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Images: Policy Exchange [CC BY 2.0], via Flickr. By Gace Gay for Research Professional News

Ivory Tower: Things are hotting up in the reality TV hit of the summer

Narrator: Previously on Gove Island, there were goodbyes…

Matt: I need to go spend more time with someone else’s family.

Narrator: And a big hello…

Sajid: Guess who’s back boys?

Narrator: Tonight, let the games begin.

Titles and theme music

Narrator: New arrival Sajid is turning heads with his plans for not wearing masks by the pool. Some of the boys are discussing the villa’s latest addition over breakfast.

Gavin: He’s no yoongster.

Kwasi: I don’t know what he’s doing back, bit awks for Rishi.

Gavin: I hope he doesn’t make a move on my patch.

Kwasi: Wouldn’t be surprised, he’s been minister for everything else.

Gavin: To be honest, I wouldn’t mind swapping, just until the A-level results are out of the way.

Kwasi: Think he’ll want to get his hands on what I’ve got?

Gavin: The science budget?

Kwasi: Yeah, for health innovation and that.

Gavin: He’s in here to crack on, so maybe.

Kwasi: Here comes Rishi.

Gavin: Alright mate? How you feeling about the newbie?

Rishi: Bit weird when your Ex turns up. Don’t think he’s anyone’s type though.

Gavin: Well, he wasn’t when he ran in the leadership election.

Diary Room [Rishi speaks to camera]

Rishi: That’s the last thing I need, seeing the Saj again. Everything was going really well until he turned up. Dom’s not even here to trick him into leaving.

Narrator: Over on the swing chair Mandy and Mickey are putting the world to rights.

Mickey: What’s your type then?

Mandy: I prefer Times New Roman.

Mickey: No, I mean what you after?

Mandy: A culture change in research with no place for bullies.

Mickey: Don’t mention bullies in here.

Mandy: I’m glad Dom left the villa early.

Mickey: Watch yourself, here comes Priti.

Priti: Mornin’ ladies, I’m not sure about the new arrival.

Mickey: Because he’s not your type?

Priti: No, because he’s arrived on the island without paperwork or a job offer.

Mandy: He’s no Tier 1 material.

Priti: He’s come in here with all the shoutin’ and laughin’ and unrealistic promises.

Mandy: That doesn’t do it for you?

Priti: As you know, I’m against gestures of all kinds.

Mickey: What would you say if he got down on one knee for you?

Priti: Are you a Marxist?

Mickey: Mandy was just saying she can’t stand some of the bullies in here.

[Awkward silence]

Priti: Amanda, I want to use your hair straighteners.

Mandy: But you broke them last time.

Priti: Are you arguing with me?

Mandy: No, of course not.

Priti: That’s better.

Narrator: Over at the pool, Chris and Paddy are chewing the fat.

Paddy: So, then I said to Bill Gates, look maybe we could let you put a microchip in the booster shot.

Chris: I’m a bit worried Paddy.

Paddy: You’re always worried, Chris.

Chris: Things could be about to heat up.

Paddy: With the new arrival in the villa?

Chris: No, have you seen the latest data on infections?

Diary room [Michael speaks to camera]

Michael: It has been a very difficult time since I came in here. I’ve been with Sarah so long that the separation has really hit me hard. That’s why we would like to ask everyone at this time for the privacy that she’d always denied everyone else in her newspaper column.

Narrator: New boy Saj is getting to know some of the ladies.

Saj: So, who are you looking to crack on with?

Liz: I’m working on a comprehensive trade deal with San Marino, and after that the big prize is a long-term relationship with a real player who is really into us.

Saj: Who is it?

Liz: Malta.

Saj: I thought they were already with someone.

Liz: Yeah, they are in some kind of union that sounds great. Apparently, you can see lots of different people without having to make individual commitments.

Saj: EU?

Liz: Yeah, sounds a bit yuk doesn’t it?

[A loud ping is heard]

Mickey: I’ve got a text.

[All the islanders gather around the fire pit]

Mandy: What does it say?

Mickey: “You have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19. You should self-isolate for 10 days”.

Liz: That means you can’t leave the house.

Mickey: No change there then.

[Another ping is heard]

Mandy: I’ve got a text!

Priti: What does it say?

Mandy: “It’s time for Mandy and Paddy to get ready for their first date #SpecialAdviser #HotlikeABunsenBurner #MeltingPoint”.

[Squeals of excitement all round, the girls go to help Mandy get ready, the boys go to help Paddy]

The Girls Room:

Priti: What you wearin’?

Mandy: I was thinking of the yellow jump suit.

Priti: That’s nice. I want it. Give it to me.

Mandy: Yes, of course.

The Boys Room:

Chris: You’ll be taking precautions?

Paddy: It’s only a first date.

Chris: Yes, but still, wear a mask, wash your hands, and sit two metres apart.

The Girls Room:

Liz: It’s so exciting, where is Mickey, she’s missing it all.

Mandy: I think she’s self-isolating.

Diary Room: [Mickey speaks to camera]

Mickey: This is the only place in the villa where I can quarantine from everyone else. I’ll need to stay in here for the next fortnight.

Michael: I’m still in here, feeling lonely.

Mickey: Oh God.

The Boys Room:

Kwasi: How are you going to play it?

Paddy: Any advice?

Gavin: When I’m on a date, I like just to be myself.

Paddy: But what does your date think of that?

Kwasi: What kind of food do you think you’ll have?

Paddy: Maybe just mains and sides. I’m not sure what I should ask for.

Chris: Next side please.

[The islanders gather at the villa door and Mandy and Paddy prepare to go out on their date. The islanders sing, “They are going on a date, going on a date…”]

Priti: They are goin’ on a date.

[A ping is heard]

Liz: I’ve got a text!

Saj: What does it say?

Liz: “Dear islanders, the Balearic Islands will move from the Green list to the Amber list at midnight tonight. You have six hours to make it to the airport to avoid 14 days quarantine in the UK. That’s what you get for not inviting me, Yours, Grant #AmberGambler #MileHighClub #MyPassportSaysMichaelGreen.”

Paddy: Quick, everyone pack your bags.

Mandy: But what about our date?

Chris: I keep telling everyone, data not dates.

[Another ping is heard]

Gavin: I’ve got a text!

Kwasi: I’ve heard some of your speeches, best keep it to yourself.

Gavin: “Islanders, do not go anywhere. The public have been voting on their least favourite couple. #MinistryOfLove”.

[Another ping]

Rishi: I’ve got a text, “The public have had their say and it has been decided that you will all have to stay on the island, all summer, in quarantine. #WillofthePeople”.

[Another ping]

Kwasi: I’ve got a text, “There will also be a new arrival in the villa. The public have voted and decided they should quarantine with you. #LevellingUp #SwipeRight.”

Chris: Oh dear, I have a bad feeling about this.

Paddy: What’s new?

[The villa doorbell rings, and Gavin opens it]

Boris: Phwoar! Salutations islanders! Let Bozza see the talent. What do you think of my mankini? I borrowed it from Putin, apparently he wears it when wrestling. I’ve mugged off the technology lessons and am ready to crack on. This isn’t filmed is it? If it is, hello Carrie darling, just nipped out for a pint of milk. Bozza’s catching feelings, who wants to see my Covid passport?”

[Titles and music]

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