By Anne Louise Bannon,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Reality show turns getting married into a competition.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show's underlying message is that a wedding -- which to many is a deeply personal celebration -- is a competitive act, and one that plays out exclusively among women. That said, the sniping is kept to a minimum by reality-show standards. In one episode, a bride says she wants her wedding to be all about her, while another derides that attitude. Traditional values, such as taking husbands' name -- and in one case, promising to be prompt with household duties -- take precedence.
Positive Role Models
The brides' behavior is mixed: None is Bridezilla, but some come across as a little intolerant of others' cultural values. For example, in one episode, a Hindu bride's ceremony is three hours long -- which one of the brides complains about. Another bride complains that the food at the Hindu reception is vegetarian. On the other hand, no one is nasty or mean-spirited, and the losers are mostly gracious.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some tame sexual joking. One groom dances with his hand on his bride's backside; another, while going for the garter, fakes pulling off a pair of ugly panties as a joke. Etc.
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Not much to worry about. Most of the iffy language -- like "butt" -- is tied in with mildly off-color sexual joking.
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Products & Purchases
A shot of an Air New Zealand jet is seen while the narrator is talking about how the winning bride will receive a fabulous honeymoon trip.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Social drinking at wedding celebrations.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this reality show promotes the idea that weddings are competitive events for women, as each episode features four brides judging one another's celebrations. While the brides aren't terribly snippy -- and even offer compliments to the other women -- they're not always gracious and occasionally come off as intolerant or ignorant of others' values or traditions. Some very mild sexual joking pops up between brides and grooms.
Where to Watch
Based on 4 parent reviews
It is evident that despite that the show tries to keep each bride from underscoring the other, that is teach bride's goal. They talk a lot about what they don't like personally instead of looking at the wedding and rating it for what it is. For example, a bride may say I don't like being outside. It is not about you, it is about the bride at that time's wedding. They are so busy being critical that they lose themselves. So selfish.
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What's the Story?
Like many of TLC's reality shows, FOUR WEDDINGS focuses on a major event in women's lives: in this case, their wedding. The show takes the idea that every bride believes her wedding is the best and turns getting married into a competition. Four brides critique one another's celebrations, judging based on venue, food, dress, and overall experience. The bride with the most points in the end gets an extravagant honeymoon trip as the prize.
Is It Any Good?
You have to give the producers points for not going as crazy with this concept as they could have. Everyone behaves reasonably well -- the sniping is kept to a minimum, and even the worst complaints are balanced out by compliments.
Still, the result isn't the most scintillating television, and ultimately you're left wondering: Why bother? After all, each wedding was, in fact, the best for that particular bride.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about what's real on the show and what might have been staged for the cameras. How do you think people change their behavior when cameras are on them?
Why would people want to have their weddings critiqued? What makes people agree to put personal experiences out into the world for public scrutiny? Would you want your wedding or other ceremony to be filmed for a reality show?
What role does the media play in making us think that the wedding is as important as the marriage? What does a wedding really signify?
- Premiere date: July 6, 2009
- Network: TLC
- Genre: Reality TV
- TV rating: TV-PG
- Last updated: May 21, 2023
Did we miss something on diversity?
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