ITV have spoken out in defence of Love Island host Laura Whitmore after it was revealed comments she made in reference to Ekin-Su Cülcüloğlu had been hit with official complaints. It was confirmed on Wednesday (July 20) that the ITV2 dating show has been slapped with more than 3,000 complaints in ONE week.
During Sunday night’s edition of the show’s spin-off Aftersun. Laura, 37, was discussing Ekin-Su’s reported antics in bed with dumped islander George. The situation had been brought up again during the villa’s ‘Movie Night’ which saw the clip from Casa Amor played to the remaining contestants.
The Turkish actress has repeatedly denied that anything happened between her and the new boy. But during Aftersun, Laura kicked off by saying: “Once again Ekin-Su swore that nothing happened with George and it seems Davide doesn’t believe her.” As the Irish presenter burst into laughter, guest, singer Tom Grennan, commented: “It deffo happened though didn’t it”
Comedian Darren Harriott continued: “She said her head never turned but I think her hand might have turned, and possibly wrist.” And the conversation didn’t stop there as Laura then turned to the show’s third guest, Capital FM DJ Sian Welby, to get her thoughts on the incident.
Ekin-Su’s family and friends were left reeling and the person looking after her social media accounts while she’s away in Mallorca tweeted: “The fact that the s*** shaming is being passed off as banter and good television is very concerning at this rate #LoveIsland.”
It has been confirmed that 427 people contacted the broadcasting watchdog Ofcom following the Aftersun episode in question to hit out at the comments made about Ekin-Su as well as the treatment of Jacques O’Neill, who quit the villa earlier in the week, during his interview with Laura.
Viewers flocked to social media to share their concern for rugby player Jacques as he appeared on the ITV2 show to talk about his time on the show and the real reason behind his sudden exit. Breaking his silence for the first time on TV since leaving, Jacques told host Laura Whitmore: “I needed it, I needed to see the rugby boys and my mum. It got way too much for me in there, it was one of those situations where I didn’t want to be there anymore.”
Jacques appeared to get teary-eyed as Laura asked about his bromance with Luca but in the same night as Jacques’ appearance on Aftersun, viewers saw Adam and Paige share a kiss for the first time.
“Laura is the presenter of the show, and part of that role is to pose questions to the panel and discuss events in the villa,” ITV has since said. “We do not condone trolling against either our host or our Islanders and any subsequent elevation of these comments,” they added to Metro.co.uk.
In regards to viewers’ critique of the interview Jacques, the ITV spokesperson added to the publication : “We had various measures in place to ensure Jacques’ welfare was prioritised at all times ahead of and during his appearance on Aftersun.
“This included a full briefing with show producers to outline the show’s content and likely questioning, a conversation with Laura before and after the show was recorded, and chaperoning from both a welfare producer and a member of his family while he was in studio.”
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