US remakes are not my thing. When they happen, I think they send a harmful message: film and TV shows aren’t worth acknowledging unless they’ve been Americanised. That being said, I’m not above stating the obvious. Some US adaptations are better than the originals – and the latest seems to be Love Island US. I started watching after seeing Twitter users talk about how we’re being played with the UK original. The further I get into the season, the more weight their points have.
Within moments of the first episode, Cashay – a dark skinned Black woman with a shaved head – was celebrated. I cheered with excitement as that scene alone emphasised what the original version lacked. Every darker skinned Black woman on the UK show has had a long straight wig or weave. This is said not to critique Black women with this hair style, but the production team prioritising Black women with Eurocentric hairstyles. It’s no surprise a Black woman’s bonnet or flash of her canerows causes celebration in UK Black Twitter. The bonnet slander that followed is a direct consequence of casting’s narrow standards.