Source: Courtesy / Paramount
Tonight is the night! MTV is premiering their brand new dating show The Love Experiment, a new series that brings the choices and excitement of dating apps to life, premiering on Tuesday, August 15th at 10PM ET/PT. The Love Experiment continues to heat up Tuesday nights on MTV joining Love & Hip-Hop: Atlanta at 8PM and Caught in the Act: Unfaithful at 9PM.
In this new dating experiment, MTV will bring the choices and excitement of dating apps to life! Three single best friends will enter a literal “hall” of eligible men, who are all ready to commit. Inside this dating utopia, the women are in control as they search for real love. But they quickly realize having too many ideal choices is harder than it seems. In the end, they’ll have to answer the question, “If you’re offered everything you want…will you ultimately choose what you need?”
The show features three besties Marcia, Paige and Tamara as well as their coach/guru Mari Waugh (Spicy Mari), CEO & Founder of The Spicy Life, who helps guide them through the experiment as a relationship expert. Mari has dedicated her life’s work to encouraging singles and couples to communicate and connect more effectively by incorporating passion and adventure back into their interpersonal relationships.
Get a first look below and then continue for our Q&A with the ladies
It’s so refreshing to have a dating show with three Black women on it, what do you think about that?
Tam: That’s one of the things that me and the girls like to brag about and talk about so much is the fact that there are three Black women leading a show where there’s no ratchet stuff, just showing us in a positive light, looking to find love with these top tier men, so it’s different, we love it and it’s just something great to be a part of.
Was the candidate pool truly full of “High Value Men”?
Paige: We couldn’t tell when we first got into the room what it was that we were going to get, whether it was careers, whether it was their personalities, but I think the guys were up to par.
Tam: I’m very picky when it comes to dating. I will say a lot of the guys were very easy on the eyes, so of course they were attractive. That was the easy part. It was the whole process of getting to know them, to see do the looks match up with the personality and the things that I would want my man to represent, so that was the challenging part. But it was fun, very fun and different.
Marcia: Like they were saying, you get to see them but you know once you really get down to it I feel like you get to know the value of someone, if you want to put it on that, that’s up to that person so you just have to wait and see. If they’re high value to the viewers then that’s what it is but they’re easy on the eyes and it wasn’t hard making these decisions.
How was this experience unique for you as far as dating?
Tam: I would say out of all the girls I don’t know how to date multiple men at a time so that was challenging for me. I’m like one of the ones that’s like ‘That’s my man. I’m done. I’m out of the game.’ So this taught me how to date in a different setting and not to put all my eggs in one basket and now you can compare these guys like, ‘OK I like this guy, but I like this guy, but I don’t like that,’ so it was just happening really really fast so we had to put our big girl panties on. We had to make adult decisions and we had to make them fast because it’s not like we had months and months to get to know these guys. It was like really love it or you hate it.
Paige: Yeah it really getting to look into ourselves.
Marcia: Having my friends there really helped because it is such a fast process, but at the same time when you have people that you really care about right there and they have your best interest at heart, like just run things past them right then and there, you get to say what you think about this person you get to see what they see that you might not be seeing, because you might just be looking at them like ‘Yes I do think I do want this man,’ but that’s red flags to ignore it, so it’s good to just have here and especially if like if you’ve never use the dating app or anything, like it’s right here, it’s in your face.
Tam: That’s what I love about this show, which which is what really sold us all on the concept, because like a lot of these dating shows or the dating shows that you’re familiar with, you’re dating by yourself it’s you with all of these different contestants, but for this show you got your cheat code with you, got the girls next to you helping you with the decision making process.
Watching the trailer I saw some tears, what was getting you all emotional like that?
Paige: Spicy Mari was bringing out our real true authenticity and just making sure that we were being true with ourselves. Also, making the decisions! There were moments where there were tough decisions and we didn’t even expect ourselves to be that vulnerable until we were. Then we’re like, ‘I guess here I am like crying on television,’ but it was real and I think that’s the point. I’m very true — I’m emotional, I try to act like I’m always going to have a good time and everything, but I very much so wear my heart on my sleeve. So it was a lot of fun, but it was a lot of open vulnerable moments that we had to be really real and I’m just like, if I cried today, I cried today, if I was laughing and then crying the next moment then yeah, I was.
Tam: At the end of the day we’re women too. Of course women a lot of the time, we have to put this mask on and make it seem like we don’t feel anything, we’re too tough or that we don’t need a man or that whole persona, but like we have some real raw moments on this show where our vulnerability was exposed and it was like ‘Dang they got me really messed up right now!’ So it was like happy tears, it was sad tears it was a lot of different emotions that we went through during this process.
Paige: I think embarrassment was a choice. We understood embarrassment was a choice, so it was like, ‘OK cool so are we going to be embarrassed about it? Are we going just be like, ‘Yeah I cried today and now I’m back here on my next day?’
Marcia: There are so many people that can relate to that. Even now we feel like, ‘Oh my God, all eyes on me, I’m crying,’ but somebody literally watching this is crying right now, so to be so relatable and being so open with ourselves to just let other people know like, ‘It’s OK, everybody is going through the same stuff.’ If you’ve been having a hard time dating you are not alone. We are right here and we we’re showing you up close and personal exactly what we’re going through. Everybody is going through it.
What surprised you most about this process?
Marcia: For me just the effort that everyone put into it to make sure that we really were getting a good opportunity to meet people and to show us exactly what we can do moving forward, dating, being open with people, not you know just kicking somebody to the curb just because you might get into one little altercation, so that’s what I took from it.
Tam: What I took from it was just one, learning a lot about myself and the things that I thought I once wanted and you know what I thought I needed Mari definitely exposed that can help us open up in a way that I didn’t think was essential to me. I’m like, ‘No I’m perfect, I got my life figured out, like I’m not the problem, you’re the problem.’ So that was different. So it’s like we’re getting therapy and we’re also still healing and then we’re also being able to hear these men in a different way, to be like ‘Yes you are here to court us, you are trying to win us over, but what can I do to make your life easier and to love you properly?’ That was something that a lot of us had to navigate through and get through all those challenges throughout the show but so you’re going to see us laugh, you’re gonna see us cry and real bonds were really built through this show.
Paige: I think wants and needs are real conversation. We really truly had to like write on paper like she was making us do actual homework, Mari was making us do homework and she was making sure we understood we do want to grow when we leave here, but we also want to make sure that yeah these guys feel like they won something too. It was quite the experience. I think the whole experiment is a surprise, because we walked in rooms full of men and we were like, ‘OK this one or this one?’ It was really like for real it was not a game.
How hard was it dating in front of cameras?
Tam: I just kind of like beforehand just told them, ‘Just be you.’ It’s kind of hard to tell you that when cameras are all in your face, but if you want this to be something real and we go home and the cameras are gone, I need to see who that person is, so I told them that.
Paige: Yeah we all told them that. We were like, listen we’re being real, we’re from Atlanta so we can’t really give you anything other than ourselves and I think when we realized that somebody was being something else we’d be like ‘OK yeah you here for that? Move along.’
Who had the most audacity?
Tam: Pick a night, pick a day!
Marcia: Stop. Here’s the thing about men okay? They all have the audacity. That’s the thing. It’s in them, it ain’t on them, it’s in them. I’m gonna just leave it at that because they all have it. It is not just one particular person, it was just like y’all men as a group.
Paige: Also we had a little audacity sometimes too. We was like, we were trying it, we was trying it girl.
Tam: Speak for yourself.
Marcia: It is fun. I feel like we all have fun. The guys, the girls, it was all such a great experience, audacity or otherwise we all had a great time.
Paige: What I really am excited to see is some of the scenes that we were eating or we didn’t know if they were shooting us, and we didn’t know and we maybe were being goofy or anything like that. We were having the audacity to play. We were really being ourselves so we were cutting up sometimes but the other audacity, the ‘You tried it!’ They was doing it. The men was definitely doing that.
Walking away from this experience, what do you think is the biggest lesson that you’ll carry?
Paige: Not to put all my eggs in one basket.
Marcia: Always to put you first and never settle. Don’t close your heart out but at the same time don’t underestimate your gut and your intuition because I really feel like it’ll never steer you wrong.
The Love Experiment premieres on Tuesday, August 15th at 10PM ET/PT