Over the past few months, quarantine orders have forced singles to stay home, effectively shutting down the dating scene. Fortunately, that makes right now the perfect time to watch other sexually frustrated singles try to find love on a month-long retreat to paradise in Netflix’s “Too Hot to Handle.” The new dating/reality show features a group of five guys and five girls, all of whom are addicted to short-lived flings, attempt to form long-lasting and meaningful romantic relationships. The show’s cast and their inability to keep it in their pants make “Too Hot to Handle” a fun break from reality.
When cast members are first welcomed to the retreat by Lana, a smart speaker that serves as the show’s host, they are not aware of the retreat’s rules. They begin to form designs on each other before Lana brings their planning to a halt: The sex-crazed singles are not allowed to kiss, inappropriately touch each other, have any kind of sex or even masturbate. Of course the singles are surprised and frustrated, but Lana claims that it’s all to help them form deeper emotional bonds with each other. If anyone breaches the rules, there is a deduction from the $100,000 prize fund.
The cast is originally composed of five guys and five girls with one new guy and girl added to the group over the course of the eight-episode season. The cast is hot, horny and hysterical. These girls and guys are “serial swipers,” quickly beginning and ending new flings and really playing the field. Their interactions on camera will quickly have you rooting for some couplings while regretting the formation of others.
Funnily enough, a few of the contestants become very concerned about the others’ sexual activity and worry about the resulting deductions from the prize fund. Contestants Matthew (also known as “Jesus” because of his long hair) and Kelz especially fear how others’ unchaste acts might decrease the prize and almost beg their fellow singles to keep their hands, lips and other body parts to themselves.
Nevertheless, a few contestants begin to form relationships, and things get hotter and steamier from there. After the cast is more familiar with each other, Lana sends several couples on dates where they can see if they have a spark. Part way through the series, Lana provides the singles with watches that will light up when they form a true emotional bond. For the duration of time that the watch is lit up, singles can break the rules with no consequences. And, if a couple has begun to form a deeper emotional bond, they are rewarded/challenged with a night in the private suite. Lana calls it the “ultimate test of chastity,” and (as you probably guessed) most of the couples fail it.
The humor of the show comes in when singles are pushed to their breaking point and try to find different ways of being physically intimate. (No one said anything about shared showers or innocent cuddling, right?) The singles’ frustration is funny and surely relatable for many right now. Watching a financially conscious yet sexually deprived Kelz struggle to justify hooking up with his crush Francesca is hilarious and just about what we need right now.
The show and the cast are ridiculous in general, but that’s what makes “Too Hot to Handle” entertaining. The cast’s web of allies, enemies and crushes makes a great story to get caught up in, and you’ll enjoy all the absurdities of Netflix’s newest “reality” show.
Stephanie Santillo is a senior staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.