If You Are the One (IYATO) is back and it’s better than ever. It seems the producers follow the same mentality as the toughest tiger mum - always strive for improvement. After all, if you don’t think you can improve on something, are you thinking like an A-sian or are you thinking like a B-sian?
The booming success of IYATO has enabled it to produce seven years’ worth of quality content and burn queens. Of course, some things could never change, and those who love watching the girls throw shade can rest easy as that element is still very much present.
The new and revamped format does feature some significant changes which will keep audiences enthralled and hold off the dreaded seven-year itch. Here's a preview...
It starts off with an anonymous suitor
In previous seasons, IYATO began with the panel of 24 beauties already onstage, anxiously waiting to welcome their potential suitor before they learn any information about him. In the new format, the girls are shown a brief introductory clip about the candidate which doesn’t include his face and are able to ask a few questions while the suitor waits backstage. Surprisingly, the girls are very welcoming and open-minded when reviewing the candidate even though they can't see his face, which just goes to show that looks aren’t everything.
When the time comes for the big reveal, a clever montage is shown, including the candidate’s baby photos, before the dividing screen is lifted at a glacial pace, causing severe heart palpitations. The excitement the girls feel as the screen slowly rises could only be second to the excruciatingly slow opening of security doors at the Myer Boxing Day sales.
Girls are sorted into the “favourites” section and the “observation” section
From backstage, the suitor is able to watch and assess each girl as she is introduced and walks down the runway individually, strutting her stuff, putting Victoria's Secret models to shame.
As the girls walk down the runway, the suitor is able to swipe right for a “favourite” or swipe left for a “maybe”, which puts those girls in his “observation” section – just like 3D Tinder! The girls in the favourites section are able to turn on/off their lights as they please, however the girls in the observation section must keep their lights on (nothing like a bit of Stockholm Syndrome to keep the romance alive!) and instead use their "love-o-meter" to express how much they are interested in the contestant as the video reels play.
The opportunity to pick not one, but two dreamgirls
Instead of just getting to pick one ideal girl on whom to pin all their romantic hopes and dreams, contestants in the new season are able to pick their top two favourites (from either section) to increase the chances of securing that six-night romantic getaway.
Before the final round of questioning, the candidate has the opportunity to swap out his finalists with anyone from the “favourites” section who has left her light on. At the final round, the candidate must make his final choice, however he still does not know if the girl of his dreams will leave him in the dark...
The new format of IYATO gives some power back to the guys by letting them sort the girls into sections and creates an interesting dynamic where the girls are suddenly the ones being judged straight off the bat. This leads to some interesting exchanges among the girls, as well as between the girls and the candidates, allowing more personality to shine through. And if there's one thing this show does well, it's personality.
Catch all the action on the new-look If You Are the One on Sunday 22 October at 7:20pm on SBS VICELAND.