Who Are The Real Winners of Love Island?

I confess I am bereft, my guilty pleasure of being an avid viewer of Love Island for the past eight weeks is now ‘soo over’. No more series link, no more late night catch ups, no more snuggling up to watch the latest episode of the villa drama with my other half.

I’ve never watched any other TV reality shows like TOWIE , Made in Chelsea or Geordie Shore and have no chance of recognising any of the related ‘celebrities’,despite having worked in the entertainment industry (movies and TV) for over 30 years. I don’t know what drew me to Love Island in the first place but I was hooked from the get go. Despite the profusion of cosmetic help, ripped bodies and a host of size zero hotties, once the couples got together, split up, got together etc it was riveting viewing watching these young people develop relationships and friendships.

My friends and contacts contemptuously heaped scorn on me when I admitted I Love Island but I didn’t care. I thought Dani and Jack had real potential from the start. Others displayed almost machiavellian behaviour to get the girl or boy they wanted, or maybe just the attention – it is extraordinary how quickly people forget they are being filmed 24/7 so whenever they try to convince the others (or us) what they really said or did- it’s on tape luv.

I’ve enjoyed the total media snobbery about the series. On BBC 4’s Today programme this morning they vaguely mentioned the series and got the names of the winners completely wrong. The Sunday Times Culture has published astonishing ratings for the series, 4.31 million at its highest and instead of reviewing this cultural phenomenon of getting the much desired young demographic watching a regular TV channel, which all channels would kill for, they’ve pretty much ignored it.

Many of these new faces will get their 15 + minutes of fame, some of them will make a lot of money doing it. Brand endorsement, personal appearances, media interviews, game shows, other reality TV show, their own shows, social media endorsements…all they need now is a good agent. I expect Dani won’t be going back behind the bar and Jack has probably left his stationery days behind him.

As Jack might say himself, ITV has played a blinder. This is the fourth Love Island series and because the channel supported the series on its ITV 2 network, they will have made millions from sponsorship and advertising, as well as the power and kudos of attracting millions of viewers to a niche digital channel.

Funnily enough, my LI addiction more than paid off. Out of the blue I was contacted by a writer for Grazia magazine’s digital arm, asking me if I’d chat about whether, post Love Island, the participants would be more successful as a couple or as singletons. I asked her how she found me and it was on Google (note to self, find out what search term she used). As my PR experience crosses both fame, fortune and business she thought she’d hit the jackpot and I am delighted that she used one of my quotes in her piece!

It’s also been a win for the viewers, despite all the hype it lived up to its promise and delivered. The internet has been buzzing for eight long weeks, the broadcaster has been able to plug the series on numerous other programmes and we’ve been both entertained and emotionally stirred for 48 episodes, with more to come in post mortems and follow up. So scoff all you like, my friends, acquaintances and contacts, I’ve been down with the kids on Love Island and it’s given me greater insights into a generation I normally would have little or no contact with.