'90 Day Fiancé' Experts Weigh In On The New 'Happily Ever After' Season

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'90 Day Fiancé' Experts Weigh In On The New 'Happily Ever After' Season

There’s nothing quite like a new season of 90 Day Fiancé — well, that is, except for the old seasons of the TLC show. When Season 6 of 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After? premiered on Sunday, April 25, reality show fans were introduced to the new gang. However, the “new” gang looked an awful lot like the old gang — and it also included more than a few stars audiences had been watching just the week before.

With Brandon and Julia, Mike and Natalie, and Jovi and Yara making the move from the flagship 90 Day series to the spin-off just seven days after their original season aired, some fans felt like they needed a break, and they took to social media to make their feelings known. Others were excited to follow the drama they’d just invested so much time in, curious to see where the stars’ stories went next. In order to get a real temperature check on where the franchise stands, I decided to check in with a few fans and experts to see how they’re feeling about this season.

The Season 6 premiere left many fans unimpressed

“I felt like the premiere was ‘familiar,’” said Linda Antwi, host of the “90 Day The Melanated Way” podcast. “As fans of the show, we were literally just coming off of the last season, and so it felt like a continuation of most of the couples from 90 Day Fiancé. There was a lot of ‘recapping’ of the couples, which was interesting, yet most of us have been following their stories from day one.”

Linda thought it was a “good reminder” for some couples, but also “a bit unnecessary” for others — and she’s not alone. Pretty much everyone felt that same way, including Twitter user @splashthatcat, a 90 Day fan who’s been featured on Strikes Back. “I thought that [it] wasted too much time introducing us to couples that we already know from previous seasons,” she said.

Geneva and Justine, hosts of the “Escape to Reality” podcast, weren’t particularly impressed either. However, their focus was more on which couples were chosen to return than how much time the show spent catching any potential new viewers up to date. “We feel that many of the couples are at the end of their story,” they said. In their opinion, pairs like Angela and Michael are at a “stalemate” and, at least at this point in their relationship, there just isn’t much to say.

But not everyone was disappointed

Lili, a fan who frequents the /r/90DayFiance subreddit, thought the premiere started off slow but quickly found its footing. “I’m hooked as always,” she shared. “I thought so far it’s great to see Angela doing something for herself.” Maggie, whose “Poppin’ Off” podcast launches in May, said Happily Ever After? is her favorite installment in the franchise and she was excited to see it return.

“I really loved catching up with Angela and Michael, Libby and Andrei, and Kalani and Asuelu because we haven’t heard from them in a minute,” she shared. “They're some of my favorite couples who have been on the franchise, and their stories all left off at interesting points, so I’m glad they’re back.”

Maggie isn’t the only one excited about the current cast

“I’m really happy to see the return of Yara and Jovi,” said Lili. “I’m hoping Yara puts Jovi in his place as he’s still wanting the life of a 20 year old, but I love Yara’s bluntness and honesty.” She’s interested in that same dynamic when it comes to Kalani and Asuelu and their families, too. “I’m excited to see [them] mostly because I want the [Kalani and Kolini] to put Asuelu’s sister and mother in their place.”

As for Geneva and Justine, they’ve got their eyes on Brandon and Julia, as does Linda. She’s also interested in Ronald and Tiffany’s storyline. But there are a few returning couples that fans aren’t so excited to see.

Mike and Natalie were particularly unpopular.

“I’m surprised that they [were] included … given the rumors of [their] breakup that have surfaced, the turmoil the relationship has had from the very beginning, and what we all saw on the Tell All. … They definitely bring drama to our screens, but it seems to be the same drama. They talk about working on their relationship without actually putting in the work to work on it.”

Geneva and Justine are also “definitely done done” with Natalie and Mike. “Their storyline is often edited to where you are missing crucial scenes and information to make sense of their story and how they ended up together,” they said. Either the show isn’t catching those moments on camera — and if not, why not — or they’re just not making the final cut.

And @splashthatcat had some particularly strong words when it came to the stars. “I’m dismayed by TLC continuing to show Natalie and Mike’s unholy union,” she said. “Their relationship is toxic, even by 90 Day standards.”

When it comes to Elizabeth and Andrei, opinions are mixed

“I do wish [they] got dropped,” said Lili. “They keep coming back and, collectively, a lot of people don’t seem to like them, including myself. It’s the same script with different lines every season they appear, so I have zero interest in them or their family. … Please get Elizabeth’s family off my screen.”

Geneva and Justine agree that all of the Libby/Andrei family stuff “seems staged” — but, that said, they are looking forward to the fight, and so is Maggie. The moment when cameras catch one of the other Potthast sisters throwing her drink at Libby and then “shuffling over to her to probably pinch her or something because we know THEY won’t be the ones beating each other black and blue” is just one highlight she mentioned. She’s also hoping to see Andrei and Charlie “fist fight already” after all of the mounting tension between them, especially considering the drama sure to come with Andrei asking Chuck for a loan to start his own house flipping business, one that will likely find itself competing with Chuck’s (and therefore Charlie’s).

With all that drama, the Potthast crew could have their own spin-off, and Linda would be more in favor of that then featuring them on Happily Ever After? “I think in the 90 Day universe, Andrei and Elizabeth’s storyline with their family could be a whole The Family Chantel situation where it’s its own entity,” she said.

Whether fans are actually interested in watching that show, however, is a different story, and @splashthatcat put it bluntly: “Stop trying to make the Family Libby happen.”

The drama all looks pretty promising, though

In addition to Libby’s fight, Maggie is also eagerly anticipating watching Angela and Michael’s baby journey (or lack of a baby journey) and Kalani and Asuelu’s issues. “I don’t think Michael has realized yet that 54 year old women can’t have babies, at least not naturally,” she said. “Angela’s one good egg has probably gone bad by now. Oh, and we know Skyla isn’t giving up any of her eggs.”

As for Kalani and Asuleu, she continued, “[They] are probably one of the most problematic couples on the 90 Day franchise. First of all, I can’t believe they’re still together, like… Wasn’t he living with his mom in Washington at some point? Every time I see them interact on screen, I just want to SHAKE Kalani and tell her to kick this man to the curb!! She’s funny, pretty, a great mom, and can do winged liner while having a conversation AND nursing. [She is] a literal superwoman and Asuelu is… a 12 year old boy in a 20-something year old man’s body.”

Kalani’s family and Asuelu’s family facing off is something a lot of fans are looking forward to. Linda remarked that everyone everyone under one roof seems like a recipe for trouble — and for good TV. She’s also excited to check in again with Ronald and Tiffany, who haven’t been regulars on any of the various 90 Day series in a minute, and so is @splashthatcat.

“I’m curious about [their] situation,” the Twitter user said. “I know from social media that they’ve been having issues. I do hope that they have a happy ending. I think that Tiffany got an unfair rep during her season for focusing on Ronald’s addiction. I don’t think that people realize that, when you’re dealing with a loved one with addiction issues, you have to be a hardass. It’s actually an act of love.”

Maggie is eager to see Tiffany kick Ronald’s ass, but she’s also rooting for them. While she hates how Ronald occasionally talks down to his wife, she thinks he seems like an OK guy overall. “He’s so good with her son,” she explained. “I kinda wanna see them work things out.”

That said, there are some couples fans would rather hear from

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“I would have loved it also if TLC included some of the older couples from earlier seasons, like Devar and Melanie, Paola and Russ (who are RV living right now), and Anny and Robert (who are having another baby),” Linda shared. Maggie would like to hear from older couples like Syngin and Tanya, Anna and Mursel, and Jenny and Sumit, while Lili gave a shout out to Loren and Alexei and David and Annie.

As for the Season 8 couples, Linda thinks they should’ve continued with the Rebecca and Zied storyline, while Geneva and Justine wanted to hear more from Stephanie (especially when it comes to where she stands with Harris), and Maggie had her fingers crossed for Tarik and Hazel.

“They actually have a storyline that I can and want to follow,” Maggie said. “Is Hazel gonna find herself a girlie friend? I guess we’ll never know, which is kinda disappointing.”

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One popular pick was Kenny and Armando, who’ve only been featured on one season of the show so far. “They’re the most normal couple to recently appear on the franchise,” @splashthatcat said. She thinks they could add “some balance to the dumpster fires currently raging” on the cast. “[90 Day has] definitely lost some of the balance of people on a positive journey of love vs. toxic people into reality show fame [that was featured] in earlier seasons.”

Maggie agreed with that take. “I know Happily Ever After? is mostly for the couples who still have issues to work out, but Kenny and Armanando are just the cutest couple, and you can definitely tell they have a deep love for each other,” she said. “Plus, it would be important to keep seeing how Armando’s family is still learning to accept him and how they live as a gay couple in a country where being gay isn’t necessarily acceptable. It would bring something different to the show. .... Balance is a good thing when it comes to reality TV.”

In general, fans think the newest couples could use a breather before they come back

“If I could give one note to the producers of HEA, it would be to switch up the couples,” Linda said. “Bring back some of the couples that we’ve been curious about from older seasons. I would also include some of the couples from their What Now and Just Landed franchises. Mix it up a bit! Keep us guessing!”

Maggie said the same. “Let most of the 90 Day Fiancé couples from the most recent season live their lives a little bit, and then bring them back on.”

As for Lili, her main advice for the franchise would be to simply “butt out.” While she noted that most of the show can be pretty slow, she seemed to chalk that up to production steering the ship. Looking at the promo for this season, the main highlights that she’s got her eye on are the moments when things turn physical because the actual heart of the conflict finally boils over. “Let things flow,” she said. “With Angela, [Libby], and Kalani’s stories, they don’t need help to be made into great reality TV.”


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Images: TLC

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