Guilty Pleasures: Love island

Several years ago I was sat in bed flicking through the TV channels for something to watch and I came across a scene of a couple of girls in bikini's sat on beds in the sun have a gossip, sipping on water bottles.

I stopped for a moment to listen to what they were gassing about, before I knew it I had watch the whole episode.  Now, I wanted to know what happened next so I watched it again the following evening. 
It suddenly started to dawn on me that this was the modern day Big Brother house. 
Back in the day I had watched Big Brother for a couple of seasons before the novelty wore off. But there was something different about this one. The people in Big Brother started to annoy me when each year they started to pick some ridiculous personalities for the ratings.

But this was a room full of personalities, judging each other on looks, with love and money (and Fame) on the agenda, and it just made people behave in interesting ways.

Now I like to people watch, so this was ticking a box for me. Soon enough I had watched the whole series and started to like the participants and couldn't wait to watch the next one. BUT I had not discussed it with anyone. Not even the husband.

I watched it in secret; my guilty pleasure.

So what's it all about?
If you have never watch it here is the low down. 

The show starts with 5 girls. Boys enter one by one on the first day and he picks who he wants to couple up with (that means they have to behave like a couple, date and get to know each other and sleep in the same bed) 

Sounds simple well, its not- if you get picked by someone that you don't like or get on with, life can be miserable, but the cash incentive makes people put up with all sorts which makes it an interesting watch.

Then you get the curveballs thrown with an odd number of boys or girls trying to steal a partner for themselves to stay in the game. That's when the wandering eyes start to appear.

Anyone left without a partner after a re-coupling gets evicted.

To make it even juicier they have in the past added in a second house and throw in an ex or two.

There's also treats like parties, a night in the hideaway, dates away from the house and game show type challenges.
We as viewers can also vote on the app and interact with what should happen next or to vote couples in or out and by the end of the 8 weeks the last couple standing get to share or steal the cash prize money- Object being that if it's true love you will share the money and the nation falls in love with the whole thing.(Everybody say Aaaahh!)

That's roughly about it. 

So back to me... The following year, 2 people at work mentioned it in a passing conversation. THANK GOD! I wasn't the only one watching trash tv and actually it wasn't trash, there was something intellectually stimulating about the psychology at work, the eye candy was just a bonus!
The year after that I managed to get my line manager, a couple of friends and my sister-in-law who all snubbed the show, well and truly hooked! 

We now all look forward to the meme's and the recycled snippets from the live shows sharing our views and judging them just like the rest of the nation that has been hooked. 

Not to mention the lingo that goes with it. (It's how I keep up with the young un's these days.)

Theres also the bro love of Chris and Kem- that was the only genuine relationship in the house that year.

Of course the series has grown so much they have commercialised every bit of it- the clothes by Pretty Little Thing and I SAW IT FIRST, the flights with Jet2Holidays, the merchandise (who has £15 to spend on a plastic water bottle???), even Primark started printing T -Shirts with phrases like 'You're my type on paper' . I have to admit, I did get one of those for myself, I guess get caught up in all the hype.

The contestants after the show get deals to do all sorts including radio shows, tv shows, and even put their name to fashion and beauty ranges. Love Island has rocketed into big business for what was seen as trash tv.

With the growth, it also has its pitfalls as a concept. Such as the mental impact on contestants from being thrust into limelight which has resulted in a couple of unfortunate suicides. There also been calls to see more real people with real bodies. I know, I sit there thinking I'm never going to look like that in a bikini while I munch through a bag of crisps.

Like with anything there are lots of criticisms to be had from the show. 

This years show started this week so it's not to late to jump on the bandwagon if you haven't already!

Love Island is on ITV at 9pm weekdays with catch up and extras on the weekend.


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