Seems to me that Netflix is doubling down on the unscripted reality game. Earlier this year we got The Circle (which was renewed for a second season) and now we have a slightly more adult oriented twist with Too Hot to Handle is a new “Love Island” sort of series which features a mix of 10 pretty 20 something singles from all over the world who all enjoy hooking up and they’re all horny (not my words) to an island in an effort to bring people together to build meaningful relationships based on emotion and not just physicality for a chance to win a grand prize of $100,000. To win, they will need to forego ALL sexual activity of any kind. This includes kissing, touching and even self pleasure all in an effort to win $100,000. Break the rules and the resorts virtual guide Lana will break the news to the guests that they’ve been docked money from the potential grand prize.
To start off, I’ll do my best to not involve any major spoilers but I do know a few parents who let their 10 and 11yr old kids watch The Circle earlier this year and I would like to advise those parents that they may want to vet this one before letting them go at it. Purely due to terms being tossed about like ‘cock block’, ‘horny’ and no-bone zone’ to name a few. So… just a word of warning there. Dealers choice what you choose to do with it.
The first episode or Too Hot to Handle introduces us to the cast character letting us in on the little twist. The house guests meet and immediately begin sizing one another up and chatting about who they’d like to get on. The cast isn’t told about this fun little twist until they’ve spent the day hanging out and flirting and that it’s quite obvious that some of the guests are pairing up and really getting close to that hook-up.
The moment when they’re told that the stipulations are that are not allowed to have sex or sexual activity with anyone… or themselves was quite funny and highly enjoyable for me to watch. The remainder of the series follows the trials, tribulations, victories and indiscretions of these guests. It’s especially fun to see the reactions when the house is told about specific indiscretions and what the cost was to the grand prize winning.
The host narration is well written and pretty humorous at times coming from the same hostess as The Circle, Michelle Buteau. She pulls no punches and isn’t remotely afraid to use terms like cock block and horny. I quite like her as a host for these shows.
Too Hot to Handle was an OK experience for me. I know my wife loved it as this is the sort of reality show that’s right in her wheelhouse. I’m pretty impartial to these sorts of things and instead prefer something more akin to Survivor. Personally I also would have preferred that if this series is more geared to the mature audience, they treat it as such. No more censorship of specific words etc. I’d be down to watch another season if they massage the rules a bit more and give a little bit of transparency to the costing of specific actions and maybe toss a little more skin in the game to either bring the house together or divide them and create a little tension and drama. Realistically that’s why people watch these kinds of things. Too Hot to Handle is guaranteed to find an audience who will love it and be chomping at the bit for more.
All 8 episodes of Too Hot to Handle lands on Netflix Friday April 17, 2020