What did we as a society do to deserve the painfully abysmal Love Island 2022 reunion?
You’d struggle to find a worse way to spend an hour and a half
When Love Island ended on Tuesday, I wept and I wailed. Not because I was hoping and praying that Luca and Gemma would win, I’m not unhinged. Some tears were out of joy for the euphoric victory of God-Su and the Italian Snack, but the rest were because I have truly loved this series and the thought of it not being my nightly activity was too much to bear. Never fear, though, I thought – we’ve got the reunion on Sunday to look forward to! God-Su back on prime time! Big mistake. The Love Island reunion for 2022 was not only dreadful, it was so abysmal it managed to ruin the whole season in less time than Liam was in the villa.
It wasn’t a reunion, it was just Aftersun
First things first, let’s sort this out, it wasn’t a reunion – this was just Aftersun. It was filmed in the Aftersun studio, it had all the trademark horrors of a painful Aftersun hour and all the laughs, drama and charisma of a wet dishcloth. If you thought Laura Whitmore struggled to present a normal episode, lord knows she was all aboard the struggle bus for the reunion. And to add chaos to catastrophe, was flanked by the evil, evil Darren Harriott.
We want Andy Cohen levels of reunion drama. We want RuPaul screaming at Tammie Brown on the Drag Race season one reunion. Laura, if you can’t take the hosting heat, get out of the kitchen. The Love Island 2022 reunion, AKA an hour of Aftersun, was somehow worse than the hangover I was nursing.
Who the hell is Darren?
For Love Island 2022, it’s not just been Laura Whitmore’s presenting we’ve had to struggle through. This year, we have had Darren Harriott shoved down our throats with force. He has been on Aftersun every week and practically ran the entire reunion, I have honest to god never seen or heard of this man before. Has anyone? He’s come from nowhere, and is now everywhere. This would all be well and good if he wasn’t the most insufferable person I’ve ever watched on TV. And I’ve just spent two months watching Luca Bish.
You’d think that one of the main criteria of being a professional comedian would be the ability to get one of your jokes to land successfully, but Darren Harriott is living proof you can get a huge job and call yourself a comedian without making anyone chuckle. It’s quite the feat, really. Nobody laughed throughout the grief, rage and trauma of the Love Island 2022 reunion. Nobody even mustered a smirk.
Joel Corry and Becky Shrill
What contract and hold do the ITV overlords have on these two? I am convinced they are being kept in the villa basement to be dragged out whenever Laura Whitmore wants them to play some EDM with a “La, la, la” chorus. Joel Corry only has three moves: smiles, nods head, points fingers. Like a chart chasing android. Becky Shrill is never far behind him. They need a break from being the official Love Island composers. Just get God-Su on!
Why do the producers hate good TV?
It’s clear at this point that all the rumours about Summer and Coco’s big reunion bust up were true, but what’s even clearer is how desperate Love Island is to curate their own ideology of this show rather than present anything real to an audience. Love Island producers have spoken a lot about how they want their show to be “aspirational” – a phrase which here means, skinny, young and without an LGBTQ person in sight.
Because the show so eagerly wants to brand the Islanders as marketable, smily youths ready for a career of influencing, they’re quick to edit out anything that actually kicks off where anyone may rock the boat. Instead, we’re treated to a completely bizarre “music video” to One Direction’s decade old song What Makes You Beautiful that was secretly lip synced to by various Islanders across the series whilst they were in the villa. Antigoni at one point goes into black and white and performs Harry’s bridge like she’s Taylor Swift recording Folklore in the woods. The whole ordeal plays out like a promotional video for a Christian youth summer camp. Cult Island.
If you aren’t going to do a reunion properly, just don’t do one at all
Look, nobody was chomping at the bit for this. It’s not like the show ends and we all NEED a reunion – especially since this was filmed a grand total of three days after the show ended anyway. That’s like me calling going back to work on a Monday after the weekend a reunion with my colleagues – it’s simply not a big deal.
Give the Islanders space to get back to normal. Get presenters who will ask tough questions. Show us the drama. Stop with the impressionists, stop with Joel Corry, stop with the fake smiles. For the love of God-Su, just stop!
Love Island 2022 is available on catchup on the ITVHub. For all the latest Love Island news and gossip and for the best memes and quizzes, like The Holy Church of Love Island on Facebook.
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