“An antidote to the times”: Kate Langbroek on hosting My Mum Your Dad

My Mum Your Dad

“The most astounding experience that I’ve ever had in television”

Nine’s new dating show, My Mum Your Dad, wraps up its first season tonight at 7.30 pm on Channel Nine and 9Now.

The series centre’s around a group of single parents looking for a second chance at love. Nominated by their adult children, 13 single parents enter a luxury retreat to meet, date and hopefully fall in love with another single parent.

The twist? Their kids are watching their every move, competing in challenges to win the chance to influence their parents’ dating decisions, and ultimately having the final say in their future love life – all without the parents knowing.

Making her reality TV host debut, Kate Langbroek takes on the role of “mother and psychologist.”

Mediaweek spoke to Langbroek about her role as host in the new series.

Falling in love on national TV

Over the past few weeks, relationships have formed, blossomed and been challenged. New parents have entered, and others have been booted out. The kids have watched every romantic, heartbreaking and cringeworthy moment from a hidden bunker.

Langbroek says she was surprised by how much the kids genuinely cared for their parents.

“I think I was genuinely surprised at how astute the kids were about the parents and how well they understood them – they really knew them so well in a way that surprised me,” she said. “I was surprised by their lack of cynicism. They’re 100% in on this, want it to work, and believe in love.

“And their belief that their parent deserves love was just gorgeous. Because I’ve got three teenagers at the moment, and I can’t see them rooting for me like that,” she joked.

Shane and Kristy

Shane and Kristy

My Mum Your Dad is an ITV format that has only been done in the USA, with Australia being the second territory to pick it up. The show touches on many emotional and personal topics, from past heartbreaks to the trials and tribulations of raising kids as single parents.

The series is an emotional journey from start to finish. For example, in one of the episodes, the parents share letters with their children. A moment that Langbroek describes as “the most astounding experience that I’ve ever had in television.”

See also: How Nine crossed generational lines with My Mum Your Dad

A new hosting gig

Langbroek takes on a maternal figure throughout the show, consoling the kids when emotions get heightened. In the first episode, we see Langbroek care for 24-year-old Tonya when a few of the Dads make nasty comments about her Mum, Marette.

When asked about these emotional situations, Langbroek said, “I wasn’t really conscious of what I was doing. It was more an instinctive thing, you see this young woman who’s just so deeply hurt, not on behalf of herself, but on behalf of her mum – I just have found myself instinctively responding to that.

“I have so much respect for people who are prepared to open themselves up not only to other people but in front of the nation. That’s an extraordinarily vulnerable position to put yourself in, and it takes a lot of guts.”

The show explores shows many sides of the parents, from their sex life, dating habits, past relationships and trauma.

“We always hear about how transformative love is, but when you see what happens to people when they fall in love, it is so magical. No matter how closed off they are, they open like a desert flower after rain.

“It’s just a really good reminder that everybody wants to be loved, and everybody needs to be loved. And sometimes when we most need love is when we least deserve it,” Langbroek said.

My Mum

The kids

Keeping it a secret

Langbroek says keeping the secret from the parents was challenging at times.

“As someone who’s new to hosting reality, you always had to be slightly aware of not ruining what was coming up or not giving away a secret or, for instance, revealing that I knew the kids.”

With the kids watching every moment together, the audience watches on as the relationships between single parents flourish and are challenged, as well as the relationships between the kids as well.

“I was curious about when those bonds would be tested, for instance, when the various parents pulled away from a relationship and started another one with someone else or how the kids would respond to that.

“You can see when people get territorial or jealous. Of course, no one’s at their best in those circumstances, but it was very interesting watching how the kids adapted to the changing romance of the parents.

“They are remarkably emotionally articulate and funny, grounded, lovely people. And they have been raised as such by single parents,” she added.

Your Dad

The parents

The crucial end-point of My Mum Your Dad is the finale’s Blessing Ceremony. The ceremony will see the children approving or disapproving of the match.

“It’s a very uplifting show that manages to have humour and cringe and a big heart, as well,” Langbroek said. “I think that’s very nourishing for people at the moment. So it’s kind of an antidote to the times while at the same time being a very modern show.”

My Mum Your Dad grand finale airs tonight at 7.30pm on Channel 9 and 9Now.

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