Similar to MTV’s “The Challenge” host TJ Lavin, Ryan Devlin of “Are You the One?” rarely veers from his naturally low-key personality.
The happy-go-lucky 36-year-old pops in briefly to lead the contestants on a group challenge, and we don’t see him again until the matching ceremony. He’s a chill, likable guy. Not easily rattled, and stands through each matching ceremony with what appears to be a never-ending well of patience.
But Season 5 has rattled Devlin’s cage. Just when you think this current group of 22 singles couldn’t possibly do something any dumber, they do — and it’s like a disease traveling through the house. Stupidity is taking over each person one at a time, as even the brighter minds competing on this cycle toss in the towel. What’s the point of the show, if nearly half the house is saying, “Screw it, I don’t care about my perfect match — I’m sticking with the person who is already a confirmed no-match for me.”
We’d love to say it’s admirable, these youngins’ caring more about love than money as they do — but the fact that they all willingly signed up to be on a competition dating series knocks our brains back into focus. Everyone on this season apparently wants to be Romeo and Juliet, even though we doubt more than three of these 22 people could actually tell you how the story of the two most famous star-crossed lovers ends. During Wednesday night’s (Feb. 22) matching ceremony — in which after week seven, the cast still can’t get more than four perfect pairings right — Devlin finally loses his cool.
Now, Ryan is so outwardly friendly, so sweet, he might actually be made of sugar and spice: Even the slightest rise in his voice’s volume means business. And as [sic] Tyranny correctly translates, “Ryan basically told us we’re being a bunch of dumbasses…”
And she’s right. Because he’s right — and if he has to listen to one more contestant boldly confess they’re sticking with their no-match, he might actually start yelling at these fools… Or just quit.
Now, let’s say these couples truly do have insanely strong feelings for their un-match — guess what? They still owe it to their fellow castmembers to at least try and figure out who is their perfect match. It’s a game, not real life — and whether there’s anything there at all — when it’s done, go for it. Fly around the world with your un-match, thumbing your nose at fate. Knock yourself out!
Just do it when you’re not also ruining 21 other people’s chances at $500,000.
We understand Ryan’s outward frustration — but we’re not positive his speech at the end of the episode actually resonated with the cast. While Lavin also never outwardly yells at the contestants, he demands their respect: He can break even longtime “Challenge” veterans merely by saying, “I’m disappointed in you.”
Ryan Devlin does not have this power. He seems like a wonderful guy, but he speaks with all the authority of a middle-school substitute teacher. (Which is exactly how he’s got to feel, at this point.)
So, while these dedicated un-matches think their staunch devotion is both honorable and world-changing, they’re still really just being selfish. And it’s amazing to see how each week, they’re shocked that remaining with their no-match, and ignoring every other person in the house who may turn out to be their perfect match, is continuously leading them to failure.
Please, please. Get it together, Season 5!
“Are You the One?” airs on Wednesday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT on MTV.