Netflix has been known to produce some of the most evil sociological experiments in television history (looking at you, The Ultimatum and Love Is Blind!). But the streaming juggernaut shows that it has a wide range of talent with its newest reality series, Down for Love.
Down for Love is a kinder, more natural type of exploration than most contemporary dating shows, which take great pleasure in making its participants as uncomfortable as possible for our entertainment. The show, which is set in stunning New Zealand, follows numerous young people with Down syndrome who are dating in their quest for a relationship. The five-episode show made its Netflix debut on August 11 after airing in New Zealand last year.
Ten individuals with Down syndrome are followed in the film Down for Love, which was created in collaboration with the New Zealand Down Syndrome Association. Libby Hunsdale, an actress who most recently appeared in the 2021 movie Poppy, Carlos Biggemann, an award-winning photographer, and Lily-Mae Ivatt Oakley, an 18-year-old model, are a few of them.
The Down For Love show will remind you of another hit series, Love on the Spectrum
The Down for Love daters have a diverse range of passions, skills, and achievements. Josh is a happy-go-lucky party animal who enjoys going out, while Aelinor is a quieter, more reserved individual with fiery red hair who eventually catches the attention of the outgoing, multilingual Bolivian Carlos. Leisel, who we quickly learn is an absolute master at miniature golf, is one thing; Brayden, who is admittedly not quite as brilliant at golfing, is quite another. However, he is very good at encouraging Leisel and demonstrating how much he cares for her.
Though they don’t have the same producer, Love on the Spectrum and Down for Love appear to have a lot in common. Another expertly constructed feel-good dating program, Love on the Spectrum, is headquartered in Australia and chronicles the love lives of those with autism. Both television shows feature dating coach sessions to assist their participants in navigating dating and intimacy as they follow a select group of individuals on a search for love. (While Attitude Pictures and TVF International created Down for Love, Northern Pictures is responsible for Love on the Spectrum.)The series concentrates on Jimmy and Sharnae Berresford a little more heavily than Down for Love concentrates on Brooke and Jesse, its own pre-existing couple.
Brooke and Jesse’s presence makes the Down For Love more powerful
By the time Down with Love was over, we were longing for the stability Jimmy and Sharnae offered in the other series. Even if it can be interesting to see people go on blind dates, Brooke and Jesse’s more prominent presence would have allowed the show to show a more sophisticated sort of romance.
A private dance lesson, a rock climbing session, and—possibly most enviably—a private tour of the New Zealand-based special effects and prop studio Wt Workshop are just a few of the inventive ways that Down for Love stages its meet-ups. The happy pair, Emma and John, fall in love on one particularly memorable date while seeing Auckland’s Van Gogh Alive exhibition.
More than anything, it’s scenes like these, especially when John wraps his arm around Emma as she sobs in front of the sunflowers, that make Down for Love so powerful. Few things are more “feel-good” than a show that is open-minded and truly curious about how people fall in love, and Down for Love knows that its characters yearn for connection for the same reasons as everyone else. At the very beginning of the series, one competitor says, “That’s what makes you human.”
The show successfully depicts the love lives of the disabled and how they manage their emotions throughout the sessions and dates. You will absolutely love this one if you are into reality shows. The series is now streaming on Netflix to watch.
Awsmone rates the show Down For Love 3.5 out of 5.