A comprehensive roundup of all the Love Islanders who identify as LGBTQ+
Icons only I fear
“A logistical difficulty” is the infamous way ITV commissioner Amanda Stavri described the inclusion of LGBTQ people into the Love Island format, but despite her widely condemned comment queer Islanders have still managed to get through the heteronormative net that has the entire show in its clutches. Where there’s a will there’s a way, and queer people exist even when they present “straight passing” enough for ITV to cast them on their show. With that in mind, here’s a comprehensive rundown of all the Love Island contestants who identify as LGBT or LGBTQ.
The late Sophie Gradon from season two spoke openly about being bisexual on the show – and before she quit the season she became the show’s first and currently only same sex recoupling.
Katie Salmon coupled up with Sophie Gradon in series two – becoming the show’s first and only female-female couple. Sadly, Katie said she received a lot of biphobic backlash after her time on the show. She said she felt unsupported by the LGBTQ+ community and that men were fetishising her sexuality, saying “They see it as a sexual thing. They think it’s entertainment for them. They’ll be like, ‘Oh, you like women as well, you like threesomes.'”
Megan Barton-Hanson came out as bi in 2019 – when she wanted to date both men and women on Celebs Go Dating. “I felt instantly liberated when I came out in such a public way in 2019 on Celebs Go Dating when I requested to date women also,” she said. “I was so excited as a bisexual woman from a small town as I had no clue how to find other bisexual or gay women myself.”
On the lack of LGBT contestants on Love Island, Megan said: “It’s quite a conservative show in the sense that it’s only set up for straight couples. I would love it if they did a gay season. That’s so complex with the re-coupling. It would be nice to see more diversity.”
After some particularly invasive questioning on GMB in 2019, Curtis Pritchard said he would not rule out dating men in the future but refused to put a label on anything. His sexuality is fluid and he doesn’t close anything off – as is his right, and shame on the interviewers on that day persisting he label it anything. Curtis said “I can never ever say what will happen in the future. I wouldn’t rule anything out.”
Amber Gill, the only LGBT winner of all the contestants on Love Island, confirmed last year that she’s into women and is now dating Jen Beattie, her footballer girlfriend who plays for Arsenal. Icon.
Sharon Gaffka, who appeared on Love Island in 2021, said the show cut out a conversation where she came out as a bisexual woman.“I had a conversation with Faye about it and she asked, ‘Are you bisexual?’. And I said, ‘It’s something I’ve explored but I’ve never been in a relationship with a woman.’ A lot of the conversations I had were about modern dating on the show were never aired, but I was very open about sexuality and being a mixed-race woman in modern dating.”
Love Island 2023 continues at 9pm on ITV2 and ITVX. 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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