It lasted about 150 seconds as the clock struck 9.09 p.m. on Sunday night: a series of anomalies occurred on Love Island that seemed to fracture the entire reality television continuum.
Michael told Yewande about his biomedical thesis on cystic fibrosis mutations; Anton led a seminar on the science of laughter therapy; Amber shared that she often works with her aunt, an author writing a book on happiness and positivity; Anna reflected on how fulfilled she felt in her career as a pharmacist.
Sure, Joe then started talking about sandwiches again — but something had changed. The villa felt different now. The mask slipped, and revealed an unforeseen depth.
Whatever your feelings about the ITV2 phenomenon — problematic fast food television, exquisite escapism from the impending apocalypse, an apt reflection of a “post-capitalist hellscape” — we always knew that some contestants were far more intelligent than brutalising production edits might otherwise suggest.
Last year a nuclear engineer, political advisor, and A&E doctor graced the villa’s hallowed halls, while Camilla Thurlow, bomb disposal expert and runner-up in 2017, now spends her days fighting the refugee crisis.
This season, it’s all about Yewande Biala: a self-confessed “terrible flirt” from Dublin, who just so happens to be a vaccine scientist too.
Yewande started university when she was just 16 — flex! — graduating with a first class honours degree — better than me — in biotechnology from Athlone Institute of Technology in 2016 before heading off to do a master’s — OK, that’s just showing off now — in pharmaceutical quality assurance.
She then went on to work 60-hour weeks as an oncology vaccine specialist — basically, trying to find a cure for cancer.
“Every time I say that I’m a scientist, people are shocked,” Yewande said before entering the villa. “I think there are loads of intelligent people on reality television.”
“I don’t think there is a science to finding love,” the 23-year-old added. “If there is then I have clearly been reading the wrong books!”
By her own admission, Yewande is, well, a bit awkward. She’s clumsily knocked over a mug or two while chatting to love interest Danny, doesn’t like laying it on factor 50, and sometimes struggles to get her words out.
But all she really needs to fulfill her potential is the right language, a few one-liners, maybe a helping hand on some dating discourse.
That’s why Global Citizen has resurrected our hazmat suits from that regretful “Walter White Christmas” office party to hit the lab and cook up the perfect formula for pick-up lines that might make you fancy vaccines too — and, Yewande, we’ve had seven eureka moments.
You might note that we’ve avoided “bev” at all costs. Sorry, Lucie, but “bevvy”, “bevil”, or “bevnish” will not catch on. It’s like most vaccinatable diseases — sure, some viral content, the occasional outbreak. But the world must do everything it can to keep it quarantined.
To the pick-up lines!
1. Hey, boy, are you a vaccine or just immune to my charms?
2. Are you chicken pox? Because I want all up in my face.
3. Break up with your girlfriend like she’s polio, because she is 99.9% history.
4. Am I catching feelings right now or did I just miss my booster?
5. Is that active immunity or are you just happy to see me(mory cells).
If you’re a vaccine scientist, this joke is definitely your type on paper.
(If you’re not a vaccine scientist, it goes something like this: active immunity is what you get when vaccines work. Your immune system will then automatically create antibodies — disease-fighting protein superheroes! — to fight foreign antigens — the evil viruses and bacteria that want to invade Planet You. Memory cells are the things that can remember what the nasty antigen looked like from its previous cameo — via vaccines, which made a sort of clone of the virus — and can make the right antibodies required to defend the body. The best jokes are the ones you have to explain, am I right?)
6. You must be a doctor, ‘cause I’m ready for you to get me a shot.
7. Did it hurt when you fell from 40°C?
Fast forward to end of series: Lucie and Joe bore each other rigid, Amy finds out Curtis loves Tommy, Molly Mae falls for a passing dolphin (her type) Yewande completes her dissertation on pool chlorine and Callum returns to win the show solo. #loveisland— LoveIslander (@islander_love) June 11, 2019