The five-member marriage featured on Sister Wives appeared on Ellen this afternoon. Kody Brown and wives, Mary, Janelle, Kristine, and Robyn made one of their first appearances on the talk show circuit to answer questions about living in pluralism.
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If anyone is keeping up with this season's Big Love, the timing is truly uncanny. It seems that the Browns are developing a parallel, real-life plotline of their own: they have decided to "come out" to the world about the way they have chosen to live. After introducing them with a little, "why do they even need a husband" har har joke, Ellen quickly gets down to brass tacks about the way they actually function. With over half of all marriages ending in divorce, how can this family manage the fundamentals of marriage when those fundamentals are tripled (Spoiler! Quadrupled in the upcoming season). With 16 children and four houses between them, it's kind of mind-boggling that they haven't arrived on fire or wearing different shoes.
Kody calmly explains that they maintain a strict schedule: each night of the week is spent with a different wife and at a different home. Insert here, Ellen's second awkward, "so, uh, she had you last?" joke of the show. Finally, to make it work financially the family explains that they simply cut corners. They take advantage of hand-me-downs and second-hand stores, and also make sure to now "own a boat." Money-saving opportunities are everywhere! They seem nice and polite and tolerant, and honestly, slightly above average as far as normalcy goes when compared to some of their cohorts currently parading around TLC. But everything, I guess, is relative.