爱岛 (Monday, 9下午, ITV2) returns, 然后. In a way, the series needed a Glastonbury-style fallow year: let the astroturf recover from a 10-week onslaught of wedged heels, let the pool rechlorinate back to a healthy pH and, most crucially, give Britain’s potential contestants time to repopulate. After the punishing back-to-back scheduling of the June 2019 summer season and the January 2020 winter one, ITV needed time to restock its supply of Kim Kardashian-shaped pharmacists and sweet-but-slow 20-year-old boxers. There are currently 30 到 40 future Love Island stars out there, agitated with pre-flight nervous energy, doing press-ups and plucking eyebrow hairs in various secretive mid-range hotel rooms, wondering how many handjobs they are going to give or receive this summer. Nature, 但它也是一个, is healing.
I suppose the question is: how will this season of “Lock people in a house until they become derangedly horny” play out after a year of the government locking people in their houses until they became derangedly horny? 出色地, to answer that question, 爱岛 scholars have been revisiting seasons three to six. At some point between 2017 和 2019, 爱岛 – a show that, once a week, makes contestants play some sort of gunge- or food-based gameshow task just so they can film their bodies jiggling around gleefully in slo-mo 4K – actually lost the concept of sex.
在里面 2017 系列 (Kem, 克里斯, Camilla), contestants were constantly fumbling under duvets or walking indiscreetly out of the shower together; 在 2018, the trend was turning, despite the electric presence of Megan Barton-Hanson, with winners Dani and Jack keeping their relationship chaste while on camera. 经过 2019 (Ovie, 琥珀色, Molly-Mae), Islanders were wise to the fact that if they were going to walk out of this with a million Instagram followers, a new fast-fashion line, and a bunch of fake tan sponcon, shagging in the villa threatened the delicate personal brand that would allow them to quit their gym job. But now it is 2021 and nobody single has legally had sex for 15 月. This could be the sexual equivalent of when they let tigers loose on gladiators.
但, after a year of being trapped in a house until we all went semi-slightly odd, do we want to watch other people do the same, only in incredibly tight jeans? 亲自: 绝对地, 是的. 为我, Love Island achieves something spectacular that no other reality show can match: a thoughtlessness as art; a chance to turn your brain off for 60 straight minutes. Do not expect innovation here: a girl with a double-barrelled first name will last five days then leave without saying a word; a lad who spent the last year getting a neck of tattoos will threaten to “go in there” and “mash up the villa” before swinging-and-missing with five consecutive women; a fun game where everyone stands in a line and passes an ice cube to each other without using their hands will lead to two people crying on a balcony.
Is it clever? 不. Is it fascinating? 是的. Is it a cornerstone of a certain facet of British culture? I am starting to suspect that it is. Love Island is back. Don’t overthink it too much and you’ll have the time of your life.