It’s Sunday, 10.35 pm, and I am utterly, utterly exhausted. The Love Island 2018 final has just finished and a long sigh of relief exhales from the very bottom of my lungs. But I don’t feel sad or even disappointed. I feel relieved.
Not everybody was as engrossed in Love Island as me. A man tasked with writing 8,000 words per-week on the likes of Grace Wardle and Dean Overson, I know, I need a pay rise.
But for many members of the U.K public – 4.1 million to be exact – Love Island 2018 proved an addiction.
Addiction isn’t a good word.
An extended Love Island season saw the energetic contestants shacked up for 59 days in total. That’s a week longer than in series three, which was seven days longer than series two. You get my drift.
The benefit of this relentless focus came in the form of character development. Contestants who were thrown into the villa on day one were given added time to display their true colours, with crumble or flourish the two given options.
Take Dr Alex George, for example. He would have left the villa a knight in shining armour should the series have come to an earlier close. God bless the entrance of Alexandra Cane.
Hell, looking back at the finalists – Laura Anderson, Dani Dyer, Jack Fincham – you’d say that the winners were those whose personalities never changed or faltered.
They were real.
On the flip side, missing a summer Love Island episode meant that your office chat became as retro as a Nokia 3310. Miss a whole week, and you were better off forgetting about the show altogether.
A tiring 39 different contestants exploded through the villa doors, either hollering “wassup” like it was a 2006 Budweiser commercial or cooing “hello boys” in a sassy and seductive manner. It was all a bit too much.
Yet, this character overload, combined with scripting, manipulation, re-filming and questionable backstories, is exactly why ITV produced record-breaking figures.
There is only one direction for the future of Love Island, and it’s a charge that will hook in new viewers while ratting out the brave few who are unwilling to let reality TV dominate their everyday lives.
It’s a case more. More contestants, more episodes, more storylines, more memorabilia, more drama, more more.
From mobile games to clothing, tweets and common slang, you’re either part of this exhausting Love Island culture or not.
Realistically, Love Island 2018 was rubbish. But who actually has the guts to walk away?