Jack and Dani have been crowned the winners of this year’s Love Island, jointly winning the £50,000 prize.
The pair originally “coupled up” on the first episode of the ITV2 series eight weeks ago.
Dani Dyer – daughter of actor Danny Dyer – and pen salesman Jack Fincham have remained together ever since, becoming a firm favourite with viewers.
The pair held off competition from Laura and Paul (who came second), Kaz and Josh (third), and Megan and Wes.
“It’s been an amazing experience, I feel so lucky and grateful, it’s honestly been amazing,” Dani told presenter Caroline Flack.
“Everything’s been a highlight for me… the ups and downs, you take the good with the bad in here.”
After Dani and Jack were announced as the winners, Jack was given the choice of keeping the prize money for himself, or sharing it with Dani.
He opted for the latter – meaning the couple will share the £50,000.
Jack said the moment he realised he was in love with Dani was when the male and female contestants were separated, with the boys being taken off to an alternative villa.
“When I was at Casa Amor I was so down, I was like ‘I’m meant to be enjoying this’, but I was just having a [rubbish] time,” Jack said.
“When I was there, I didn’t realise how much I’d miss her, and I just thought, you know what, I love her.”
Asked what would be their biggest challenge after leaving the villa, Jack joked: “Living with her.”
The pair confirmed they now plan to start house hunting together.
Dani and Jack were the bookies’ favourite to win. They had one or two hiccups along the way – including the recent lie detector task.
But asked whether they now completely trust each other, Jack said: “One hundred million percent.”
The final episode saw the remaining contestants prepare for the Love Island summer ball – which involved a crash course in salsa dancing.
The female contestants then went dress shopping ahead of the islanders’ final night in the villa.
Later that evening, the couples were seen reflecting on their journeys in the villa before making declarations of love.
Dani’s declaration to Jack:
“Jack, when I first entered the villa eight weeks ago, I never imagined that in a million years I would have met someone as special as you.
“From our first date together on the beach, to our trip in a hot air balloon, we have already made so many special memories, and I can’t wait for even more.
“I have had the summer of my life in here and I owe so much of that to you, Jack.”
Jack’s declaration to Dani:
“You are everything that I’ve ever wanted in a girl. Getting to know you and fall in love with you has been one of the most wonderful things to ever happen in my life.
“Firstly, you are an absolute sort. You are so caring and selfless, you have such a beautiful smile.
“When I see you happy, it makes me feel a way that I’ve never felt about someone before.”
Earlier in the episode, Wes Nelson, one of the few contestants to have remained in the villa for the duration of the series, said: “This has been the best summer ever.
“This has been the best experience ever. And I’ve met the best girl ever. It’s just been one bundle of the best.”
On Twitter, Jack and Dani’s win went down well with most viewers – although many pointed out it was hardly a surprise.
So glad Jack & Dani won! Both deserved it completely???????? #loveisland
— Lacey Fuller (@laceyfuller_) July 30, 2018
Dani and Jack are the winners of Love Island, and in other news the sky is blue #LoveIsland
— lew (@lookingforlewys) July 30, 2018
Many fans of the series said they would struggle to fill their evenings now the nightly ITV2 show has finished.
Now what do I do with my evenings ???? #LoveIsland
— Katie Passingham ? (@KJPassingham) July 30, 2018
But not everyone was a fan of this year’s series, with some calling into question the structured elements of the show.
Within milliseconds of #LoveIsland ending I deleted their app and itv’s one too. This years one was so staged, boring and predictable ????????
— Bunmi (@bumascloset) July 30, 2018
‘A long, hot summer’
When presenter Caroline Flack tweeted ahead of the launch of this year’s Love Island that it was going to be a “long, hot summer”, nobody knew just how true that would turn out to be.
The UK has been in the grip of a heatwave during the eight-week series, in a summer that also saw President Trump’s UK visit, the Thai cave rescue and World Cup fever.
So I had a sneak peek at this years LOVE ISLANDERS today….. and …. it’s gonna be a LONG HOT SUMMER …@LoveIsland ??
— caroline flack (@carolineflack1) April 19, 2018
Through it all, there has been Love Island – a series that has been a consistent success for ITV2, breaking the channel’s all-time record ratings and frequently attracting more than five million viewers per episode (across all platforms and catch-up services).
The series has seen lie detector tests, contestants who had never heard of Brexit and the inevitable debate about body diversity.
Contestants we lost along the way included Samira – who exited so she could be with her evicted boyfriend Frankie – and Niall, who left early in the series for “personal reasons”, later revealing that he has Asperger’s Syndrome.
Evenings won’t be the same without it. The big questions are whether the winning couple will be able to stay in the spotlight – and stay together – and whether audiences will come back for more next year.