“Married at First Sight: The First Year” is back with its third season of chronicling the marriages of two “MAFS” OG couples, Doug Hehner & Jamie Otis-Hehner and Jason Carrion & Cortney Hendrix.

Unfortunately, “MAFS: TFY” is kind of suffering from the “been there, done that” doldrums. What makes the original show so interesting three seasons in is that the couples change every season and there are some stakes involved — will they or won’t they stay together?

“The First Year” doesn’t have either of those things, so here are three things the show could do to spice things up. Note: Yes, this is “reality” TV, so you may say to yourself that the show can’t simply *make* these things happen. But we all know reality TV can be prodded and even dictated by production, so the “Married at First Sight” team could probably make these things happen.

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1. Cortney and Jason need to get pregnant

Cortney and Jason are “Married At First Sight’s” most stable couple, but in TV land, stable usually means boring. Case in point, the biggest thing that happens in the premiere episode is that Jason plans a surprise birthday dinner for Cortney, but he doesn’t take that opportunity to propose to her, which is something she still wants him to do since it never happened in their unconventional relationship.

There really is no drama here, so having Cortney get pregnant would certainly liven things up.

2. Jamie and Doug need to split up

Jamie and Doug have never really felt quite right for each other. Sure, Jamie came around to loving Doug after initially balking at the idea of marrying him, but they still feel like a dysfunctional “MAFS” couple. And while stability is boring, the same old dysfunction is boring in its own way. But a break-up on the show would be pretty dramatic. It would also fit nicely because …

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3. The show needs to get new couples – from ‘MAFS’

“The First Year” has tried to infuse the show with new blood in the form of Jason’s friend Neph and Jasmine, some woman he met in Las Vegas who has now moved from Texas to New York to be with him. Unfortunately, it feels out of place to follow the lives of two people who didn’t get married at first sight. Does anyone actually care about Neph and Jasmine?

Also unfortunately, both Seasons 2 and 3 have failed to produce a couple the “Married at First Sight” franchise can add to the spinoff.

Perhaps the show could up the ante for the Season 4 couples — stay together, get more money! — and then swap two of those couples for Jamie and Doug, who have now theoretically split up. If Cortney and Jason get pregnant, that would give “The First Year” three relatively new, interesting situations to follow.

Otherwise, maybe “Married at First Sight” should split from “The First Year.” They just don’t seem to have the same connection as they used to.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."