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Love Island fans were given unprecedented control this series by being given the chance to vote for who should couple up in the first episode.
While the new process was well received by most viewers, some fans immediately suspected that viewers would pair the Black contestants together simply because of the colour of their skin... and they were right.
Monday night saw Indiyah matched with Ikenna while Amber was matched with Dami, which led to a firey debate on social media.
One fan complained: "I knew the Black people would be coupled together. The public is so predictable."
Another viewer tweeted: "Typical of the public to put the Black people together. Do better guys."
A third chimed in and said: "Also, of course there is a lack of chemistry between the Black couples – they know they were lumped together based on race and mostly likely have no chance with any of the other white islanders. There is such an obvious divide."
Relationship expert Gifty Enright has weighed in on the results and despite praising the change to the coupling system in the first episode, she has explained why the public voting to couple up Black contestants simply because they're Black is 'lazy'.
i knew the black people would be coupled together. the public is so predictable #loveisland— loooooove island (@IslandLoooooove) June 7, 2022
Typical of the public to put the black people together🙄 Do better guys. #LoveIsland— NicGan (@NicolaG709) June 7, 2022
How did I know they’d put all the black people together loooool #LoveIsland— MS (@UniqueMerv) June 7, 2022
Also, of course there is a lack of chemistry between the black couples - they know they were lumped together based on race and mostly likely have no chance with any of the other white islanders. There is such an obvious divide. #LoveIsland— AJ (@auntieagy) June 8, 2022
She said: "The audience, Black or white, did what normal humans do, responded to their unconscious bias and used the contestants’ colour as a shortcut, rather than going a level deeper when it came to the Black contestants.
“When it comes to matchmaking, people are looking for things in common so matching the Black people together hits one commonality but that is not enough.
"The white contestants were not matched just because of their colour, other attributes came into play to determine whether they will be compatible or not.
"Matching the Black contestants together was just lazy.”
Some social media users defended the result by reminding everyone that it is not unusual to see Black couples together. “It’s not by force to set Black people together uno [sic],” said one Twitter user.
Another viewer wrote: “See now I can't decide if the public are just racist so they paired the Black people together or if they know that Black girls don't have a fair chance so they paired them together.”
i thought everyone wanted the black people together idk why everyone’s mad?? 😭 #LoveIsland— bekah (@itsbekah29) June 6, 2022
I can’t tell if I like the new format 🤔 like it’s better than the black women not getting picked but the public just put all the black people together randomly 🥴#LoveIsland— TR (@ForgotAboutTayy) June 6, 2022
see now i cant decide if the public are just racist so they paired the black people together or if they know that black girls dont have a fair chance so they paired them together 😐#LoveIsland— kemi is in her a levels era!! (@woahkemi) June 6, 2022
its not by force to set black people together uno. just saying . 🙂 #loveisland— vivii (@estheebabii) June 6, 2022
A third said: “Can’t tell if I like the new format. Like it’s better than the Black women not getting picked but the public just put all the Black people together randomly."
Someone else tweeted: “I thought everyone wanted the Black people together idk why everyone’s mad??”
Enright, who is Black and works as an empowerment coach, said while the new method of establishing the first couples for the series was a welcome change, the public's decision may not have given the Black contestants the best chance at finding love.
"The old ‘stepping forward’ regime was humiliating for the Black women because they were the last to be picked. So with this new method, they are at least saved from that humiliation but it doesn’t necessarily give them the best possible chance of finding love in the villa.
"To find love, people should be paired together because they are compatible, not because they are the same colour.”