NBC’s Saturday Night Live parodies the British television franchise Love Island. In the clip, host Phoebe Waller-Bridge and several cast members joke about dating show cliches, and how U.K. series aren’t that different from popular American shows of the same ilk.
Created by Richard Cowles, Love Island originally aired through 2005 and 2006. The reality show was rebooted in 2015, and showcases various “islanders” who attempt to sustain relationships, and thus stay at the exotic locale while having a chance to win a money prize. Love Island has inspired numerous spin-offs, including an American version that premiered last July on CBS. The premise is not much different than ABC’s Bachelor in Paradise, a spinoff of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette franchise. Just as American shows highlight the ups and downs of dating game strategy, international series feature the same concepts, only the contestants’ regional quirks are more noticeable.
The latest Saturday Night Live episode includes a brief Love Island parody segment. Voiceover narration references the “sensation” that “America is obsessing over.” New cast member Chloe Fineman steals the show as a bedazzled Irish contestant, one who matches her peers’ superficial traits but seems a bit naive about the process. Waller-Bridge portrays Sussex native Bella Rose, who makes sure to acknowledge her lip augmentation, a celebrity trend that American viewers can certainly relate to. The Saturday Night Live sketch mostly pokes fun at contrived dating show personas, and how daily routines often lead to unintentional comedy. The narration reminds viewers, “You WILL watch 50 hours of this,” and mentions all the “little weirdies” that make regional dialects so unique. A final comedic bit about Instagram illustrates how dating show contestants have managed to sustain personal brands beyond their 15 minutes of fame. Other islanders are portrayed by Saturday Night Live cast members Cecily Strong, Alex Moffatt, Beck Bennett, Aidy Bryant, and Chris Redd. Check out "Love Island" below.
Waller-Bridge is best known as the creator of the Amazon comedy series Fleabag and the BBC spy thriller Killing Eve. She also co-wrote the latest James Bond film, No Time to Die. At the 2019 Primetime Emmy Awards, Fleabag season 2 won for Outstanding Comedy Series. Waller-Bridge also won Emmys for her writing and acting.
Given that Saturday Night Live often features political comedy, it’s always fun to see a zany sketch that allows performers to showcase their best skills. As a whole, Waller-Bridge seemed to elevate the show, and offered a fresh perspective with the collective sketch material. As Saturday Night Live season 45 progresses, hopefully Lorne Michaels and company will focus more on original comedy and less on predictable commentaries about American politics.
Source: Saturday Night Live