Welcome to the British Bachelor in Paradise–but better.
Love Island is a dating reality TV show presented on ITV2 and hosted by Caroline Flack. It is currently in its fourth season and is an absolute phenomenon over the pond. When this series launched on June 4th, it landed a record 4,050,000 viewers–the most in the UK since the 2012 Summer Olympics. A new episode airs every night, except Saturdays, so the show and its contestants quickly take over all pop culture conversations. Read on to find out why the Brits love this show–and why you will too.
How The Show Works
The season begins with ten contestants in a paradise villa in Majorca, Spain (similar format to Bachelor in Paradise–a huge mansion with a pool, hot tub and tons of cameras). When the initial ten contestants enter the villa the men are instructed to select a girl to pair up with. The villa only has enough beds for couples to share so things usually get steamy fast. The next day, a new male contestant is introduced–sparking the reality tv fire. During the week, the contestants communicate with one-another through phones that only connect to others on the island and take place in competitions that test their relationships, mental and physical skills. During these challenges, they have opportunities to win dates outside of the villa or other privileges.
All couples are routinely given the chance to “re-couple” or swap their partners. Any Islander who remains single after a re-coupling is dumped from the island. With each lost contestant, the show brings in replacements so the numbers and ratios of male to female are always changing.
The public also has the chance to vote and have their pick of who stays and who goes. The couple that receives the fewest votes gets eliminated. In past twists, the Islanders themselves have also voted couples off the island. All votes are supposed to be based on who is perceived to be the most “real” couple–truly in love and destined to continue their relationship away from this reality tv paradise.
At the conclusion of the season, the three final couples gather for a live finale. The public again votes for who they believe is genuinely in love and the winning couple is revealed. Once the winning couple is announced, each member of the couple receives an envelope. One envelope is empty and the other contains a check for. The partner who holds the money then decides if they are truly in the relationship for love or money–as in if they actually love their boyfriend/girlfriend or if they successfully played everyone.
If they choose love, the two split the money. But if they choose money–the lucky individual gets the entire prize.
Kem Cetinay and Amber Davies won last season. After receiving the money envelope, Kem chose love and the two split the cash. The couple has since split. However, not all of the couples from last together have called it quits. Check out who is still going strong from the 2017 season here.
Many contestants are semi-famous before the show–such as Camilla Thurlow who had a brief fling with Prince Harry in 2014 and musician Marcel Sommerville, a former member of popular British hip-hop group Blazin’ Squad. Like the Bachelor franchise, all contestants rocket to Instagram-fame, grace magazine covers and even receive spin-off shows.
What You Need To Know About This Season
Since the start of the show, six contestants have been dumped from the villa and one last left “for personal reasons.” Out of the evicted, Hayley Hughes caused the biggest stir during her time on the show, as many believed she played dumb for the cameras and attention from the men. Hughes even went so far as to ask if Liverpool was a country and claim to not know what an earlobe was.
Twelve couples currently remain. In a surprise move, the show split the group up into two separate houses. This has led to major on and off-screen turmoil as couple Dani Dyer and Jack Fincham, who have been strong fan-favorites, were sent to different villas. Jack’s ex, Ellie Jones, was then introduced in the Casa Amor, the new villa to which he had been moved. As they were in separate villas, Dani and Jack were unable to communicate.
Producers edited a clip of Jack seeing Ellie arrive to only include him staring and repeatedly uttering “oh my god.” However, Jack also told men in Casa Amor how he has fallen in love with Dani. Jack even refusing to kiss Ellie in a mandatory challenge and sleeping outside to avoid sharing a bed with another woman. All these instances were omitted from the video when producers showed it to Jack’s girlfriend Dani.
Dani was heartbroken as the producers had led her to believe Jack had cheated on her with his ex. Since this episode’s airing, ITV has received over 650 complaints as viewers are furious and believe the show has unfairly manipulated its contestants.
On Monday’s episode, the contestants will be reunited in one villa once again. Hopefully, this will all be sorted out between Dani and Jack without unfair intervention.
At this point in the show, couples are still swapping partners, and there is still plenty of relationships to be formed, friendships to be ruined (or not) and tears to be shed. So whether or not you love a good cup of tea, Love Island is not a show to be missed.
How To Watch Love Island In America
You can catch every episode on Hulu as well as ITV2’s website–either through subscription or free trial. Hulu offers a month-long free trial while ITV2 offers a week-long free trial.