Why Love Island UK Received 781 Complaints in Just 4 Weeks

Love Island is no stranger to a little drama, but the eighth season of the U.K. version has viewers especially up in arms. Find out why so many people have been complaining.

By Daniel Trainor Jul 05, 2022 10:20 PMTags
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Love Island is getting plenty of hate. 

The U.K. version of the steamy dating show phenomenon, currently airing its eighth season, has already received 781 viewer complaints since its June 6 premiere, according to Variety

While Love Island is notorious for its hook-ups and addictive drama, most of the complaints, made to media regular Ofcom, have leaned in a more serious direction.

"According to Ofcom, viewers were concerned about bullying on the show," Variety reported, "contestants' well-being and mental health, certain contestants getting more screen time than others and the age gap between contestants on the dating show."

In particular, viewers have complained about the amount of screen time given to 19-year-old Gemma Owen, daughter of former England soccer star Michael Owen, with one viewer tweeting: "Michael Owen must co-produced this show, Gemma is getting bare unnecessary screen time."

In addition, the 19-year-old, who is also a competitive horseback rider, was paired with 27-year-old Davide Sanclimenti on the show, causing some viewers to be turned off by the eight-year age difference.

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While the uproar is palpable, it's nothing compared to a single episode of 2021's season seven that, according to Variety, received a staggering 25,000 complaints.

In the episode, contestant Faye Winter confronted fellow contestant Teddy Soares after Soares was seen kissing contestant Clarisse Juliette while Winter and Soares were paired together. Most of the complaints received by Ofcom were related to the way Winter confronted Soares. 

"We've received a high volume of complaints about last week's Love Island, which is consistent with a trend of growing complaints about high-profile TV shows," Ofcom said at the time. "We are carefully assessing the complaints we've received, before deciding whether or not to investigate."

No action was ever taken and Winter and Soares eventually reconciled, finishing in third place.


The latest version of Love Island USA, featuring new host Sarah Hyland and hopefully fewer viewer complaints, premieres July 19 on Peacock. 

(E! and Peacock are both part of the NBCU family.)

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