These days, controversial 90 Day Fiance couples are wildly common.
In the show’s earliest seasons, however, they were rare.
One of the most horrifying, worry-inducing, age-gap-having couples on the show’s history came in Season 3: Mark and Nikki.
Now, longtime viewers can breathe a sigh of relief, because they are finally, finally getting a divorce.
To no one’s surprise, Mark Shoemaker and Nikki Mediano are filing for divorce after six years.
As reported by numerous outlets including In Touch Weekly, 64-year-old Mark filed to divorce 25-year-old Nikki on March 2.
The next day, he filed a motion to seal the divorce — a motion that was denied.
Infamously, Mark and Nikki had a prenuptial agreement as part of their marriage.
(While prenups are generally a good idea and have been included in many marriages in the franchise, it and so many other things rubbed Mark the wrong way)
Court records show that the prenup was submitted alongside the divorce filing.
Mark and Nikki appeared on Season 3 of 90 Day Fiance, the flagship series that launched an ever-growing number of spinoffs.
When contrasted with castmates like Loren and Alexei Brovarnik, viewers were truly not rooting for the couple.
In fact, Mark is so unpopular with fans that news of their divorce has been met with declarations of “she’s free!” across social media.
Viewers worried that Ella Johnson fetishizes Asian men know that Mark Shoemaker married two women from the same exact city in the Philippines.
Fans who think that Jenny Slatten is way older than Sumit Singh know that Mark and Nikki’s age gap far outstrips theirs.
And folks who call Big Ed Brown “Big Pred” … well, they’re still making some points, but Mark creeped them out, too.
The fact of the matter is that Mark was 58 years old at the time when he wooed and married Nikki.
Nikki was 19.
19-year-olds are adults, but also teenagers.
To be honest, most of us recoil at the idea of a 19-year-old marrying anyone, let alone a man 39 years their senior.
Mark, the owner a piano rental store, had also done the K-1 visa process before.
In the 1980s, he had married a woman from Cebu, Philippines.
Nikki and Mark connected through a dating site. She was also from Cebu.
At 19, she was two years younger than even Mark’s youngest daughter.
Upon seeing that Mark proposed to Nikki with an improvised zip tie instead of a ring, some fans quipped that it was symbolic of how predatory this felt.
Mark was well aware of how viewers felt about him.
In fact, he filed a lawsuit in 2017, accusing TLC and the show of character assassination in terms of his on-screen portrayal.
The court tossed out Mark’s lawsuit.
Fans are not the only ones who are neither surprised nor unhappy about Mark and Nikki’s split.
Mark’s daughter, Elise, has made her feelings clear using TikTok, also hinting that people could look up court records to follow the divorce, and possibly more.
Perhaps there is further information that will come out during this process.
So far, however, we haven’t heard directly from Nikki.
Since Mark’s filing indicated that they still shared the same address, perhaps that will change after they have separate residences.
That said … maybe not. Not all 90 Day Fiance alums are eager to speak to fans, especially if they have faced backlash.
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