What makes a winning Love Island couple?
There are a few key ingredients: coupling up early and remaining committed, earnest relationship milestones reached on screen (+10 points for a declaration of love), a sprinkling of meme worthy moments and some low risk hardships to overcome, only to emerge stronger than ever.
This year, the couple racing to the podium are sweet 20-year-old puppy dog and professional boxer Tommy Fury and influencer by trade Molly-Mae. They’ve been coupled up since early in the season, overcame a Maura shaped obstacle, they’re officially girlfriend and boyfriend and have even dropped the L-bomb. On the surface, the paring is 100% the nation’s type on paper, but have we grown immune to this safe and rather dull strain of Love Island couple?
To find out, SoundOut have looked beyond the winning criteria as set by past winners and asked: what strange alchemy is it that creates a winning Love Island couple in 2019?
Compatibility is key. At its heart, Love Island is about two contestants being significantly more compatible than any other pairing on the show. True love is the aim of the game. What if we had a definitive way of knowing who the most compatible couples on the show are? And by extension, a data backed prediction of who will win this year’s show.
Being that the Islanders are set to become some of the most successful and influential brands in Britain, we applied cutting edge and rigorous brand personality technologies and consumer surveys to the remaining eight contestants, using our panel of over 2.5 million consumers. Just as brands need a strong sense of character to thrive in a congested market, so to do the islanders in a villa full of cookie-cutter perfect models.
This is the same archetype analysis leading FMCG brands use to inform multimillion-pound marketing campaigns and reveals a quantitative measurement of each Islander’s character, popularity and compatibility, as perceived by the public.
So, are the couples the real deal? Who has found everything they’re looking for and who is long overdue a re-coupling? The results are in! First we’ll look at the overall compatibility of each of the couples, then overall appeal/likability ratings, and finally (*drum roll please*) the poll predicting the final result…
Amber and Greg: 89% Compatible
Amber and Greg are two favourites in the villa, but they’re still a relatively new couple. They have yet to fully establish their relationship and by extension, their compatibility. Amber’s character development throughout this season has been second to none, having been subjected to much emotional turmoil when good boy turned villain Michael dumped her in favour of the shiny new Joanna. Amber had all but given up on love, until Irish professional rugby player/ lawyer (we shit you not) arrived in the villa, causing Amber’s head to finally turn. Her rocky path to love endeared her to the nation, and she now has an avid fan base.
The couple’s comparatively low compatibility score of 89% is justifiable. In all aspects of character testing the two exist on opposite ends of the spectrum – they complement one another. Amber is a Ruler Hero Explorer, with an assertive and dynamic personality, she’s driven and independent. On the flipside we have the lesser known Greg whose brief dalliance in the villa has primarily seen him on the charm offensive, putting in the graft to woo Amber. He’s been pitched to the public by producers as a kind of Irish knight in shining armour. Our analysis mapped Greg as a Jester Innocent, a fun-loving and carefree personality with core values of love and guidance. A low compatibility score isn’t necessarily bad news for the pair. Their popularity with the public is undeniable and opposites do attract, after all.
Curtis and Maura: 90% Compatible
Curtis and Maura are two of the biggest personalities in the villa. Maura is fun, fiery and so, so Irish. Both a fun-loving Jester Innocent and a warrior like Persuader Ruler. Innocuous words and phrases harden in Mauras mouth, shooting out with the speed and severity of a bullet. When Maura says ‘I tink’ you don’t know whether what’s coming next will make you laugh, cry or duck for cover. Every sentence is a battle cry and Maura is nothing if not a relentless warrior. She knows herself; she knows what she wants and she knows what she won’t stand for.
Then there’s Curtis, he’s a softer character: a caregiver, mentor and companion. He doesn’t present the same hypermasculinity as the other men in the villa, he’s a liquid hipped professional ballroom dancer and de facto agony uncle. Despite positioning of himself as number one nice guy, he still managed to tear ex-half-girlfriend Amy’s heart out after unsuccessfully attempting to crack on with the bemused model Jourdan. Once Amy left, Curtis and Maura were free to crack on themselves. But theirs is a strangely passionate and stilted relationship. The size and strength of their characters makes it hard consider them as a couple, moulded harmoniously into one. The rotund mapping of their personalities reflects the public’s inability to pin them down. Curtis goes from being a sweet half boyfriend to Amy, to ineffective ladies’ man, to self-appointed, woefully unqualified villa therapist. Then there’s Maura, from sexually confident temptress (who can forget the “trobbing”) to rageful, fiery friend to love struck teen, gooey eyed over her manly ballroom dancer.
The two have them have so much personality it seems near impossible to pack it all down into one convincing relationship.
Ovie and India: 93% Compatible
Ovie is this year’s most popular contestant and perhaps even the most popular that Love Island has seen. He’s captured the hearts, minds and fantasies of men, women and meme accounts all over Britain. In four short weeks he has established himself as the nation’s sweetheart. His calming aura practically repels drama and his trademark “MESSAGE” is the sound of the summer. He’s tall and impossibly handsome, standing out in a villa where beautiful bodies and beautiful faces are so ubiquitous as to make them worthless.
Then we have India, a fairly new arrival, who has yet to make much of an impact. But by association with Ovie alone, she stands a good chance at winning this thing.
With a compatibility score of 93% their characters are happily aligned, both Jester Innocents: fun-loving, carefree, supportive, friendly and motivated by happiness. So far, so very pure. However, there is one notable divergence in their values. While consumers perceive both contestants to value love and guidance, we can’t ignore the distinctive peak towards status and control for India. Lest we forget the speculation in one episode that India was only with Ovie to secure herself the 50k prize money…
Every year there’s speculation about which Islanders are faking it. Much to their (faux) outrage, as though the course of love has made them forget they are on a gameshow. If India is ‘playing a game’ then at least she’s chosen to put all her eggs in the most popular basket.
Tommy and Molly-Mae: 95% Compatible
Tommy and Molly-Mae are this year’s love story. Tommy loves Molly. And Molly either loves Tommy or loves the idea of being loved so unconditionally by Tommy. It’s hard to tell.
Either way, they are this year’s front runners. They are the longest serving couple, only facing a minor bump in the road. Namely, when Maura arrived in the villa and immediately attempted to mount a bewildered Tommy, much to Molly-Mae’s fury and dismay.
Nonetheless, they soldiered on and approaching the final, have a near perfect compatibility score. Their relationship has since settled into the low-key, comfortable monotony of one far more long term. Their display of blind devotion to one another seems to be the most effective tactic when securing the prize. Because really, what’s more blinding than the promise of £50,000?
This is a based on a normalised and weighted rating given by consumers to each of the contestants – an approval rating if you like. Ovie and Amber nail it with 73% and 72% respectively. The rest of the cast sit comfortably at 65%-67%. Apart from poor Curtis that is, languishing alone with just 58%.
Tommy and Molly-Mae may be the most compatible couple, but they’re not the most popular contestants. If only Amber and Ovie had joined forces, they could win this thing, but alas.
So, will love conquer all? Or will the Amber or Ovie’s popularity carry them all the way to the 50k -their interchangeable partners simply along for the ride?
And the winner is...
Our poll votes love! Tommy and Molly-Mae may not be the two most popular contestants, but they are the most compatible. If we leave our cynicism at the door, then it seems love is set to win Love Island after all.