Love Island 2021: The most controversial year yet? From record-breaking Ofcom complaints to gaslighting accusations and vile racist trolling – take a look back at the show’s biggest scandals ahead of final
- Latest Love Island news and updates from the Series 7 contestants right here
The seventh series of Love Island comes to an end tonight, with the final four couples battling it out for the £50,000 cash prize and winning title.
Islanders have come and gone over the past seven weeks and 2021’s instalment of the hit show has proved to be one of the most controversial, Faye’s spat with Teddy – racking up a record breaking 24,763 Ofcom complaints.
With just hours to go until Love Island crowns its 2021 winners, MailOnline takes a look back over some of this season’s biggest scandals…
Finale: With just hours to go until Love Island crowns its winners, MailOnline takes a look back over some of this season’s biggest scandals..
RECORD-BREAKING OFCOM COMPLANTS
This year’s Love Island saw a record breaking 24,763 Ofcom complaints over Faye Winter’s expletive-filled row with Teddy Soares.
The incident took place earlier in August when Faye, 26, let rip at Teddy, also 26, in a furious rant after watching a clip of him in Casa Amor.
The video, shown during the islander’s Movie Night challenge, saw Teddy tell fellow contestant Clarisse Juliette that he was ‘sexually attracted’ to her.
Faye’s rant – branded ‘horrendous’, ‘abusive’, and ‘gaslighting’ by fans of the show – resulted in the most expletive-ridden episode ever, with reports that contestants swore 125 times, while Faye is said to have said ‘f**k’ 57 times.
And in the aftermath of the explosive scenes, Ofcom confirmed the episode received nearly 25,000 complaints.
Record-breaking: This year’s Love Island saw a record breaking 24,763 Ofcom complaints over Faye Winter’s expletive-filled row with Teddy Soares
Letting rip: The incident took place earlier in August when Faye, 26, let rip at Teddy, also 26, in a furious rant after watching a clip of him in Casa Amor
This series previously saw a high of 4,000 complaints following the episode in which Faye was shown a postcard which suggested that Teddy had cheated on her, with viewers fuming that it was ‘misleading’.
Elsewhere, the show was hit with more than 1,500 Ofcom complaints after Danny Bibby’s entrance in the villa in July.
The plumber, 25, from Manchester has been this series’ most controversial contestant with viewers calling for him to be removed from the show after a historic Instagram comment where he used a racial slur was unearthed.
Danny’s father Richard had to quit Instagram after 1,081 viewers complained to Ofcom about the episode on July 15, in which the islander entered the villa.
Danny apologised for his actions from the villa, saying he ‘meant no offence’ and has ‘learnt from his mistakes’.
More complaints: Elsewhere, the show was hit with more than 1,500 Ofcom complaints after Danny Bibby’s entrance in the villa in July – after a historic Instagram comment where he used a racial slur was unearthed
ACCUSATIONS OF GASLIGHTING
This year’s Love Island was also at the centre of more than one gaslighting row.
Following Faye’s explosive outburst at Teddy, viewers accused the lettings manager of gaslighting – a form of psychological manipulation in which a person makes their victim question their sanity and reality.
Chris Hughes, who came third in the show in 2017, took to Twitter, saying: ‘Emotional abuse is the worst. There’s no nastier trait than gaslighting, it can literally ruin you in so many ways.
‘In my opinion gaslighting is the most emotionally abusing thing you can do. It leaves you feeling numb, weak and helpless.’
Outburst: Following Faye’s explosive outburst at Teddy, viewers accused the lettings manager of gaslighting – a form of psychological manipulation in which a person makes their victim question their sanity and reality
Twitter: Following Faye’s explosive outburst at Teddy, Chris Hughes, who came third in the show in 2017, took to Twitter, saying: ‘Emotional abuse is the worst. There’s no nastier trait than gaslighting, it can literally ruin you in so many ways’
Aaron Francis was also the subject of gaslighting accusations after he cut short his romance with Sharon Gaffka, labelling her ‘too fiery’ for him.
Sharon, 25, had gotten into an argument with Hugo Hammond after he said he didn’t like ‘fakeness’ in women, prompting Sharon – who has had a boob job – to voice her issues with PE teacher Hugo’s comment.
In the wake of Sharon’s comments, Aaron told her he couldn’t see their relationship working in the long term, leaving Sharon visibly upset.
‘Too fiery’: Aaron Francis was also the subject of gaslighting accusations after he cut short his romance with Sharon Gaffka, labelling her ‘too fiery’ for him
Fans took to Twitter to slam the events worker, convinced his behaviour was a ‘red flag’ and manipulative.
‘When a man uses ”red flags” as an excuse to dump someone when they just don’t like someone’s personality or opinions = manipulative/gaslighting, Aaron. Just be careful!’ wrote one.
Another added: ‘It’s really uncomfortable to watch Aaron make Sharon out to be a villain. It’s so dark and manipulative.’
But the series’ most serious accusation of manipulative behaviour was aimed at Danny, with charity Women’s Aid accusing him of ‘gaslighting’ Lucinda Strafford, who chose to couple up with Aaron over him, despite his best efforts.
Outrage! Fans took to Twitter to slam Aaron at the time, convinced his attitude would cost him a place on the show
Danny was vocally annoyed when Lucinda ‘ignored him’ to speak with Aaron, with Women’s Aid saying they thought Danny’s behaviour demonstrated ‘possessiveness and manipulation’.
Teresa Parker, Head of Media and Communications at Women’s Aid said: ‘Our team at Women’s Aid watched Danny and Lucinda’s relationship develop and became increasingly concerned with his behaviour towards her on screen.’
She went on: ‘Including what looked like gaslighting, possessiveness, and manipulation.
‘This is clearly not what a healthy relationship looks like, and these are all tactics used by perpetrators of abuse.
‘Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse which makes someone question their perception of reality and can be used to confuse, exhaust and control the victim.’
They added: ‘More widely, coercive control, which is a persistent pattern of controlling, coercive and threatening behaviour, has been a criminal offence since 2015 – you do not have to be hit to be abused in a relationship.
‘We urge the producers of Love Island to recognise the signs of abusive behaviour when it is happening on the show, as this is not the first time it has happened.
‘Abuse should not be used for entertainment, and producers need to know when to step in.’
Gaslighting: Love Island was also at the centre of more than one gaslighting row. The series’ most serious accusation of manipulative behaviour was aimed at Danny, with charity Women’s Aid accusing him of ‘gaslighting’ Lucinda Strafford
RACIST COMMENTS AND TROLLING
Danny’s father was also forced to apologise on his behalf for his use of the N-word in a historic Instagram comment.
Soon after the Wigan plumber entered the villa, fans delved into his Instagram and sourced the comment made in 2019.
His father Richard said last month: ‘Danny does not have a racist bone in his body and there were no racist intentions to this post. I absolutely apologise on his behalf for the offence this wording may have caused.’
The comment in question, written 85 weeks ago when Danny was 23, sees an Instagram account which appears to be Danny’s responding to a fellow Twitter user, who greets him with: ‘Champ’.
In response, the tattooed hunk’s account replies: ‘My n****’.
When contacted by MailOnline, a representative for Love Island said: ‘Earlier today we raised our concerns with Danny regarding a historic social media post. He wishes to make the below statement:
”I’d like to take the time to apologise to anyone that may have taken offence to my inappropriate remark.
”I never meant anything malicious by this comment at all. I am not a racist person and it’s unacceptable language and ignorant.
”I meant no offence and feel like I have really learnt from my mistakes and will never use that word again. I am a kind loving person and hopefully you get to see that in the show.”’
Weeks later, contestant Priya Gopaldas’s family and friends called out the ‘racist comments and trolling’ she received while in the villa.
Medical student Priya, 23, sent shock waves through the villa earlier this month when she chose to couple up with Brett Staniland over Matthew Macnabb, leaving fans unhappy with her decision.
In the wake of the recoupling, Priya’s family wrote: ‘Morning all. We understand everyone has their own views on what happens on the show.
‘However we need to remind you guys that racist comments and trolling is unacceptable!
‘Please remember to be kind. Thank you to all the lovely messages that have been sent supporting Priya. Priya’s gals xxx.’
Awful: Priya Gopaldas’ family and friends running her social media accounts called out the ‘racist comments and trolling’ she has received as a result of her decision to recouple with Brett instead of Matthew
Priya’s family’s post came just weeks after Kaz Kamwi’s family revealed that she had also been the target of vile racial abuse on social media.
A note appeared on her Instagram earlier in August, written by her loved ones, hitting back at those attacking the reality personality while she is oblivious inside the villa in Majorca.
They posted: ‘Morning guys. Kaz’s family and friends here. We understand that a lot of you love watching the show and that people will have differing opinions.
‘However, this does not excuse the vulgar racist abuse we have been receiving on her account!’
They ended things with: ‘Please remember to always #bekind’
Attack: Love Island’s Kaz Kamwi also received ‘vulgar racist abuse’ on her Instagram account, her family revealed
CONTROVERSIAL CHALLENGES AND THAT ‘FAKE GIRLS’ ROW
The show also kicked up a Twitter storm after Hugo remarked during a villa challenge that he disliked ‘fake girls’.
Asked to list their ‘turn offs’ in a partner, Hugo incurred the wrath of Sharon as well as Faye when he described his ‘perfect type’ as: ‘Leggy blonde. Not fake.’
‘That word keeps getting thrown around, doesn’t it?’ Faye seethed in response.
Realising he’d upset some of the islanders Hugo insisted: ‘I didn’t mean anything malicious did I?’
Sharon fumed: ‘I think I was just annoyed as a mate, I respect him enough to say to him, what you’re saying is upsetting me.’
Hugo later explained: ‘I just didn’t mean to upset anyone, that’s the last thing I wanted.’
He burst into tears over the upset caused, grovelling to Sharon and Faye later by the fire pit, who ended up forgiving him.
Not impressed! Faye and Sharon [L-R] were branded bullies for making Hugo cry
‘Poor Hugo!’ Hugo found himself in hot water when a throwaway comment saw Faye and Sharon fuming at him – making him cry
Love Island’s Line of Booty challenge also proved controversial, with viewers upset that Hugo was left out of the competition, which saw the girls dressed as sexy police officers before picking a guy of their choice to interrogate, seduce and lock in ‘jail’ in sizzling scenes.
However, the game made for awkward viewing as not one girl chose PE teacher Hugo, who was left to watch from the sidelines, with fans hitting out over his humiliation.
One wrote on Twitter: ‘Humiliating someone on national television isn’t entertaining.’
‘If Hugo gets left out one more time I’m ringing Ofcom’ shared another disgruntled fan.
Left out: Love Island viewers revealed they planned to complain to Ofcom over the treatment of Hugo in the Line of Booty challenge
Love Island 2021 – Meet the contestants
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Which Love Island couples are still together?
LOVE ISLAND 2021: MEET THE CONTESTANTS
Name: Sharon Gaffka
Occupation: Civil Servant – Operations Lead for Department of Transport
Who is their type on paper? ‘I tend to date someone who is taller than me, even though my last long-term partner, he was actually someone who was shorter than me.
‘I’m quite an intellectual person so I want someone who can kind of match that.’
Name: Aaron Francis
Occupation: Luxury Events Host
Who is their type on paper? ‘I need someone that is passionate about what they are doing – from scientist to anything – you can tell when someone is speaking about something and they are actually smiling while they are talking. I love that.
‘I don’t like when people are doing a job just to make money and then they kind of just live for the weekend. Especially because I work on the weekends.’
Name: Liberty Poole
Occupation: Nando’s Waitress and Marketing Student
Who is their type on paper? ‘So I like tall, alpha male, confident, a cheeky chappy sort of guy.
‘But obviously that’s always usually combined with player types, which is where I go wrong. So I am trying to change my ways and go for more of a nicer guy that is going to treat me right.’
Name: Hugo Hammond
Occupation: PE Teacher
Who is their type on paper? ‘I’ve been single for a while now. With the current climate, it’s been really hard to get back into dating.
‘I saw it as an opportunity to have an amazing fun summer and put myself back out there.’
Name: Liam Reardon
Are you competitive? ‘I am competitive to a certain extent. I’m not over the top. It’s always nice being a winner. If I’m in competition for a female, I want to try my best, but I won’t go too far out of my way. If she liked you that much she wouldn’t have to make a choice.’
Name: Jake Cornish
Occupation: Water Engineer
Who is their type on paper? ‘Looks wise, always gone for blondes. But for me, the main thing is having respect and having good fun, and someone who will be loyal to you…
‘I’ve had messages from girls that have got boyfriends and husbands. This is why I don’t trust anyone. Someone who is loyal really. But when I’m single, I like having a good time!’
Name: Kaz Kamwi
Occupation: Fashion Blogger
Who is their type on paper? ‘I like meeting new people, I’m ready to be in a relationship. Why not be in a place where people are looking for the same things as me?’
Name: Chloe Burrows
Occupation: Financial Services Marketing Executive
Who is their type on paper? ‘I like a good build. I go to the gym. I want someone who is funny. Really funny and caring and will do nice little things for you.’
Name: Faye Winter
Occupation: Letting Manager
What is her type on paper? ‘Someone that will put me in my place. Someone that makes me laugh. But also someone that takes my banter. I’m like a five-year-old in a playground, if I like you, I will make a mockery of you and laugh and joke. That is my really terrible flirting skills. I need someone who can take that.’
Name: Rachel Finni
Occupation: Luxury travel specialist
Why did you sign up for Love Island? I’ve scraped the bottom of the dirtiest barrels, that’s how I describe my dating life. So I thought “why not? Let’s apply. If it happens, it happens”.’
Name: Lucinda Strafford
Occupation: Online fashion boutique owner
Which boy do you have your eye on? I really fancy Brad. And then possibly Liam. But obviously I’m open to getting to know any of the other boys.
AJ (Andrea-Jane) Bunker
Name: AJ (Andrea-Jane) Bunker
Occupation: Hair extension technician
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I’ve had the worst luck with men. I feel like this is the one thing I haven’t tried. I thought why not? Let’s give it a go.’
Name: Georgia Townend
Occupation: Marketing executive
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I’ve been single for a really long time. Five years. I haven’t done the maths but it’s at least that. I feel like I’ve exhausted all the other options on how to meet people.’
Name: Mary Bedford
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I have the worst luck, ever, with boys. Genuinely the worst ever. I always get dragged into the same circle of boys. So I was like, I need to go in another direction.’
Name: Kaila Troy
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘Real life dating has not been doing me any favours at all. I’ve had it.’
Name: Matthew Macnabb
Occupation: Strategic Marketing Consultant
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I feel like I’m pretty chilled and very adventurous. I’m very laid-back in the sense I like to laugh and I don’t care too much about what people think.’
Name: Amy Day
Why have you signed up for Love Island: I’m clearly not very good at dating myself. I’m looking forward to the experience and the potential of finding someone I might not have met.
Name: Lillie Haynes
From: South Shields
Occupation: Trainee accountant
Who have you got your eye on in the villa? I’ve definitely got my eye on Jake. He’s 100% the type of boy I would go for at home. It’s too good of a match not to just go for. Liam is definitely a dark horse for me, he’s like James Bond when you look at him, absolutely gorgeous. So he could be a very close second.
Name: Jack Barlow
From: East Sussex
Occupation: Racing driver/coach
Who have you got your eye on in the villa? I’m very much a connection type of person so I’ll be able to tell more in person. From what I’ve seen and going off their energy, Chloe has been top of my list. It’s been nice to see her be herself and not care what anyone thinks. I think she’ll be a lot of fun.
Name: Aaron Simpson
What is it like dating as a footballer? Does it make things easier or does it stand in the way? A lot of people have an assumption of me as being a typical player, but I got all of that out of my system when I was younger and now I’m a lot more laid-back when it comes to dating. A lot of people would assume that I go on lots of dates but I’m actually quite picky when it comes to who I date. Sometimes it can be hard to know if someone is genuine or not. My mum is really protective over me. The approval is always needed from mumsy, for sure.
Name: Brett Staniland
Occupation: PhD student and model
Why have you signed up to Love Island? I’ve never had a serious relationship and the last 18 months has been really stagnant in terms of meeting new people and dating. Lots of my friends have settled down, had kids. I’m kind of the one that’s left back from all of that. Now is the right time.
Name: Brad McClelland
Who is their type on paper? Sommer Ray from Instagram. Zara McDermott, she’s a good-looking lass. Or Megan Fox.
Name: Toby Aromolaran
Occupation: Semi-pro footballer
How would he describe himself? ‘Optimistic. I always see the bright side in the worst situations. I’m a fun guy when I go on a night out. Responsible guy as well.’
Name: Chuggs Wallis
Occupation: Hat entrepreneur
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I just feel like it’s now or never. I’m only 23 but I’m scared of aging. Especially as half of my last year of uni was taken away and we had so many fun plans. With Covid and the pandemic, I feel like I’ve missed a year of my youth, so I’m really gagging to get it all back.’
Name: Millie Court
Occupation: Fashion buyer’s administrator
Why did you sign up for Love Island? I’ve been single for over a year now. I’m ready to find ‘The One’. I’m very spontaneous and adventurous ‘
Name: Teddy Soares
Occupation: Senior financial consultant
What girl do you have your eye on? I want to get to know all of the girls. I’m not afraid to step on toes to get the girl I want.
Name: Abigail Rawlings
Location: Bournemouth (from Beaconsfield)
Occupation: Tattoo artist
Will you stir things up? ‘Even if I didn’t go in with the intention of stirring things up, it’ll happen regardless.’
Name: Tyler Cruickshank
Occupation: Estate agent
What will you bring to the villa? ‘More energy I think. I’m a person that doesn’t take myself too seriously. I like messing about. I like jokes. I’m not just going to be there just lazing around.’
Name: Medhy Malanda
Location: Luton (originally from Belgium)
Occupation: American footballer
What girl have you got your eye on? ‘Definitely Kaz. Kaz’s personality is fiery, she’s got energy, she’s funny and she’s got a beautiful smile and she’s a nice girl in general.’
Name: Salma Naran
Occupation: Model and Influencer
Why did you sign up for Love Island? ‘I’ve never been in love. What better place to have a tunnel vision and really finding your one? ‘
Name: Harry Young
Occupation: Car Salesman
What girl have you got your eye on? ‘Kaz has always been in my top three. But once I’m in there and speaking with people, it could change.’
Name: Clarisse Juliette
Occupation: Brand owner/influencer
Who have you got you eye on in the villa? Teddy – he’s tall, confident and smooth. I don’t like horrible, cocky guys. If they are honest, that’s what I’d prefer
Name: Dale Mehmet
Will you step on toes to get who you want? It is what it is, isn’t it? I’m not a bad guy who is going to steal somebody’s girl. But if I want something then I’m going to pursue it. I would go about it all in the right way. Everybody would be well aware of what I was doing.
Name: Sam Jackson
Occupation: Maintenance engineer
Will you step on toes to get who you want? That doesn’t bother me. I’m happy to step on someone’s toes to get what I want. If that’s what I’ve got to do, I’ve got to do it. I am looking forward to meeting the boys as well, I’m a proper lads’ lad. I see myself getting on with the boys as well – it’ll be good to meet some new people and get a few bromances going!
Name: Priya Gopaldas
Occupation: Med student
Who is your celebrity crush? This is a very strange answer but Boris Johnson. I have a soft spot for him. It’s the confidence but he is a total sweetheart on the inside and that’s what I like in a boy. He’s the prime minister, very driven but then on the inside he’s a cuddly bear. I also love his blonde hair, that does it for me!
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