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Love Island 2021: People Are Calling For LGBTQ Contestants

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Love Island 2021: People Are Calling For LGBTQ Contestants

Love Island fans celebrated on Monday as the series made its long-awaited return to our screens.

While the new islanders were welcomed into the Love Island universe with open arms, viewers have renewed their calls for more LGBTQ representation on the dating show.

The debate was reignited after ITV commissioner Amanda Stavri spoke to Radio Times ahead of the show's return about the possibility of having LGBTQ contestants, saying: "In terms of gay islanders, I think the main challenge is regarding the format of Love Island.

"There's sort of logistical difficulty, because although Islanders don't have to be 100 per cent straight, the format must sort of give [them] an equal choice when coupling up."

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An ITV commissioner said gay islanders would bring 'logistical difficulties (Credit: ITV)
An ITV commissioner said gay islanders would bring 'logistical difficulties (Credit: ITV)

The format for Love Island sees around 10 men and women coupled up together with one or two extra 'bombshells' to cause friction between the couples. Each week the islanders must re-couple, usually in a pair with the opposite gender, to avoid being dumped from the island. The islander who is left single must leave the villa immediately.

Taking to Twitter this week, viewers have aired their disappointment that the 2021 failed to include contestants from the LGBTQ community.

One Twitter user said: "Okay but can we get some gay people on shows like Too Hot To [Handle] or Love Island cause..."

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"Man I thought Love Island said they were gonna have LGBT contestants this year," one fan tweeted.

Megan Barton-Hanson came out as bisexual after she left the villa (Credit: ITV)
Megan Barton-Hanson came out as bisexual after she left the villa (Credit: ITV)

While a fourth person said: "Why is there never a gay relationship on "#LoveIsland".

There has been one same-sex couple on Love Island with the late Sophie Gradon and Katie Salmon in 2016. Megan Barton-Hanson in 2018 came out in 2019 as bisexual.

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Sophie Gradon and Katie Salmon coupled up in 2016 (Credit: ITV)
Sophie Gradon and Katie Salmon coupled up in 2016 (Credit: ITV)

Social media expert Harvey Morton, who is also a member of the LGBTQ community, said he would love to see a more diverse lineup because Love Island has a large LGBTQ following and it's important for everyday viewers to be able to relate to who they see on screen.

Harvey told Tyla: "I'm sure I'll be hooked [to the show] throughout, but I think it's important for everyday viewers to be able to relate to who they see on screen.

"I have no doubt that the show will be a huge success, but I wonder how long Love Island's diverse demographic will continue to tune in for if viewers don't see themselves represented on-screen."

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He also reacted to the comments from the ITV commissioner, calling it "baffling".

He added: "I'm a huge fan of Love Island, and I have nothing against this year's contestants, I'm sure they're lovely, but it's unacceptable that Love Island producers aren't open to changing the format of the show in order to make it more diverse.

"This is something that viewers have been crying out for over the last few years."

Love Island is on weeknights at 9pm on ITV 2 and ITV Hub. The episodes are available to stream on BritBox the following morning.

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Can't get enough of Love Island? Join our Facebook Group - Love Island Obsessives - and keep up to date with the latest drama.

Featured Image Credit: ITV

Topics: TV and Film, Love Island

Gregory Robinson
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