Yep, Winter Love Island will be returning to our screens in a matter of WEEKS, and honestly, we have mixed feelings about it. Feelings we've been struggling to put into words (not ideal if you're paid to write about Love Island on the regs).
Then, while half-watching The Muppet Christmas Carol in the background, we realised we have similar relationships with both Love Island and Christmas dinner. Stay with us...
Despite it all being bit too much at times (Love Island and Christmas dinner, remember), we got through it and loved it. HOWEVER, a decent and sensible period of respite was required before heading back for any more. Naturally, that didn't happen and we headed back prematurely for round two. Because of that, we were left painfully stuffed, dizzy, bloated, a bit sick and in desperate need of a lie down. So yeah, to us, Winter Love Island is like Christmas dinner seconds – we want it (oh, how we want it), but we're already full and borderline sick to our stomachs. Seriously, we're still digesting, "YOU ARE A LIAR, ACTRESS, GO THE F**K OUT!"
We just know that's how we're going to feel about Winter Love Island series two when it launches next month; mainly because we've already experienced such an over-saturation of Love Island before thanks to the 2020 series starring Shaughna Phillips and Shaughna Phillips only (in our eyes).
While we're feeling a bit whingy and ungrateful (The Muppet Christmas Carol isn't even helping ); we're also not massive fans of the idea of watching a bunch of wannabe influencers prance around in swimwear in the sun while we're feeling very, very, let's say, January (no thanks to those Christmas dinner leftovers).
According to The Sun, insiders have revealed that Winter Love Island will begin on Monday 16 January 2023, aka Blue Monday, aka the most depressing day of the year.
A source told the publication, “Love Island bosses have planned for the show to start on Blue Monday – which is bound to give fans a massive lift on such a gloomy day.
“This year’s contestants will be flown out to South Africa earlier in January and will start filming for the first episode the day before.
“The grand finale will take place eight weeks later on March 13."
Winter Love Island – which is set to be filmed in a luxurious villa in South Africa and will apparently star some of the "sexiest ever" contestants ever to grace the series – was axed after one series back in 2020, but ITV have decided to bring it back for another season and and despite the last 200 words or so, we are hyped. A few bits and pieces have been revealed regarding the upcoming series and we have all the deets.
Who will host Winter Love Island 2023?
Laura Whitmore announced in August that she would be stepping down as presenter of the reality show, admitting “There are certain elements of the show I’ve found very difficult.”
She shared a goodbye post on her Instagram and rumours of who would take her place quickly began circling like nobody’s business.
At one point ex-Islander and fan favourite, Maura Higgins, was a popular choice for host, but in October the official Love Island Instagram account shared a post announcing Maya Jama would be following in Laura's footsteps as the new face of the show.
When does Winter Love Island start?
According to a show insider, Winter Love Island will return to ITV and ITVX on Monday 16 January 2023.
Who are the rumoured Islanders?
The list of supposed contestants is an ever changing roster of celebrity siblings, nepotism babies and Instagram influencers.
TOWIE's Liam 'Gatsby' Blackwell recently shared a rather incriminating post where he tagged his younger brother Eamon and suggested his baby bro heading into the Love Island villa.
Eamon's last post was a handsome pic of himself sunning it up in Portugal, but the younger Blackwell brother hasn't uploaded any photos for a few months, is he prepping to enter the villa and find a new romance?
Atomic Kitten singer Kerry Katona has also encouraged daughter Lilly-Sue McFadden to take part in the show. Kerry told heat, “Our Lilly gets asked twice a year [to do Love Island]. She keeps saying no and I’m like, ‘Lilly, it’s time you move out. Go and do f**king Love Island, make all the money you can and get your own b*****d apartment!’
It is somewhat of a tradition for an islander to be a celebrity relation or friend but the Winter version looks set to throw in more than just one. After the popularity of Dani Dyer and Gemma Owen, perhaps they should reach out to Lilly-Ella Gerrard. The TikTok star is daughter of football legend Steven Gerrard and would be a perfect Islander to feature on the show. With 197k followers on Instagram and a strong TikTok following of 68.7k Lilly-Ella is already a popular influencer in the world of social media and would likely have a supportive fanbase.
Where is Winter Love Island filmed?
According to the same insider, Winter Love Island will once again be filmed in South Africa, as opposed to the summer series which if always filmed in Majorca, Spain.
They said, "“The villa is absolutely amazing, Maya is raring to go and this series’ contestants are looking to be the sexiest ever."
The Sun previously reported that this year’s Winter Islanders would be staying in a luxurious mansion based in Millionaire’s row.