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Reality TV

7 TV shows to fill the Love Island-shaped hole in your life

Well 9pm will never be the same again.

AFTER SEVEN WEEKS, Love Island wrapped last night, with Amber and Kem (‘Kember’, if you will) crowned the winners.


But, with the euphoria of young love, comes the crushing disappointment from the realisation that Love Island is now over another year.


But never fear! There are options when it comes to filling the void of 9pm – though nothing will ever live up to the bromance of Kem and Chris.

1. Love (Netflix)

If this Judd Apatow-helmed rom-com hasn’t been on your radar, now is the time to change that.

When his cheating girlfriend leaves him, people-pleasing nice-guy Gus (played by Paul Rust) moves into a trendy apartment complex inhabited by lots of college students. A chance encounter introduces him to wild-child Mickey (Gillian Jacobs from Community), also recently single.

Despite their differences, they’re drawn to each other – and the results are more interesting than they sound.

Netflix / YouTube

2. Married By Mom and Dad (TLC)

Would you let your parents choose The One for you? These people did, for whatever reason.

The synopsis reads: “The participants allow mom and dad to vet potential future spouses before their kids meet them for the first time.”

The real work then begins as each single gets to know the partner’s likes, dislikes, and everything in between.”

TLC / YouTube

3. Sun Sex and Suspicious Parents (3e)

If it’s the sunny surrounding you’re missing, this will make you feel like you’re right back at the villa – even though you were technically never there in the first place. I digress …

The premise is simple: parents follow their kids on holidays and watch what they get up to. A nightmare scenario, but we’re not living it, so it’s fine.

James5829 / YouTube

4. Ex On The Beach (MTV)

It’s Love Island minus all of the love, essentially.

Eight single guys and dolls enjoy a holiday in a paradise location, only for their exes to turn up and spoil the whole thing, as they seek revenge – or occasionally, another chance at love.

Still wildly popular after three years on air, it’s spawned some of the newer reality TV stars on the block, including Megan McKenna and Stephen Bear.

Trash TV at its … Eh, finest.

MTV International / YouTube

5. Big Brother (3e)

The final’s on Friday, so that gives you four days to catch up. Sorted!

It’s been a controversial series, with some housemates nabbing a share of the cash prize in exchange for earning the title of BB winner.

Also, no TV show does showmances quite like BB.

6. Celebrity Big Brother (3e)

Ok, so we all know this is the version of Big Brother people are actually interested in!

Kicking off on August 1st, famouse housemates rumoured to be entering Big Brother’s gaff include YouTube personality Trisha Paytas, Sarah Harding from Girls Aloud and, eh, Barry from Eastenders.

PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

Please God let it be true.

7. Love At First Kiss (TLC)

Fairly self-explanatory this, and just as cringe-worthy as you’d imagine – if not more so.

An individual goes beyond his or her comfort zone to kiss a total stranger, without introduction, to determine if one kiss can lead to a date in the real world and maybe even a long-term relationship.”


Some participants struggled to fully grasp the concept, mind – see poor Josh’s efforts below.

TLC / YouTube

Christ alive, I need a shower after that.

A life without Love Island is a little it leave it, but hopefully these will go some of the way in mending our broken hearts.

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