Shannon was a sacrificial bikini babe for our drama-loving selves (Picture: ITV2)
If Love Island didn’t dump Shannon Singh in last night’s episode it would have well and truly spawned the end of my attention span for this year’s series.
I said what I said.
Much like so many others I see waxing lyrical about the model on Twitter, Shannon is a babe with a legend personality, or so we saw, to boot. She would have been the reason I’d have finally downloaded the damn app to vote this year.
But, in a cruel twist to the series that was kicking off with a yawn, last night I spat out my after-dinner mint when Shannon, who had cemented herself an early favourite with her no-nonsense attitude, was left high and dry after bombshell Chloe Burrows decided to couple up with Aaron Francis. Shannon was single and therefore immediately booted from the villa.
But, and here is where I land a controversial hot take, I like that Shannon got chucked out. I mean, I don’t like that it was Shannon, but something had to happen, you know?
It’s not the first time viewers have called a Love Island line-up boring, so there really is no excuse for the first lads and lasses to skip over the lush grass of the villa in their Adidas and espadrilles to not be absolute firecracking telly gold.
Iain Stirling can’t be the only entertaining thing about that show, as entertaining as he is. I needed pizazz and controversy and that ‘oh my gawwwwd’ in the voice of Janet from Friends moment.
Am I too hasty in demanding such a ballsy move from producers only three episodes in? Probably. But look around at the conversation centred on Love Island 2021 and this year’s roll call of contestants looking for a Boohoo contract, sorry, I mean, looking for love…and a Boohoo contract.
They’re lacking that certain something, aren’t they? In years gone by we’ve had the likes of Olivia Attwood sparking up the fire pit, Nathan Massey’s gift of the gab and Meghan Barton-Hanson just being Meghan Barton-Hanson. This year, albeit only a few episodes in, I can’t see any resemblance to the kind of fiery Islander craic we’ve been absolutely gagging for, for the past 18 months.
Until Faye called Brad the C-word in the final moments of last night’s episode, Shannon’s booting was the closest thing we had to experiencing a mildly controversial Islander moment in a show that is historically known for giving us the goods from the get-go.
So the fact producers, in that split moment between Chloe picking Aaron, chose not to call off the whole dumping of the jilted Islander and Shannon was sent packing before even having a chance to do a load of washing has given me hope we’ve got some red hot drama coming.
The Islanders trying to open the champagne was a highlight, which says something (Picture: ITV)
They’re taking no prisoners. They don’t give a f**k.
I’ve quoted her once, I’ve quoted her twice, but in the mighty words of Pam from Gavin and Stacey, ‘It’s the drama, Mick, I just love it’.
I still think about the massive blow-ups between Islanders, like Olivia and Chris Hughes, or Olivia and Montana Brown, or Olivia and Sam Gowland. And it’s often for no reason other than the fact a bunch of twenty-somethings with loads of hormones coursing through their veins and a rationed supply of cava are going to make fireworks happen.
Yes, I know we’re only early days and there is sure to be so much more brilliance to come (she says hopefully), but when we’ve been starved of any sort of non-pandemic-related drama for the better part of a year, Love Island needed to start with a bang. Be it sexual, literal, a fricken sparkler hanging off a champagne bottle none of the women seem to be able to open, I don’t care.
I just need more than what the current crop of Islanders were offering up, toe fetishes or not, and, sadly, Shannon was the collateral.
I think of her wistfully as the sacrificial bikini babe who took one for the team in order to make our cold hearts, deprived of the summer Mallorca sunshine, feel something.
Do I want her to head back into the villa? Heck yes I do, but not yet. Send her back in when there is some more drama afoot. Another glamour model clamouring for the lads’ attention. A Casa Amor moment. I don’t know, I’m not a producer, think of something.
Bloodthirsty? Mate, we don’t tune in to watch the women plait one another’s hair. The friendships of Love Island are a delightful side dish to the main course of malevolent mayhem and I’m OK in admitting that.
Think not of this as some hit on the #BeKind-ness of the past 18 months. In fact, the first few days have shown this message is more relevant than ever with Chloe’s family putting out a plea to stop people from sending death threats.
I don’t condone this abhorrent behaviour all in the name of a ruddy reality show. ‘Fans’ should never threaten or bully any of the starsAnd I don’t actively want producers to turn the lives of these Islanders upside down all for a giggle from viewers more so than the literal premise of the show already does.
What we need is entertaining, not anything that leads to islanders receiving even more hate than they do.
What show bosses should know is that we don’t want the same formula that has been presented to us before. They may have failed some fans on the body diversity front, so we at least deserve the sparks pool-side.
We need something to pique our attention and to give us something to truly root for, for want of a better word, and, if that means getting rid of a fan favourite before she got her first proper snog in order to remind us what this show is capable of doing then bring it on.