‘Love Island’ host Arielle Vandenberg dishes on show’s lusty vibe
Love Island | Tuesday, 8 p.m., CBS
“Hookup Island” might be a more apt title for CBS’ “Love Island,” the remake of the hit British reality series. The show invites bikini-clad babes and brawny bros to a tropical-paradise villa — this time in Fiji — where the sexy singles must couple and re-couple, round-robin style, every few days in hopes of finding love (and perhaps making it) with a worthy mattress mate. Think “Big Brother” with bursting thermostats: Couples sleep together each night. Through a series of challenges, as well as viewers voting via an app, contestants are kicked off the island as replacements are brought in to break up established (and perhaps exhausted) couples. Eventually, a long-lasting duo is crowned the winners. The series will premiere with a 90-minute episode Tuesday, followed by one-hour episodes every weeknight through Aug. 7. Local fans will note that 24-year-old New York advertising executive Elizabeth Weber is a cast member.
The Post recently talked with the show’s host, actor and comedian Arielle Vandenberg, 32, by phone from LA as she was packing three “pretty big” suitcases.
Have you seen any of the UK versions of “Love Island”?
I saw a couple clips before I had my audition. Then I made my boyfriend watch with me, and we got addicted. Then I ended up getting [cast], which is perfect because now I’m obsessed with it.
My first impression was, “This is like watching a romantic comedy.” It’s not a normal reality show. They don’t take themselves too seriously. There’s so many different types of people, it’s really entertaining. They’re not just there for the drama, not just there to be famous. They’re actually awesome, funny people.
Is it about finding true love?
People go on reality shows for all different reasons. You’re watching people fall in love, people fall in lust, people become really close friends. It’s so fun to watch people become friends, actually; that’s why it felt more like a romantic comedy. It’s about whatever you find when it’s all said and done — whether it’s a best friend or love or prize money.
What clothing did the producers tell you to pack?
Loose-fitting things that aren’t going to stick to you because apparently Fiji is very humid. Lots of bathing suits. Thankfully, I have a wardrobe stylist on set, so I’m going to wear some fun island stylings. But I packed for whatever comes my way. If they take “Love Island” to the Antarctic, I’m ready.
Have you seen the villa?
I haven’t seen it; they’re keeping everything so secret to get our genuine reactions when we get there. I’m terrified. I’m going into this blind.
How slutty will the contestants actually get?
People are staying in one room, so you can imagine the weird stuff happening in the next bed. They’re not fully showing everything, but anything’s possible. Sometimes they just show a bed and you know there’s two people under the sheets and you’re like, “They’re showing people under there, doing God only knows what!” Playing Jenga? I imagine things get crazy, especially when you’re stranded. You get all desperate and anything goes, I guess.
Does the show provide condoms?
I freakin’ hope so! If not, I’ll provide them. [Laughs] No, don’t print that! [Note: A CBS spokesperson confirms that “Love Island” supplies condoms, although contestants must also test negative for sexually transmitted diseases.]
— Eric Hegedüs
And here’s what else to watch this week:
Claws | Sunday, 10 p.m., TNT
Desna (Niecy Nash) and Dean’s (Harold Perrineau) world turns sideways when an estranged relative appears from their past. Things take an even more unexpected twist when the Lovestones retaliate against Desna for getting in their way.
Yellowstone | 10 p.m., Paramount
Rainwater (Gil Birmingham) announces a business deal, but his enemies block the plan. With Luke Grimes and Kevin Costner.
Blood & Treasure | Tuesday, 10 p.m., CBS
The search for a Nazi hunter leads Danny (Matt Barr) and Lexi (Sofia Pernas) to Montreal, where they suspect that the last of the Nazis who escaped with Cleopatra may still be alive.
Endeavour on Masterpiece | Sunday, 9 p.m., PBS
Season finale. The collapse of a tower block reveals a clue that may solve a haunting crime. Starring Shaun Evans and Roger Allam.
Big Little Lies | Sunday, 9 p.m., HBO
Renata (Laura Dern) deals with the fallout from Gordon’s (Jeffrey Nordling) legal troubles. Celeste (Nicole Kidman) prepares for her court date. Bonnie (Zoë Kravitz) relives memories.
Snowfall | Wednesday, 10 p.m., FX
Season premiere. Franklin (Damson Idris) and Cissy (Michael Hyatt) make an investment in the community. Jerome (Amin Joseph) unveils his new business. A new cook on the streets is competing with Franklin’s crew. Teddy’s (Carter Hudson) operation in Mexico becomes more complicated.
City on a Hill | Sunday, 9 p.m., Showtime
Jackie (Kevin Bacon) strong-arms Jimmy (Mark O’Brien) to find the dead armored truck guards. Meanwhile, Decourcy (Aldis Hodge) rattles a suspect called to testify before the grand jury.
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