Aren't you just over it? The misogynistic, gross, narrative of "The Bachelor" & "Bachelorette" franchises? It's the same story every season: 25+ contestants fight for ONE man/woman to end up with at the end. Then, they're pressured to either get engaged or stay in a committed relationship after "winning" the season? After just nine weeks of limited face-time? Sounds completely insane if you ask me.
However, the UK's romance reality show, "Love Island", is an entirely different story. Here's the premise: When the first ten contestants arrive in the villa, they are coupled up with each other, which is done by stepping forward for the Islander you find most attractive. Over the course of the series, contestants can be re-coupled with another Islander, either by choice or not, at a recoupling every 4-5 days on average. At different points in the series, a new male or female may be introduced into the house. The contestant left single after a recoupling is booted off the Island. Islanders can also be voted out by the public who have the power to play Cupid by voting for a current Islander to go on a first date with a new contestant. The ultimate goal of the show is to remain in the villa, as the winning couple will have the chance to bag the £50,000 prize money which they can choose to keep or split with each other.
This is why I love it so much - while "The Bachelor/ette" has several dozen girls or guys fighting for the attention of one person, whereas "Love Island" allows for all contestants to couple up & find love. Still, it's not all rainbows 'n sunshine. Girls flirt with boys in a couple, boys flirt with girls who are in a couple, arguments break out, new islanders enter the villa to shake up the show. Although, it's never really catty. Yes, there's tension and awkwardness when things go awry, but all in all, the contestants are SO nice to one another. The girl power is so strong, and the guys all stick together. It's refreshing for reality TV.
Plus, throughout their stay, the islanders all play super flirty, fun, and creative group games. Past games have included "Snog, Marry, Pie", "Sexy Charades", "Flirty Jenga", and a heart monitor tracking dance challenge. It can get preeeettty competitive.
No wonder the UK's top television show has made it's way across seas to America! "Love Island" USA has made it's debut on July 8th, taking place in Fiji rather than the UK's location of Mallorca. Personally, I don't think it will quite get the ratings like the UK version does, it's just not the same. Viewers crave that cheeky banter, that genuine niceness, and those ADORABLE accents. We'll just have to wait and see!