Ok, so if you haven’t watched the latest Netflix craze, Too Hot to Handle, what have you been doing tbh? THTH is the latest in dating social experiments to grace our TV screens. And with lockdown in full force, this has been a great little binge to have a little and momentary escape from these particularly weird times.
For those that haven’t watched it – and I recommend you do before the next dating social experiment show drops and all we’re left with are a few Instagram memes. Too Hot To Handle is all about hot and sexy singles living together in a luxury villa in sunny Mexico. The big plot twist though, is that they can’t touch, kiss, self-gratify, or have any sexual contact with each other for the duration of their stay.
Everytime they do, money will get deducted from their 100k prize fund. Oh and I forgot to mention, this is over the span of one month. Yep, that’s right, 30 days. You would think by some of their reactions they were being told to abstain for an entire year. I don’t know about you, but staying celebate for a month to take home 100k seems like a pretty sweet and simple deal to me.
Not for these horny singles though. The task seemed almost impossible for some of them, well mainly two in particular, *cough* *cough* Francesca and Harry *cough* *cough*, but we’ll get back to them later.
The part of the show that really drew me in, and that I want to focus on, is the element of self growth Lana (the cone shaped speaking robot that told them what to do) was encouraging them to explore.
Hurt people, hurt people
I’ll be real with you, from episode one, when I was introduced to these shiny, perfectly groomed and polished hot singles, I had a strong incline that I was going to struggle to emotionally invest in any of these self-obsessed, sex-crazy specimens. But to my surprise, as the episodes went on and the focus was less about sex and more on saving the money, and actually getting to know one another on a deeper level – we were exposed to the more vulnerable side of the participants.
We got to hear about how past relationships had left a lot of them with unresolved hurt and trust issues, leading them to have more shallow, physically focused connections with people – in fear of getting hurt again. This leads to a cycle of hurt people, hurting other people and being too afraid to commit to anything serious that requires them being emotionally vulnerable and available (as we saw with Sharron and Rhonda).
This was also made really apparent during the guy only workshop where they were encouraged to write down the biggest things holding them back and any insecurities, to later destroy them and have a sense of “rebirth”.
Almost every guy wrote fear and trust issues. This really showed how under all the six-packs and defined muscles, they are carrying a lot more emotional burdens that could be holding them back from finding true and authentic love.
Self love is the best (and most important) kind of love
A big part of the amazing journey of self growth we witnessed amongst the islanders, was the self love they discovered for themselves. In the female-only workshop Lana set up for the ladies, the importance of really loving yourself and having high self-respect was really highlighted.
The girls took part in a sacred tantric ritual called Yoni Puja, where female organs are explored – and that is exactly what the girls did. Each one whipped off her bikini bottoms, mirror in hand (behind protective screens of course) and got exploring.
They were then encouraged to create a piece of art for their vaginas as a sense of newfound appreciation for them, and how precious they are and shouldn’t be given to any old Tom, Dick or Harry. Some of the girls produced quite deeply throughout representations of their vaginas, and some represented them through animals (unicorns and pussy cats lol), but it’s safe to say all of them walked away appreciating their bodies a lot more.
We could really see this when Chloe had her female empowerment moment, when she told self-confessed player Kori that she wasn’t all that impressed with his lothario antics of leading her on, only to take loved-up Francesca on a date.
In a recent interview with the Metro she expressed ‘I feel I respect myself more and I love myself more. I’m not going to let any boy treat me like rubbish.’
Lana knows best
‘Lana knows best.’ This was something said over and over again by the participants. It seems that by the end of their journey they were getting to understand the significance and the whole point of this abstaining business.
It wasn’t just about having some sort of self-control, but more to give them each an opportunity to self-reflect and grow, as well as focusing on deeper, more emotional connections with each other – and not just jumping straight into bed with each other.
And it seems like most of them really walked away with a changed perspective (except for those that learnt absolutely nothing and were kicked off early – Halely, Kori and Madison…) and a newfound respect for themselves and relationships.
Even irresponsible and sex-crazy Harry and Franseca – who were the main culprits of losing money because of their antics, managed to redeem themselves at the end by spening ONE ENTIRE NIGHT together without touching and returning the money they had previously lost. Hey, it may seem like a small win but we’ll take it.
Everyone walked away happy with a generous amount in their pocket, and a more mature approach to finding love.
All they needed was some guidance in the form of a cone-shaped robot with a trusting and calming voice.
It just shows no one is that irresistible or Too Hot to Handle when it comes to self-growth and earning a healthy sum of cash.
Lana would be proud.