The day of the wedding finally dawns with a downpour on the festive wedding scene. A bad omen? Or good luck? We’ll leave it for you to decide. As Randi prepares for the day ahead, she once again over-compensates with a heavy hand on the eyeliner. Some folks drink, some use pills .. Randi uses eyeliner.
With five hours to go until the wedding, Randi’s mom Catherine awakens saying she is exhausted and sad. As big brother Pat porks up on breakfast, he mumbles that the rain killed his idea to catch the ‘wedding thing’ on fire.
Claudia arrives to remind Steve and Randi that today is the big day. “No turning back.” If we didn’t already know, she reiterates that the two must make it thorugh the ceremony and each say “I do.” The two major obstacles in this task: Every single member of their families must be present. And if anyone objects, they will not receive the cash prize.
Thunder claps ominously in the background. Melanie feels as though she is getting ready for a funeral. She does not want to participate in the wedding.
As Randi has her makeup applied by a professional, she admits she is ready to crack. She knows her family will be wanting to have heart-to-heart talks with her during the day, and she’s not sure she can handle their comments without breaking down.
Right on cue, Dad arrives. He reminds Randi that in the four days the family has been in the mansion, they really haven’t spent much time with her. Melanie is taking all this the hardest, and Bruce thinks Randi should spend some time with her.
“No. Why make this a sorrowful day?” responds Randi. “I don’t want her and I red-eyed and crying. Tell her I love her though.” In confessional, she is afraid that Melanie has seen too much in her eyes already, that she knows what everyone else missed: Randi is not in love with Steve.
Again Catherine tells us that Melanie feels left out. Apparently the girls are very close, and Melanie wanted to be very involved in her big sister’s big day.
30 minutes till the wedding
Steve says he was ‘dying’ with anticipation of all the things he had to do during the wedding. Which makes us, once again, wonder – not if the wedding will be a debacle, we know that is coming – but how. “She’ll never believe the last twist,” says Steve, with his now familiar giggle.
Meanwhile, Catherine admonishes Pat to get dressed. Here we find that the Coy family is of proud Irish heritage, and the brothers had always promised to wear kilts to their sister’s wedding. Pat dons his kilt and flashes Catherine to show her he’s properly dressed. And in keeping with his heritage, we see him later doffing a beer before the start of the wedding.
Fox annoyingly treats us to more of Randi’s anxiety and Mel’s tears, as the male half of the family quietly simmers. All of this accompanied by dramatic music and loud claps of thunder, designed to increase our suspense.
Finally the wedding begins. Breathlessly we wait to see who will arrive. Mom is seated and Pat sits with his arm around her shoulders. As Dad and Randi prepare to make their entrance down the long staircase, Bruce says something that I find oddly moving, “I’ll catch you if you fall.”
Maybe I’m sappy and sentimental. Much as I’d truly like to poke fun at the Coy family and the improbability of this whole situation, I can’t ignore the fact that Randi is blessed to be well-loved by her family, and especially by her father. The following exchange speaks volumes:
Bruce: Are you really going to do this?
Bruce: Because you love him?
Bruce: And you’ll love him until the end?
And with that, and without another word, Bruce began their walk to the bridal archway.
Please speak now
A priest arrives and begins the wedding vows. Randi looks perfectly beautiful. She glances at her family, who look perfectly miserable. Bobby’s eyes and face have turned red, and Catherine smiles the smile of the brave. When Steve stumbles in repeating his vows, the “Williams family” beams with pride.
Finally, the moment we knew was coming. “If anyone objects to this marriage, please speak now or forever hold your peace.”
One one thousand, two one thousand, three one thousand ….. I get to twenty amid more shots of Pat’s grumbling and the rest of the family shooting dramatic looks at one another. Pat appears to be about to rise from his seat. The pause lengthens through a commercial break. After the break is over, we begin the process again, “If anyone objects to this marriage, please speak now or forever hold your peace.”
One one thousand, two one thousand … at twenty-five one thousand I’m yelling at the screen: “Damn the editing!” Soon enough, the relief washes over Randi’s face as she realizes she’s won the prize, she’s made it past the hardest parts. Now all that’s left are the “I do’s”
Of course, Randi never seems to properly figure the Steve part of the equation. “There’s one last twist,” says Steve. “Randi didn’t know I was about to blow the whole thing.”
Randi gets through her “I do” and it’s Steve’s turn. Dramatic pause. “Steve? Steven?”
(Stuttering) “Uh, I .. uh. I can’t. I’m sorry. This is fake. This is not real. We’re faking this. This is not a real wedding.”
With this, Catherine has finally had enough. She rises and walks away, followed closely by Pat. Steve shouts after her, “Please listen to what I have to say.” Catherine waves him off. Bobby and Mel follow mom, leaving Bruce to face the confession. Actually, I sense Bruce is trying to hold back a big smile. As long as Randi isn’t getting married to this big, fat, obnoxious man, he can handle anything else.
Randi turns to Steve with a look of amazement and disgust. She hitches up her train and pulls a .22 from her garter belt. “You moron! You idiot! You just cost me $500,000.” Okay, that didn’t happen. But it would have been lots of fun. Actually, what she says is, “I’ve just ruined my family,” and appropriately the thunder rumbles again.
Upstairs Catherine has changed her clothes and begun packing. “We’re leaving.” A producer huddles in the bathroom with Catherine and The Siblings, pleading with them to return to the courtyard to hear the rest of what Steve has to say. Finally, Catherine consents to return for five minutes. Nothing more.
In a bizarre twist, best friend Anna is crying, saying that she just loves Steve and “his family is really great.” Dad is still pacing in the courtyard, feeling he should stay with Randi, when the family re-emerges.
Bruce points his finger at Randi, “You’re a killer. You’re killing me.” To which Randi protests, “I did this for you guys.” Bruce responds, “Wow. I can’t wait to hear how.”
Steve begins a wonderful soliloquy. “We are sorry that this happened. Randi and I did not meet on a reality dating show and fall in love. We met here a couple of weeks ago. We agreed to be part of a show that was a con - a challenge to convince our families that we had fallen in love and were getting married. It seemed like a good idea. A fun idea. The idea was that we were a mismatched pair, that our families were mismatched. It was not intended to be done with any malice.”
Randi, wanting her family to understand that she embarrassed them on national television for their own good says, “Pat, I know you want to move out. Mel, I know you’ve always wanted to travel. Bobby, I thought this would be amazing because you wouldn’t have to worry about college. Mom and Dad, I just thought ‘What a great gift’ Financial security. I thought this was perfect.”
Bruce is still not on board. “This shouldn’t be about the money. This isn’t about the money. But go on Randi. I didn’t mean to interrupt you.” Ah, Parental Sarcasm! I know your tone well! And you were delivered with such a practiced hand!
Finally Steve can continue: “The next thing I’m supposed to say is, I’m not who you think I am. My name is not Steven Williams. I don’t work for an internet company. I don’t eat like a pig. I’m not a klutz. I’ve never had a burping contest before in my life.
“These people are not my family. Jimmy, though a nice guy, is not my best friend. My name is Steven Bailey. I’m a professional actor.
The look on Randi’s face as she begins to realize the joke was on her all along is almost a payoff for the turn from humor the show has taken the last few weeks. As her family tries not to laugh, Steve ices the cake. “I was hired to come here and meet you and be the most obnoxious, annoying fiancé ever.
I confess, I’ve been frustrated with this show. What started out as the funniest reality television dating show I’d ever experienced made an odd turn with the arrival of the Coy family. Though we tried, it became increasingly difficult to poke fun at the family, as we realized their reactions were basically normal, and indicative of the strong bond between them.
Perhaps Steve said it best, “When the Coys arrived, our story had to change. It was soon obvious that their love for Randi was so strong, they could not sit by and watch [her] make the worst mistake of their lives. So the story shifted. The Coys were great. They accepted me and welcomed me into their family, but they also had to voice their concerns. And that became the story of our show. The love of a family. And the bond that keeps them together.”
Yeah. I got no snark to give you.
Randi cries. Mom cries. Dad looks proud, in spite of himself. Steve tells the Coys that kind of love should be rewarded. And presents two checks - not for $250,000 apiece, but two for $500,000. One made out to Randi, the other to be shared among the rest of her family.
The family gathers around Randi giving hugs of love and support. Steve announces a video that will hopefully explain more. The family sees part of the first episode where Randi meets Steve for the first time and the plot is explained. They laugh at Steve’s attempts to drive Randi up the wall and the show closes with Coy family smiles all around.
The final credits reveal that Randi spent several weeks in seclusion with her family in Colorado. Randi reports that her family has forgiven her, ‘but they are going to be very frickin’ suspicious’ next time she brings a man home. She now divides her time between Arizona and Colorado. She plans to use some of the money to take her family to Ireland for her dad’s 50th birthday.
Thanks for joining us for this season of My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance. We hope you’ve enjoyed the recaps and are looking forward to a sequel. No. I don’t know anything. Except Fox is not one to pass up an opportunity to make a sequel out of a hit show. We’ll wait to see.
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