Newlyweds: The First Year

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Newlyweds: The First Year TV Poster Image
Marriage docu has mature themes, plus arguing, sex talk.

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age 14+
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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The series shows the joys and hurdles that come with the first year of marriage, and how couples cope with them. The unique challenges that gay couples when getting married face are also addressed.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The cast are from all walks of life; many of them come from professional tv/media entertainment backgrounds. One couple is gay. A bride banned her bridesmaids from the wedding party because they did not lose weight.


Frustrations and jealousy often leads to spats between couples about money, having children, household duties, and other topics. Couples sometimes yell, scream, and threaten each other during heated arguments; the police are called during one altercation.


Includes references to having sex and sexual acts. References are made to body functions and the size of private body parts.


Words like "pissed" are audible;  "s--t" and "f--k" are bleeped. Rude gestures are visible.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Couples drink beer, wine, cocktails, and champagne in a variety of settings.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the reality series Newlyweds: The First Year features lots of mature themes surrounding the adjustment married folks make during their first year of wedded bliss. Scenes relating to sex (including discussions about specific sexual acts) and angry arguments between couples are frequent. Cursing and drinking is also common. The show isn't for kids, nor is it entirely realistic, but parents could use the show as a starting point for conversations about what marriage can be really like with their older teens.

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What's the story?

The reality series NEWLYWEDS: THE FIRST YEAR follows couples from a few days before their wedding and through their first year of marriage. The four distinct pairs, including an Atlanta-based Bollywood pop star and the head of a digital start up; a New York costume designer who is entering a conservative Christian arrangement with a L.A. based music producer; a Manhattan social butterfly who fell in love with a family-oriented Greek businessman from Long Island; and a colorful Hollywood tabloid reporter marrying a man 16 years his senior, are tying the knot for what they hope is forever. But marriage isn't easy, and each duo finds themselves working through issues that range from day-to-day living logistics to adjusting to the ups and downs of being bound to someone for life.

Is it any good?

Newlyweds offers a glimpse of some of the many challenges couples face when they choose to say "I do" in a society where 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce. They struggle with things ranging from coping with each other's idiosyncrasies to more serious matters, like dealing with finances and making decisions about having children, that have the potential to tear them apart. They also reveal their thoughts and fears about losing themselves in the relationship, as well as other compromises that they are making in order to be together.

The series contains lots of intimate moments and heated arguments, all of which make for a great voyeuristic viewing experience. But Newlyweds also contains lots of themes that serve as food for thought for those who are thinking about getting married. It also serves as a reminder that being in a loving, committed and healthy relationship is wonderful, but married life isn't always a romantic fantasy.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about marriage. Why do you think 50 percent of marriages end in divorce? Why are weddings and marriage such a popular topic for TV?

  • How do weddings and marriage get depicted on TV and in movies? Do reality shows do a better job of portraying what marriage is really like, vs fictional media? How do these portrayals impact the way we think about what it means to be married?

TV details

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