Love Island is full of bed-hopping, bum-flashing and boob-cupping - is it a reality TV show too far?


Chatting about orgies, bedhopping and having sex in front of the nation – Love Island is the summer’s most talked about show.

With a peak of two million viewers – more than Top Gear’s last episode – it’s been thrashing Big Brother and leaving the likes of BBC’s lavish drama Ripper Street trailing in its wake.

But while talk of “sticking it to” each other and “mugging off” has viewers glued, some ask: “Is it going too far?”

The concept is simple. Beautiful 20-somethings pick a partner from a line-up to couple up with – and share a bed with – until the next recoupling.

In four weeks, some contestants have shared beds with up to four people.

Oil rig worker Sam Gowland, 21, of Middlesbrough, had that many different couplings before leaving the Island.

Every contestant has had to kiss each other and demonstrate sex positions in a Maguluf-style party game. And two of the couples, Kem Cetinay and Amber Davies, and Dom Lever and Jess Shires, have had full sex – on TV.

It was 10 years ago that Big Brother first broke the big taboo when Michelle Bass left outraged viewers guessing about exactly whether she had or hadn’t.
Now, a decade on, there’s a whole show dedicated to just that. And it’s a hit.

Almost perfectly timed for comparison purposes, Blind Date – another show based on finding love – has just returned to our screens after 13 years.

On that, contestants make end-of-the-pier innuendos in a very nudge, nudge, wink, wink way. But on Love Island, we’re told it’s a prerequisite for Islanders to have had the full gamult of STD tests.

Some parents have admitted they’re finding it a little difficult to view.

Tyla Carr’s dad Johnny watched as his daughter coupled up with contestant Jonny Mitchell, minutes after he broke up with Prince Harry’s rumoured ex Camilla Thurlow – leaving her in tears.

It was watching model Tyla, 23, kiss on TV that was particularly hard.

“I must admit I had my head in my hands,” said dad Johnny, 58, of Surrey. “Like any other dad, she’s my little girl. You don’t want to have to watch it, and you certainly don’t like the idea of other people watching it.”

Paula Allen, whose daughter Gabby is coupled with former Blazin' Squad star Marcel, adds: “When they’re snogging I feel uncomfortable. I close my eyes for a minute and pretend that I am watching a film or something.”

But while parents cringe, others are taking it far more seriously.

Norman Wells, director of conservative moral campaigners Family Education Trust, is not impressed.

He has blasted the show saying: “True love involves self-giving and self-sacrifice, but Love Island knows nothing of such noble qualities. He adds: “It is particularly disturbing that so many teenagers are viewers.”

Sex and behaviour expert Dr Pam Spurr also fears the show could normalise promiscuous sex amongst younger viewers, as contestants can swap partners every recoupling.

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