Love Island – the best trash TV has taken over our weekday nights for yet another summer. The show that notoriously transforms a bunch of attractive millennials into teeth whitening, tea detox Instagram celebrities. Love Island is essentially a reality dating show, where survival is based on being in a couple that is deemed compatible by the public. But why is everyone so obsessed with it?
Here in the UK, we love to watch the drama of the show unfold from the comfort of our couches and are constantly conflicted with our craving for the belief that true love does exist, and our doubtfulness of a simulation that is forcing unrealistically attractive people to forge fake relationships, and try and get with one another. It somewhat has a feel of the Sims 2?
Regardless of whether you are being filmed 24/7 or just living your day to day life, romance is never straight forward, but it seems that Love Island has formed some bizarre dating habits that we have become accustomed to.
Firstly, dating in a competitive manner is obviously not natural at all, which can explain the odd behaviour that is conveyed on the show, including the persistent ‘are you mugging me off?’ and ‘where’s your head at?’
In the real world, it would appear most people try and play it cool, and like the excitement of the chase. Whereas on Love Island the contestants are rather aggressive with their approach and extremely quick to tell someone they fancy them and mark their territory, or even move onto the next best thing in a couple of days.
As well as this cast are often left in hysterical tears or rages based on a ‘relationship’ with someone they have only known for a matter of weeks or even days in some cases.
There is definitely a massive importance placed on physical appearance in the show, particularly when participants are chosen to couple up based on their appearance. Multiple rejections and general betrayal within the show can prove to really take a hit on the cast’s self-esteem.
Love Island allows the public to have their own involvement with the show, which immediately forms a connection with its viewers. As well at this, the contestants are all of an age that will be relatable to its target demographic of young adults and primarily focuses on including aesthetically pleasing eye candy to make the show more engaging to watch.
The camera system is very much like Big Brother which can be used to capture noteworthy and controversial content and the post-watershed timing means the sometimes crude content often forms a large social media craze.
The beauty of Love Island is the fact it is like Russian roulette because you never know what is going to happen or what someone is going to say. The time delay and cropping of 24-hour footage to fit into a measly one hour TV session means that conversations and clips can be exploited to create drama when broadcasted.
Although there is no doubt a very shallow element to Love Island, the public wants to believe that there is romance the heart of the show and love a good happy ending.
We as viewers get attached to the cast as if they are ‘characters’ and start rooting for them to pair up with certain people.
The show was originally aired in 2005 and 2006 with a celebrity cast and was so popular the produced decided to relaunch it in 2015 with members of the general public, so the audience could resonate with them.
A particularly likeable element to Love Island is that it is not scripted unlike most reality TV shows, however, the producers still have tools like deliberately sending people on dates and certain tasks that are prone to create jealousy.
Young viewers want the show to feel real and are most likely to vote for contestants they feel are being genuine, which is why people who are relatable and honest succeed the most, such as 2017 Love Island favourite Camilla Thurlow.
According to Kem Cetinay who was on Love Island in 2017, the show doesn’t air on Saturdays so the participants get to have a day off at the beach and take their mics off. However, under no circumstances are they allowed to talk about anything couple or show related.
The show hosts a perfect combination of clashing personalities including your typical f*** boys, independent sassy women, hopeless romantics, divas, jokers, bullies, and those who are in it just for the money to create quality drama.
A key facet we have picked up on is that it is extremely refreshing to see men talk about their feelings publicly, whilst supporting and complimenting one another, and just generally appreciating one another’s man-hoods. Which is something that is not often seen in the media, and can be a leading example.
Now we have pushed aside the superficial angle of Love Island it is clear there are actually a variety of aspects that hook viewers such as themes of toxic masculinity, sexism, heartbreak, friendship and insecurities, all bringing light to struggles we can all relate to.
It is clear that troubles of the heart and friendships are all things we share in common and can empathise with, ultimately making it such a likeable show.
Let us know what you love or hate about Love Island!
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Images: Daily Mirror, Tellymix, Hello Magazine, Telegraph, BBC, Heat