guard,” said Chris Coelen, show creator and CEO of Kinetic Company Variety said on Tuesday. “It was a complete shock. To be honest, it was like, ‘What are we doing?’ Nobody had a clue.”
Lydia immediately realized that she already knew Uche due to his voice and unique name within seconds of meeting in the pods and soon brought it to Uche’s attention. Lydia then suggested that they take the opportunity to try and rekindle their romance. However, Uche rejected the offer.
Coelen told Variety that he took the two aside shortly after their first pod date.
“We told each of them individually that we had no idea how this happened and we were disappointed, but we felt it was the right decision to leave the experiment,” he said.
Coelen said the two were “completely devastated” by the decision and both “expressed a tremendous desire to stay and move on and spoke about their investment in the process.”
Coelen said he made a deal with them after both “confirmed they had absolutely no interest in the other.”
“We all agreed that if they didn’t tell people about their story right away, they could stay on the condition that they weren’t interested in each other,” Coelen told Variety. “And at that point, on the first day of the pods, we all felt like the information wasn’t relevant, and we all agreed that disclosing that information would have ruined everyone’s overall experience.”
Therefore, Uche and Lydia’s past was not revealed to the other contestants or the audience until Episode 3 – a point in time when Uche and Lydia had already formed strong bonds with other contestants.
The production’s decision to keep the secret made for very entertaining television, but likely resulted in confusion and possibly injury for the castmates involved.
Lydia, in particular, exhibited strange behavior before this revelation was made – you can read more about that in HuffPost’s live blog of the showin which all the details of the resulting drama are discussed.
Former Love Is Blind contestants have been more vocal lately about producers’ questionable ethics behind the scenes. Danielle Ruhl from season 2 Insider said Earlier this year, she was pressured by production to stay on the show even though she has major psychological problems. Season 1 contestant Lauren Speed criticized Love Is Blind in 2022 by tweet that most of the pairings on the show were “forced” or pushed “for entertainment purposes.”
Other former cast members have complained about lack of sleep, terrible living conditions and limited access to food and water, despite high levels of alcohol consumption during filming of the show, according to Insider.