Picture the twists and turns of life commitments, be it work, family or a need to keep up with friends and social bookings. Our daily grind, although rewarding at times, can almost feel relentless - a never-ending rollercoaster of commitments and societal pressures. In this looping pursuit, we often forget something crucial: the human need to hit the pause button. Just to step off to the side-lines for a moment to escape the daily buzz can be a game-changer for our well-being.
With the Love Island Final set to be watched by over 5 million people, the remaining couples in the villa are inching closer to a potential win of £50,000, as well – of course – their one true love? After the whispers of love and emotion are declared, the winners are announced, the prize money is received and the Spanish dust settles, what happens then? Weel, for the contestants themselves, they are catapulted into a life of media management, meet and greets, and social media fame – but what happens to them and the 5 million people who watched their declarations of love for the world to see, hashtag, and comment on.
Amongst the sun, sea, and sponsorship deals, lies a villa in the heart of Majorca. A villa adorned with swimwear, sunscreen, and over 70 cameras watching the every move of a conveyor belt of contestants, heading to the summer hottest reality TV show. This ladies and gentlemen, is Love Island.
Love Island has been on our screens since 2015 and now beginning it’s 8th series, with around 36 contestants gracing our screens over the 8 week show. So, is Love Island just Gen Z’s using their time on the daily primetime show to gain media fame and followers - or is there an underlying social experiment behind the love searching singletons than meets the eye - absolutely.
The popularity of Love Island first of all is seen by the daily ritual of a 9pm primetime slots, whereby over 3 million people (ITV, 2022) watched the trials and tribulations, the love and laughter, the heart make and heart break of the opening episode for this years extravaganza. This 8 week reality shows may give the general public viewers an element of escapism from everyday affairs, watching the drama unfold with real people and real lives. So what makes this show so popular, and why do we watch it? What is the drive behind the storylines, is there more to it than just looking for love - and why are we so invested?
Dr Rachael Molitor