Love Island shock as TOWIE's Joey Essex walks into villa as first ever celebrity bombshell


Love Island viewers were over the moon when 33-year-old former TOWIE star Joey Essex made a surprise appearance on the show.

Joey was revealed as the first Bombshell of the new summer series during the premiere episode, marking a first for the popular reality TV programme. While past Islanders like Adam Collard and Kady McDermott have returned to the villa for another shot at finding love on national television, Joey is the first well-known celebrity to join the show as a contestant.

This unexpected addition to Love Island is no stranger to our screens, having featured on numerous reality TV shows worldwide since his debut on The Only Way is Essex in 2011. Over the years, besides coining his catchphrase 'reem' on TOWIE from 2011 until 2013, Joey has had a stint in the jungle for the 13th series of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!

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In 2013, he won the Channel 4 series The Jump, tried his luck twice on Celebs Go Dating, appeared on Celebrity Ex on the Beach, been pushed to his limits on Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins, cooked up a storm on Celebrity MasterChef and made a splash in the first series of Splash!

More recently, Joey - who was once engaged to fellow TOWIE star Sam Faiers - took on the Australian jungle in the 8th series of "I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! " down under, securing a respectable sixth place. Fast forward to 2023, and he skated his way to becoming the runner-up in the 15th series of " Dancing on Ice."

Joey Essex is set to turn up the heat in the Love Island villa with his bombshell arrival, as teased in the cliffhanger of tonight's series opener. The reality TV personality left fans stunned with his buzzcut and memorable entrance.

JOEY LOVE ISLAND PROMO PIC
JOEY LOVE ISLAND PROMO PIC

Social media was abuzz immediately after the reveal, with one fan quipping on Twitter: "Joey essex coming in as a bombshell in love island was not on my 2024 bingo card #loveIsland," following his surprise appearance. The official Love Island account also stirred excitement by posting Joey's picture with the caption: "The only way is... Essex. The #LoveIsland Villa just got a bit more 'reem' as Joey Essex has arrived to find his future wife."

The chatter on Twitter didn't stop there, with one user remarking on the unusual situation: "I DONT KNOW WHATS MORE WEIRD, JOEY ESSEX BEING ON LOVE ISLAND OR HIM BEING 33," while another voiced their displeasure: "Why would they bring Joey Essex? Just ruining the dynamic every year by bringing a 'celeb'." Nonetheless, some viewers were overjoyed at the twist, with one tweeting: "okay joey essex walking in was a GAG and a half #loveisland."

Earlier in the year, Joey Essex certainly caught attention when he debuted his new look on Instagram, sparking rumours of a potential move overseas. The 33 year old, who is related to TOWIE star Chloe Sims, has been spotted several times in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), leading to speculation about him possibly making Dubai his new home.

Chatter of Joey mulling over a move to Dubai arose as early as last April. Suggestions were made that he was seeking a plush pad in the luxe city which would enable easy jaunts between the UK and UAE.

His ubiquitous Instagram uploads painted a picture of Dubai evolving beyond a typical vacation spot; it appeared to be shaping into a second "home" for the TV star, as illustrated by countless snaps capturing his time there. However, this April marked his homecoming to the UK after an extended bout of globe-trotting, inclusive of a stint in the US where his cousins Chloe, Charlie, Demi, and Frankie Sims were filming their reality series.

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During a prior Californian getaway, Joey unveiled a dramatically different image - a crisp buzz cut earning swift accolades from his legion of Instagram supporters. He'd frequently upload shots flaunting his updated look, complementing a selfie with an evocative caption in February: "My dreams reach to a world that doesn't exist, but I'll see you soon anyway."

Joey's fresh look incited a deluge of commendations from his followers. One admirer extolled: "Best I've ever seen you look." A fellow fan echoed these sentiments remarking: "Looking smooth dude." The brunt of fans reactions toward Joey were affirmative, with comments like "Love the buzz cut," and another supporter chimed in, "It suits [you]."

Lateysha Grace, a mate of Joey's, showed her support for his new haircut, exclaiming: "Joey the short hair suits you loads! " It was clear that his followers were quite fond of the fresh hairstyle.