Love Island is getting it’s first full-blown Yankee version for American viewers. However, after watching a few episodes I have a lot of thoughts…
1. Where’s all the profanity?
What I quickly realised was that Love Island USA was going to be A LOT different from the original version and a big factor in this is the lack of juiciness. In the UK programming is way more lenient on what can be shown past the 9pm watershed. So while in the UK you’ll get footage of contestants shaving each other’s asses and calling each other c****, the US is far tamer. Any indecent material is strictly not allowed on television so watching Love Island USA just felt a bit too much like a kiddie version of the original.
2. There’s no banter
One of the best parts about Love Island is the laughs we get from watching the islanders piss about with their mates. Highlights from this season include anything that came out Maura’s mouth, Tommy trying to mount a horse and Chris take on the sexy builder challenge. The US version is definitely lacking this as all they seem to do is complain about being tired.
3. The usual Love Island lingo isn’t there and it’s upsetting
You don’t realise how much you miss the islanders using terms like “mugged off”, “pied” or “crack on” until you watch the US version. It’s just not the same.
4. I’ll give it credit for its diversity
Something that the UK really lacks is a diverse cast, we see the same type every year. The US version had a way more diverse cast from the offset which was really encouraging to see and had Twitter applauding the producers (although the body type diversity could use some work).
5. Why are they all so extra?
I was watching one particular challenge called Girl Power where the girls had to ‘rescue’ the boys, nothing unusual so far. What made me cringe excessively was how it felt like I was watching some weird superhero roleplay, one contestant, Alana, broke through a fake brick wall then announced her catchphrase “never fear Alana the banana is here! And this banana loves to be dipped in chocolate!”, then proceeded to do the worm around the obstacle course and cartwheel up to the boy. Although the UK version definitely also uses these cringe-worthy challenges there was something so awkward about the contestant’s attempts, it was pretty hard to watch.
6. What’s with the knock off versions of Ian Stirling and Caroline Flack?
For some reason, Love Island USA tried to find as close of a version as possible to the UK presenters Ian Stirling and Caroline Flack. It would’ve been much better if they had just found some charismatic American hosts to narrate the show in their own style rather than just producing BTEC versions of the UK presenters.
7. Why do the original US contestants look eerily like the UK cast?
This is another thing that the US version has seemed to just outrightly copy and it makes no sense. It’s impossible to deny the weird physical resemblances between the US & UK contestants, maybe the producers thought casting a similar-looking cast would make UK viewers more inclined to watch the show, but instead, it’s just left everyone a bit confused. This tweet below summarises what I mean: