Being a maid of honor was always one of those things I knew I’d do…eventually. But when my soon-to-be brother-in-law proposed to my sister last December, that thing Future Me would theoretically do became a thing Present Me was actually doing — and like, right now.
It’s a great source of advice for both the realistic and emotional experiences of wedding planning.
That development freaked me the fuck out.
Not only did the pressure of showing up for one of my favorite people overwhelm me, but the stress of not knowing enough about the $70 billion+ industry she was wading into kept me up at night. How could I possibly give helpful, meaningful advice on a subject I have no practical experience with? Let alone when the stakes are this high for my loved one?
Enter The Wedding Coach, Netflix’s latest show to focus on matrimonial bliss. It’s a great source of advice for both the realistic and emotional experiences of wedding planning, with pearls of wisdom I’ve successfully used to make my sister’s first planning stages go smoother. (Truly, “shit out a choice” is the godsend you think it is.)
Hosted by comedian Jamie Lee, the fairly straightforward reality series follows frustrated fiancés in the days leading up to their weddings. She covers everything from decision making to family drama for all kinds of spouses-to-be. The result is a breezy and binge-worthy unscripted series, as heartfelt and endearing as the celebrations it captures.
Across six half-hour episodes, Lee, who authored the 2016 book Weddiculous: An Unfiltered Guide to Being a Bride, provides a helping hand and frank perspective on six celebrations. She’s joined by guest stars Mamrie Hart, Jon Gabrus, Matteo Lane, Alesha Renee, Punkie Johnson, and Fortune Feimster — all comedians and actors, who, as it turns out, are uniquely gifted at wedding planning.
“When you’re between spreadsheets, remember to get between bed sheets.”
From making time for a bilingual ceremony to dealing with some truly heinous wedding party members, The Wedding Coach and her team tackle problems big and small with love and laughter. It’s a crash course in not taking what’s ultimately a pretty silly tradition too seriously, but not minimizing the importance any given detail can have to the families coming together. It achieves the perfect balance of honoring the importance of a wedding and preventing the wedding from becoming a stress-inducing, life-sucking monster.
Prioritizing personal over perfect and functional over flawless, Lee’s wedding philosophy deftly meets the couples’ expectations within the limitations of what’s reasonably possible. For example, The Wedding Coach is happy to help a bride float in on a canoe; she’ll just want to know why it’s important to the couple and not some random expectation no one actually cares about. It’s a no-bullshit approach to the Big Day, full of wise gems for couples — like “When you’re between spreadsheets, remember to get between bed sheets” — as well as nuggets for supportive family and friends — like “This isn’t about you.”
There’s no shortage of wedding advice out there; I should know. But The Wedding Coach offers some of the best I’ve encountered. You get to see these tried-and-true strategies road-tested at actual weddings, and for this maid of honor, that’s a huge source of comfort.
The Wedding Coach Season 1 is now streaming on Netflix.
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