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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at JMU chapter.

The most recent season of the wildly popular dating show, Love Island USA, had one of the most compelling casts yet. Throughout the show’s six-week run, couples compete in challenges, mingle with new islanders, and even take part in the iconic “Casa Amor” relationship test. I will be ranking each contestant (excluding the bombshells who did not make it out of Casa Amor) from best to worst, based on their personalities and actions during the show.

IMani Wheeler

Simultaneously beautiful and hilarious, Imani stole the show from the moment she walked into the villa right up to her premature dumping. She supported her fellow girls as they navigated Casa Amor drama, and ultimately deserved much better than she got. Let’s hope she went home a winner from Love Island Games!

Kenzo Nudo

Kenzo’s relationship with Carmen was undoubtedly the purest; he was immediately infatuated with her from the moment he entered the villa! His quiet, gentle charm stole Carmen’s heart and sent them souring to the finale. Bravo, Kenzo!

Carsten Bergersen (“Bergie”)

Without a doubt, the most talked-about cast member on this season of Love Island USA, Bergie’s Midwestern boy-next-door persona was in stark contrast with many other contestants, who were already well-versed in the dating scene. His lack of experience with relationships was made up ten-fold with his chivalry, goofy sense of humor, and unwavering dedication to finding “the one”. America loves you, Bergie!

Hannah Wright

Hannah, one half of the winning couple, is hands down the funniest Islander on this show. Hannah balances hyping Bergie up, falling in love with Marco, and giving Keenan the stink-eye like a professional. Her outspoken nature paired with her, and Marco’s beautiful romance make Hannah a definite stand-out.

Marco Donatelli

Who could follow the wonderful Hannah besides her knight in shining armor, Marco? During the show’s first few episodes, I was skeptical of Marco. He came across as a bit of a player, too preoccupied with physical intimacy to form a genuine connection with his first couple (Miss Destiny!). But Hannah seemed to flip a switch in him. Marco quickly became smitten with Hannah and adorably tried to manage his fellow guys’ questionable behavior during Casa Amor. The transformation of the year award goes to Marco!

kassy Castillo

Kassy is hilarious, slightly shady, and very much so living in her own world. Her self-assuredness and ability to bounce back after being done dirty (more on that later) are admirable, not to mention the fact that she is gorgeous. There was never a doubt in my mind that Kassy was being her true self on this show, which made me love her so much more.

Harrison Luna

Harrison was a bit of a wildcard; I couldn’t tell whether he was genuine but private or only there to play the game and make some cash. Despite doubts about his motives, Harrison acted as a constant stabilizing force in the villa with his cool, calm, relaxed demeanor.

Carmen Kocourek

Carmen and Kenzo are perfect for each other, and you cannot convince me otherwise. Carmen’s steadfast sense of confidence and self-worth were refreshing, but also led her to come off as a bit of a mean-girl at times. All in all, though, Carmen was a fantastic addition to the island!

Kay Kay Gray

Okay, listen: I LOVED Kay Kay. She was funny, beautiful, and a good friend to her fellow islanders. But, the ways things went down between her and Keenan left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth. Almost all of the blame falls on Keenan (hence his placement in this ranking), but Kay Kay’s strong sense of self-respect seemed to go out the window as soon as he spewed a half-hearted defense of his behavior. Where did Miss “Soul Ties is Crazy” go?

Johnnie Garcia

Johnnie was 100% villainized by the Villa girls post-Casa Amor! Leonardo’s behavior should not have been understood as a commentary on Johnnie’s character. To me, Johnnie seemed like a contestant who was truly there to find love and thought there was something of substance between her and Leo. However, her short tenure on the show and seeming coupling of convenience with Scott prevents her from being higher on this list.

Taylor Smith

Oh, Taylor, the one to finally rein in the Bergster. That’s right, Miss Taylor is the lucky lady who ends up with Bergie! Taylor doesn’t necessarily stand out when she first enters the Villa as a Casa girl, but her connection with Bergie steadily grows as he becomes more confident in himself and she begins to open up to him. Their final declarations of love are 100% the most genuine I have ever heard on this show, and Taylor ends up being a quintessential member of the cast.

Destiny Davis

In all honesty, Destiny didn’t seem too concerned with finding love. She was coupled up with several different boys, but her connections never seemed to penetrate the surface level. Destiny was hilarious and, as a member of the OG 10 Islanders, she felt vital to the show’s plot. However, her high standards and insistence on long-term connections before any sort of physical intimacy or commitment (while important in real life!), might have deterred her from advancing further in the show.

Jonah Allman

Jonah was an interesting addition to the cast; his goofy disposition contributed to his appeal, but he ultimately came off to me as a bit of a phony. He seemed to be trying hard to make the other Islands think he was this quirky, silly guy, when ultimately his quips were received with awkward laughter or just plain silence. I also thought his relationship with Taylor C. seemed to come out of nowhere!

Kyle Darden

We truly don’t get much of Kyle in this show; he is arguably the person on this list with the least amount of screen time. Even so, Kyle’s charming personality shines through. I truly believe he didn’t get a fair shot at finding love on the show, and I wish him and Destiny all the best as they continue to explore their relationship off-camera!

Taylor CHemlka

Taylor C. is another Islander we see relatively little of; her relationship with Jonah, as I mentioned in reference to him, didn’t appear to be backed by the kind of evident chemistry we see from almost every other couple. Despite this, Taylor remains a good friend and support to her fellow Casa girls, especially Johnnie, when they wade through the waters of post-Casa resentment.

Mattia Marcantuoni

In the end, I felt pity for Mattia. He was brought back to the villa by Kassy expecting a fair chance at getting to know her further, but ended up acting as more of a shoulder to cry on after Kassy finds out about Leo and Johnnie. He quickly becomes the background noise to Kassy and Leo’s vibrant instrumentals. I hope he’s having better luck at love outside of the villa!

Isiah Harayda (“Zay”)

Isiah is another Casa boy who I feel wasn’t brought back with a full understanding of his lady’s situation in the villa; namely, of Destiny’s prior relationship with Mike. When Destiny insistently questions Mike about his actions during Casa Amor, Isiah seems truly surprised by her concern. He wasn’t privy to her situation with Mike still being “open”, and when he tries to discuss this with her, she continually cuts him off and walks away from him.

Jasmine Sklavanitis

Jasmine was the very first dumping from the island, so we don’t get very much of her aside from her friendship with Anna and sorta-kinda relationship with Victor. Ultimately, in the few episodes she starred in, she came off as a bit obnoxious, and less concerned with finding true love in her pursuit of physical intimacy.

Emily Chavez

Emily was eliminated from the Island along with her then-man, Harrison. I didn’t particularly love Emily, but I didn’t dislike her either. However, after leaving the island, she has been posting cutesy TikToks with one of my least favorite Islanders, Mike. Her almost immediate jump into a relationship with Mike after her insistent loyalty to Harrison seemed a bit off to me!

Scott Van-Der-Sluis

Scott is… well, Scott. Scott has starred on Love Island UK, this season of Love Island USA, and has been announced as a cast member for Love Island Games. The guy just can’t get enough love! Unfortunately, all of his attempts at connections, particularly his connection with Johnnie, came off as very stilted and forced to me as a viewer. His continued appearance on Love Island shows makes me question whether he is truly after love, or simply fame and recognition.

Anna Kurdys

I have what one might call a love-hate relationship with Anna. On the one hand, she was 100% done dirty by Kassy and Leo. On the other hand, her continuing to forgive and get angry again and forgive and get angry again felt unnecessary. Kassy certainly breached the girl code (hence her aforementioned shadiness), but if nobody ever broke the girl code, these shows couldn’t stay afloat for longer than a few episodes. Her inability to truly move forward even episodes later combined with her obnoxious attitude is the reason she falls so low on this list.

Leonardo Dionicio

Leo is the perfect example of the maxim, “Once a cheater, always a cheater”. Leonardo went behind Anna’s back with Kassy, and then went behind Kassy’s back with Johnnie, and then went behind Johnnie’s back with Kassy! How he charmed his way out of it each time, I will truly never know; the fact that he made it to the finale is even more baffling. I hope Leo learns from this pattern of mistakes and treats Kassy better in the outside world.

Mike Starks

I have one thing to say about Mike: Nobody, and I mean NOBODY, talks to Sarah Hyland like that. Full stop.

Victor Gonzalez

Victor’s treatment of Carmen and Bergie was disgusting. In the end, his disbelief that Carmen was interested in Bergie exposed his fragile masculinity and led to his rightful dumping from the island. He lacked the respect and decency to treat anyone, whether romantically or not, as they deserved to be treated.

Keenan Anunay

I don’t want to keep piling on the Keenan hate-train that is steamrolling the internet right now, but he is truly, without a doubt, the worst person on this show. His treatment of Kay Kay was despicable, and his method of “apology” (getting defensive and flipping it on her) had me seething. In the end, I wish them nothing but the best; but, if that’s how he acts on a reality TV show, how does he act when the cameras aren’t rolling?

Grace is a junior at James Madison University, majoring in English and Writing, Rhetoric, & Technical Communication with a minor in Creative Writing. She enjoys reading contemporary romance novels, doing yoga, and listening to music!