I’m not sure what I was expecting, really, and maybe I shouldn’t have been so naive. But I genuinely thought that this upcoming series of Love Island, the winter edition 2020, was going to be different.
The ITV show came under fire last summer when they revealed their line-up - a host of size 6 - max. 10 women and men with six packs… They attempted body diversity by including Anna Vakili and painting her as the show’s ‘plus-size’ contestant - but in reality, Anna is a slim woman with a pancake-flat stomach and Kim Kardashian-esque curves. Hardly body diversity, let’s be honest.
A lot of body positivity and body confidence activists spoke out against the hit show, criticising bosses for failing to cast and show a representative sample of our current society and calling on them to be more mindful with their future selections.
Alas, the bosses either didn’t hear or just didn’t care, because the new line-up has been revealed, for the Winter version of the show. And guess what? It’s no better, perhaps even worse... All of the women are either small-sized or maybe curvy in an incredibly toned, curves-in-all-the-right-places kind of way. They look beautiful, of course, but they all kind of look the same.
This might sound like I’m being outspoken for no reason, or unnecessarily serious about a light-hearted TV show, but hear me out: Love Island is incredibly popular among a very young, and therefore, very impressionable audience who lives and breathes Love Island content for the entire time it’s on our screens. And only having people who look a specific type of way serves to perpetuate the idea that you need to be thin to be deemed attractive and worthy of love.
Fingers crossed the casting team takes notice this time, though I’m not going to hold my breath...