[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for Love Island Games Season 1 Episode 5.]
The first player has left the villa in Peacock‘s inaugural season of Love Island Games. The spinoff takes what viewers love about Love Island and adds a competition element to it, raising the stakes for the returning cast members’ second shots at love.
The Love Island Games cast brings fan-favorites from across the franchise into one house. Stars from Love Island USA, Love Island UK, plus the Australian, French, Swedish, and German casts all live under the villa’s glamorous roof as they search for connection and fight to win the competition. Romance meets reality as the Islanders are faced with both team and couples’ challenges, all while navigating dating, eliminations, recoupling, dramatic arrivals, and new competition twists and turns that help control the game like never before.
Like all versions of the show, players couple up and are vulnerable for elimination if their relationships end. Players can also steal people from other couples, which is a great trick to play if you have your eye on a special someone. That’s what happened when Megan Barton-Hanson (Love Island UK Season 4) dueled with Jessica Losurdo (Love Island Australia Season 4) in order to steal her partner, Steph Blackos (Love Island France Season 2).
Megan and Steph hit it off right away and shared a private kiss not long after coupling up in Episode 12. But they landed in the bottom three couples by Episode 4. Steph and Megan ended up being two of the four Islanders up for elimination, leaving their fates in the hands of the safe Islanders. Steph eventually became the first person eliminated from Love Island Games.
In this exclusive interview with TV Insider, Steph tells all about his short time on the show.
Love Island Games is a brand-new thing. How did your experience in this spinoff compare to your time on Love Island France?
Steph Blackos: I expected the first season of Love Island Games to have more pretty girls, more connection, a big game, and big competition with the boys.
It’s cool to see fan-favorites from different franchises come together.
The diversity, that’s why I did this show. I’m looking for something different with different people. Obviously, I’m from France, so I was like, “Oh, which country is going to be in the show?” So when I came I was like, “Oh my God, Australia, Germany.” I was very impressed. Good impressed.
You’re the first person eliminated from the villa this season in this series. Tell me how that feels.
Big deception, because I’m a competitor. I’m a winner, so I hate losing. And I didn’t have a hand on this competition, you know what I mean? I was eliminated because I was vulnerable, so the people in the villa decided to kick me out. I was pissed about that, because I didn’t lose because of the game. I lost because of the Islanders that decided to eliminate me. I can’t do anything. I just have to accept that and leave the moment, and it is what it is.
I had just started to be closer to Megan, and when I knew I was eliminated, I was like, I like, “F**k.” And I realized that in the game, we don’t have the time, so we need to spend every day at a hundred percent. You know what I mean? So yeah, that’s the game. So I was a little bit sad about that.
How were you getting along with Jessica before you paired up with Megan?
With Jessica, it was just more like a friendly, connection. I just see her as a partner, not as flirting or something like that. Because yeah, we are just friends. We don’t have deep conversation. We don’t have sexual attraction, you know what I mean? So I do see her as a friend.
And with Megan, that wasn’t the case?
Yeah, with Megan, it was the opposite. First of all, physically she is amazing. She was gorgeous. She was pretty stunning. And she was more type than Jess, and we have physical attraction as you can feel, like eye contact, the way we talk and when we kiss. So it was different. So when I was eliminated, I was kind of frustrated because I didn’t finish my work, you know what I mean?
Were you interested in anybody else while you were on there? Or was Megan it for you?
Can I talk about Courtney [Boerner, an upcoming bombshell entering the villa]? Courtney was pretty as well, so I was like, “Sh*t, I was eliminated before meeting them in the show.” I was kind of pissed about that, but anyway that’s the game.
What’s your relationship status with Megan now?
Megan and I, we don’t really talk anymore. We talk sometimes [on their phones], like, “Hi, how are you?” That’s it, the basic things, because we don’t live in the same country and we are both busy [with] work. I model, she’s an influencer and she travels a lot. I really don’t really talk to her too much, but if I see her in front of me, of course, I’m going to have a chat with her. We didn’t plan anything yet.
Were you interested in Megan while you were paired up with Jess?
I mean, when I saw Megan come in the game, in the ring, honestly, I was like, I can’t be focused. I mean, everybody was just insane. So I was like, “Oh, sh*t, I can’t show too much because I respect Jess.” So I was like, “she’s sexy though.” [Laughs] I respect my partner, so I can’t be too demonstrative, like, “Wow, she’s sexy.” But everyone in the villa that look at me, because they know my type, they know what I like … So they look at me, they know what I think, but I can’t talk [to Megan] too much because of [Jess].
How did you like the new competition element of this show?
The competition, it’s amazing because you don’t really have a control on it. Every game was different, and I don’t know who created the game, but this person is very smart. And honestly, that was good organization, especially the one when we take the liquid in the mouth and when you put in the mouth of our partner — that was crazy. And we need to move the table. This one was tough, but yeah. You don’t really have control. You just need to be lucky. Even if people don’t like you in the game, even if you don’t have a team or something like that, you can win the game. It was incredible game.
Would you come back and do it again if you had the opportunity?
If I have the opportunity to come back, I would come back a hundred percent more stronger and more smart and more motivated. That was a great experience and great place and great people.
Who are you rooting for now that you’ve been eliminated?
I had a good connection, good relationship with Ray [Gantt, from Love Island Season 1]. [We were] very close, so I hope he is going to win this game. So yes, Imani [Wheeler, Love Island USA Season 5] and Ray.
To your knowledge, was there anything cut from your episodes that you wished made it into the final edit?
I haven’t seen every episode, but I hope then they’re going to put in the moment when Lisa called me “bitch.” This one got me wild. [Laughs] And I think for the show, it’s going to be good as well. I mean, it’s a little bit trash, but we are in TV shows, so people are not here for sleeping. People are here to enjoy the time, and that’s it. We are in TV shows, so that should be spicy.
Is there anything else that you want to share about your experience on the show?
My experience in the show was great, it was amazing. I just regret that I didn’t spend more time there, because there are pretty girls who came just after when I was eliminated, so ugh. I was kind of frustrated about that, but if I had to do it again, I would do it again. That was a great experience. It’s an amazing game. I don’t regret anything. I talk with everyone there. I had a connection with some people, some people here, some people not. But if you want, you can have a good relationship with everyone.
Love Island Games, Sundays-Fridays, 9/8c, Peacock