Netflix's hot new dating show with a twist: Too Hot to Handle (review)

The first season of Netflix’s hot new dating show: Too Hot to Handle, has just launched and it is seriously binge-worthy. But this is a dating show with a twist…

The tragic death earlier this year of former Love Island host, Caroline Flack, is the third suicide to be connected to the hit reality show Love Island. And while demand for Instagram-influencer reality TV does not seem to be slowing down, it has become clear that something just isn't quite right.

Sophie Gordon (left) died on the 20th June 2018. Mike Thalassitis (middle) died on March 15th 2019
Caroline's is the third death realted to the hit reality show, Love Island.

Netflix has identified this and taken action, releasing two new dating shows with unique approaches to finding love: Love is Blind and more recently Too Hot to Handle.

“Love is Blind” (forgive me, I am on episode 1), takes the social experiment approach to reality TV where love is literally blind. Unlike “Married at First Sight” where one's perfect match is dictated by 'scientific algorithms' (most often unsuccessfully), Love is Blind puts the fate of contestants in their own hands as they get to know potential spouses through a thin wall. All the while, they live with others of the same sex who are trying to do the same (no competition there then!) and they don't get to see who they are talking to until they decided to get married...

For the younger crowd, too young to think about marriage and still following all the Love Island contestants from series 1, Too Hot to Handle is the binge-worthy series for you.

The show combines AI (the host is an intelligent air freshener called Lana) with the semi-spiritual qualities of personal growth.

Forget about an Island, this is a retreat.

And the vehicle for growth on this retreat?

Chastity. That is, growing relationships before initiating any sexual encounters.


After the first 24 hours of getting to know each other, the contestants have already managed to squeeze in a few cheeky kisses before Lana reveals to them the true purpose of the show.

They have been chosen because they are serial-fling sex addicts who just don’t take the time to get to know anyone before going all the way. The result: they are unhappy and uncommitted in love. But as the show develops, we come to realise the deep truth that relationships are just as much about our relationship with ourselves than with our partners. How the hell you gunna love somebody else when you can't love yoself!

The main challenge of the show is to go a month of full on celibacy. That means no sex, no kisses and no masturbation, while at the same time getting to know sexy potential partners.

Lana is watching them 24/7 and for every rule that is broken, money will be taken off the $100,000 cash prize pot.

Without revealing too much about the show, let’s just say they do loose quite a lot of ­­­money.

But they also grow and we see compromises made between the value of the prize money and the value of intimacy in forming human connection.

The show also has some really great characters in it. We have an international crowd as well which is something I think viewers will enjoy.

A clear favourite is Matthew Smith, the guiding figure of wisdom on