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There’s Two Classic Romantic Comedies That Inspired Love On The Spectrum’s Formatting, And They Are Great Picks

 Steve on a date in Love on the Spectrum Season 2.
Steve on a date in Love on the Spectrum Season 2.

Among the best shows to binge on Netflix right now is the second season of Love on the Spectrum U.S. The popular streaming show follows the dating lives of real Americans living on the Autism spectrum with a sweet and good-hearted approach to what it can be like to look for love in the modern world. When CinemaBlend spoke to the show’s creators about the new season, they shared with us two all-time great romantic comedies that inspired the show’s formatting.

When we spoke to Cian O'Clery (Love on the Spectrum's director, showrunner, executive producer, co-creator) and Karina Holden (executive producer, co-creator), the pair revealed two beloved rom-coms that directly impacted the making of the show: 2001’s Amelié and 1989’s When Harry Met Sally. Let’s get into how.

Amelie
Amelie

How Love On The Spectrum Is Inspired By Amelié

While speaking to the creators, where we also got into how the participants’ social media fame has impacted Season 2, I asked O’Clery and Holden what was behind one comforting element of the show. Before the participants go on dates, Love on the Spectrum breaks down two likes and dislikes to introduce the new person. As O’Clery shared:

That was inspired by Amelié. I just really liked the way they introduced the characters in that. And it just felt like a really fun, interesting, different, new way of kind of getting to know somebody. And so yeah, that's where it kind of came from. And it's fun to shoot. Those are really fun days for us as a crew when we go and film some of those little likes and dislikes.

What a solid inspiration! The 2001 French-language film, which is among the best movies of the 2000s, is certainly injected with whimsy and romance that can be seen in Love on the Spectrum. O’Clery wanted to keep the series “lighthearted” and “interesting,” and the likes and dislikes certainly always add something special to each date sequence.

Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal in sweaters in When Harry Met Sally
Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal in sweaters in When Harry Met Sally

How When Harry Met Sally Influenced The Netflix Series Too

Love on the Spectrum is also inspired by Nora Ephron’s classic When Harry Met Sally as well. As Karina Holden told us:

The first time watching Harry met Sally and watching the master interviews with the real people sitting and actually being interviewed together about their relationship, the unmanufactured nature of that, and those master interviews where people are really honest and they speak about their relationships. I think that was the first time I ever saw that and I just love that. And I think that the way that we've kind of approached one of the things that a lot of reality series do is they constantly come back for these moments where people describe what's happening and you kind of go out of the action. But the series itself is very much anchored in the actuality of the moment. But, you do get these beautiful master interviews where the audience gets to know people really beautifully.

When it comes to telling love stories, it feels like a good rule of thumb is to be inspired by When Harry Met Sally whenever you can, because it’s just that good. As Holden explained, the movie’s master interview moments also impacted how they decided to handle the series’ formatting. As she explained, rather than following a straightforward documentary format that other dating shows implement, Love on the Spectrum opts to do interviews in the moment of things occurring, such as in the middle of a date or as they are about to go on one.

These sweet details certainly help make Love on the Spectrum such a sweet watch. The show is a great change of pace from other reality shows focused on dating, and it helps challenge stereotypes when it comes to the portrayal of the Autism community. You can stream the new season of Love on the Spectrum now with a Netflix subscription.