If you're not familiar with the craziness that is the TLC line-up, a show like 90 Day Fiancé sounds pretty, uh, bizarre. And, TBH, it kind of is (though nowhere near as bizarre as some of TLC's other shows considering one is called I Catfished My Kid). But explaining exactly how 90 Day Fiancé works — and what it is — does get a little complicated. Still, when a friend doesn't know what the deal is, somebody has to clue them in — and we gave it our best shot. Watch the video above to see just what it's like trying to explain what 90 Day Fiancé is to someone who's never heard of it.
Yeah, the whole thing basically sounds fake and illegal AF, but surprisingly, some real couples come out of the show. Well, maybe "real" is a stretch, considering how frequently it seems like one half of the couple is getting taken advantage of, but they are really together. Which is to say that, as far as drumming up drama goes, that's probably part of any TV show. But according to one of the show's stars, Anfisa Arkhipchenko, the show isn't going around and putting together screwed up couples. Instead, they're finding people already applying for the K-1 Fiancé visa and then recruit them.
"The show doesn't help with anything related to immigration," she explained in an Instagram post. "They just start filming on the day foreign fiancé(e) arrives to the USA and continue until the couple gets married… This '90 days' are definitely not to get to know your partner because you already know the person you've had long enough relationship with and decided you want to marry them. That's why all of the couples end up married every season." Sounds legit to us. The only problem is all those married couples don't always stay married.
Just because the show and the couples are real and the marriages are fully legit, it doesn't mean there's any real love in the picture — but plenty of the pairs are making it work regardless. Sure, Anfisa and her husband Jorge Nava may be constantly on-and-off (it's a really will-they-won't-they romance straight out of your favorite sitcom, are we right?), but other couples are making it work. In fact, some of the couples even have babies together in addition to their in-tact marriages. If that's not a testatment to the show's success stories, we don't know what is.
And interest in the couples has even spawned two spin-off series, 90 Day Fiancé: Before The 90 Days and 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After. On Happily Ever After, the series follows some of the fan-favorites who are chugging along despite breakups and make-ups — and follows some halves of the couples through divorces, too. And while it's definitely fascinating to see people make it work amidst all the mess, it's not key for the audience either. Let's be real: most of the time, success is not what we're looking for when we turn this show on. There are for sure some couples we're rooting for, but most of the time, we're tuning in for the drama alone. Because it is literally unbelievable that some of these couples exist, forget whether or not they're actually in love with each other. Hey, they're making it happen somehow so that about speaks for itself. We're just happy to be along for the ride.