Joey Essex Joins Love Island as First Celebrity Contestant

ITV's Love Island returns with unexpected twists and new couples.

by Nouman Rasool
Joey Essex Joins Love Island as First Celebrity Contestant
© Presley Ann/Getty Images

The villa on Love Island has let in reality TV star Joey as the first celebrity to participate in the show. The ITV dating series, which returned on Monday night, holds the surprise arrival of Joey, who has entered the villa to join a new batch of contestants.

Maya Jama—dressed in white herself—welcomed the new residents of the villa and hinted that there were a few more surprises to come. "Well, it's good to see you're all settled in. As you know, you are in Love Island, and you must always expect the unexpected.

So, please welcome Joey," she revealed in preparation for Joey's dramatic entry onto the scene. Joey,hoped to find his 'queen' on the show. The 33-year-old TV personality first burst onto the big time on The Only Way Is (TOWIE), and since then, he has appeared on everything from I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins, Celebrity MasterChef, Celebs Go Dating, and Dancing On Ice.

Island Pairings Unveiled

In earlier scenes, Maya Jama challenged the Islanders to make first impressions count. "Boys and girls, I now want you to rate each other in order of who you think has come across the most like boyfriend and girlfriend material, right down to who has given the least relationship vibes," she said after the rankings would come the pairings into new couples.

Among those coupled was a 24-year-old mental health nurse from Portsmouth, Mimii Ngulube, and a 30-year-old recruitment manager from Surbiton, Munveer Jabbal. Also newly formed was the couple comprising a 24-year-old accounts manager from Aberdare, Nicole Samuel, and a 24-year-old salesman from Hertford, Sean Stone.

Other couples were 26-year-old Liverpool make-up artist Samantha Kenny and 23-year-old Chesterfield hairstylist Sam Taylor; 24-year-old dancer and personal shopper Harriett Blackmore, from Brighton, coupled with a 21-year-old surveyor from Pencoed, South Wales, Ciaran Davies; and 25-year-old Stockport retail manager Jess White coupled with semi-professional footballer Ronnie Vint from London.

Ayo Odukoya, a 25-year-old model from Canning Town, was paired with 29-year-old office administrator Patsy Field from Orpington. Patsy, who lives with Erb's palsy, revealed something seemingly minor about her life when she said she slept in a bed with her mother because they didn't have much space.

And in one moment of candidness, Ciaran Davies confessed to having been involved with a woman over 40 when he was just 18.