Too Hot to Handle (TV series)
|Too Hot to Handle|
|Genre||Reality dating game show|
|Based on||"The Contest" from Seinfeld|
by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld
|Narrated by||Desiree Burch|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of series||1|
|No. of episodes||9|
|Production locations||Punta Mita, Mexico (Season 1)|
Turks & Caicos Islands (Season 2-present)
|Running time||36–43 minutes|
|Picture format||HDTV 1080p|
|Original release||April 17, 2020 –|
Too Hot to Handle is an American-British reality television dating game show produced by Fremantle production company Talkback. It was created by Laura Gibson and Charlie Bennett. The show consisted of eight episodes, all of which were released on 17 April 2020 on Netflix. The host of the series is a virtual assistant, named "Lana," who announced that the contestants had been tricked into having no sexual contact for four weeks. If they made it, they would be paid $100,000.
On finale night Chloe Veitch, David Birtwistle, Francesca Farago, Harry Jowsey, Kelz Dyke, Lydia Clyma, Nicole O'Brien, Rhonda Paul, Bryce Hirschberg, and Sharron Townsend were all deemed the winners of Too Hot to Handle and split the remaining $75,000 prize.
In January 2021, the series was renewed for two more seasons, with filming underway concurrently amid the COVID-19 pandemic on the Turks and Caicos Islands. The second season is scheduled to premiere on June 23, 2021.
Season 1 (2020)
|Bryce Hirschberg||29||Venice, California||Episode 3||Episode 8||Winner|||
|Chloe Veitch||21||Essex||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|David Birtwistle||28||London||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Francesca Farago||26||Vancouver, British Columbia||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Harry Jowsey||22||Brisbane, Queensland||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Kelechi "Kelz" Dyke||27||London||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Lydia Clyma||22||Portsmouth, Hampshire||Episode 6||Episode 8||Winner|
|Nicole O'Brien||23||County Cork||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Rhonda Paul||27||Atlanta, Georgia||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Sharron Townsend||25||Camden, New Jersey||Episode 1||Episode 8||Winner|
|Kori Sampson||23||Plymouth||Episode 6||Episode 8||Eliminated|
|Madison Wyborny||20||Los Angeles, California||Episode 6||Episode 8||Eliminated|
|Matthew Smith||29||Highlands Ranch, Colorado||Episode 1||Episode 6||Walked|
|Haley Cureton||20||Jacksonville, Florida||Episode 1||Episode 6||Eliminated|
Matthew Smith was a contestant on the twenty-first season of America's Next Top Model. Harry Jowsey was a contestant on the first season of Heartbreak Island in New Zealand. Lydia Clyma was featured on Magaluf Weekender and Sex Clinic. Sharron Townsend appeared on MTV's Undressed in 2017, and he has had minor appearances in Love & Hip Hop and Creed II. Chloe Veitch later went on to appear on season two of The Circle US in 2021. Harry Jowsey, after his participation in Too Hot to Handle, participated in the new reality show of MTV, Match Me If You Can.
|Couples||Won||Still together||Relationship notes|
|Francesca Farago & Harry Jowsey||Yes||No||Although the couple ended the season together, it was later revealed that they had split for eight months after filming wrapped. The two reconciled shortly after and got engaged during the reunion special. On June 16, 2020, Francesca released a video announcing that the two have broken up.|
|Rhonda Paul & Sharron Townsend||Yes||No||Although the two ended the season together, the couple eventually split, citing distance as the demise of their relationship. It was revealed the two still keep in contact, but Rhonda has reconciled with an ex.|
|Lydia Clyma & David Birtwistle||Yes||No||Entering the show in the sixth episode, Lydia struck up a relationship with David and the two ended the season together. David revealed that they ended their relationship.|
|Nicole O'Brien & Bryce Hirschberg||Yes||No||Bryce and Nicole hardly interacted during the show, but they developed a romantic connection in the days after the show wrapped. The two split in May 2020 after attempts at a long-distance relationship failed.|
|Title||Prize money||Original release date |
|1||1||"Love, Sex or Money"||$100,000||17 April 2020|
|2||2||"When Harry Met Francesca"||$97,000||17 April 2020|
|3||3||"Revenge Is a Dish Best Served Hot"||$94,000||17 April 2020|
|4||4||"Two's Company, Three's a ... Threesome"||$94,000||17 April 2020|
|5||5||"Boys to Men"||$75,000||17 April 2020|
|6||6||"The Bryce Isn't Right"||$55,000||17 April 2020|
|7||7||"Sisters over Misters"||$43,000||17 April 2020|
|8||8||"Lust or Bust"||$75,000||17 April 2020|
|9||9||"Extra Hot: The Reunion"||N/A||8 May 2020|
Season 2 (2021)
The cast was revealed on 15 June 2021.
|Cam Holmes||24||South Wales||Episode 1|||
|Carly Lawrence||24||Toronto||Episode 1|
|Chase de Moor||24||Arizona||Episode 1|
|Emily Miller||27||London||Episode 1|
|Kayla Jean||26||Florida||Episode 1|
|Larissa Townson||28||Auckland||Episode 1|
|Marvin Anthony||26||Paris||Episode 1|
|Melinda Melrose||28||New York City[disambiguation needed]||Episode 1|
|Nathan Webb||27||Texas||Episode 1|
|Peter Vigilante||21||New York City[disambiguation needed]||Episode 1|
The show was created by Laura Gibson  and developed by Charlie Bennett, citing Seinfeld episode, "The Contest" as their inspiration for the premise of Too Hot to Handle. Laura Gibson, creative director of Fremantle-owned production company Talkback, which produced the eight-part series, told Deadline Hollywood that she had been working to produce a dating show since 2016.
Viki Kolar and Jonno Richards, executive producers for Too Hot to Handle, said they found inspiration for the virtual character from artificial intelligence and virtual assistants, especially in video surveillance. Viki Kolar stated, "[A.I.] is literally everywhere around us. It's kind of governing us, it's taking over," in an interview with Glamour.
On 5 May 2019, Netflix Studios, LLC applied to trademark the phrase "Too Hot to Handle" for all educational, training, entertainment, sporting, and cultural purposes. The application was approved on 24 June 2019, and was extended on 5 March 2020. This has been done with other Netflix original programs such as Stranger Things, The OA, and Big Mouth. Too Hot to Handle was produced by Fremantle production company Talkback.
In 2018, Talkback announced that casting for an untitled reality television show was open. In total, over 3,000 people auditioned for the show; however, producer Louise Peet stated that the people who ultimately ended up being on the show stood out to the casting team and were chosen quickly.
A luxury resort called Casa Tau in Punta Mita, Mexico opened to guests in December 2018. Soon after, Too Hot to Handle started filming at Casa Tau in late-March 2019 and ended filming in April. After filming had ended, all fourteen contestants were able to spend several days at the resort with no cameras before going home.
On 10 April 2020, Netflix released the trailer for the first season of Too Hot to Handle. The first season of Too Hot to Handle consisted of eight episodes, all of which were released on 17 April 2020 on Netflix. A reunion episode aired on 8 May 2020, where Desiree Burch interviewed the fourteen contestants. The second season is scheduled to premiere on June 23, 2021.
At the allocation ceremony, the ten remaining contestants became the winners. Bryce Hirschberg, Chloe Veitch, David Birtwistle, Francesca Farago, Harry Jowsey, Kelz Dyke, Lydia Clyma, Nicole O'Brien, Rhonda Paul, and Sharron Townsend all split the $75,000 prize fund, resulting in $7,500 for each person.
Too Hot to Handle became the #1 television program on Netflix during the week of April 20. Review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes gives the first season of Too Hot to Handle 35%, holding an average rating of 4.41 out of 10 from 23 reviews. Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, gives the series a metascore of 43 based on 10 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews."
Critic John Serba of Decider panned the show, describing it as "a mashup of Temptation Island, Love Island, "The Contest" episode of Seinfeld and The Peter Griffin Sideboob Hour", stating that "to call it tawdry is to engage in nuclear understatement", calling it "some of the dreckiest dreck ever drecked", and advising viewers to skip it.
Rachelle Hampton of Slate also wrote a negative review, stating: "Despite an irresistibly juicy premise, Too Hot to Handle doesn't know what kind of show it wants to be, and it suffers for lack of direction. (...) Its will-they-or-won't-they concept is ruined as soon as it becomes clear that, yes, they obviously will, even if it means losing tens of thousands of dollars."
Three contestants of an upcoming season - Matthew Mawhinney, Harry Johnson, and Beaux Greenslade - were named in the media in May 2021 following proceedings in Uxbridge Magistrates' Court. The three were arrested after landing at Heathrow in February, returning from filming on Turks & Caicos. Mawhinney is the son of current Commonwealth Secretary-General Baroness Scotland.
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