Review: Gino's Cooking Up Love is the dating show where host Gino D'Acampo falls in love with himself

There were some singletons looking for love on ITV this week, but judging by Gino’s Cooking Up Love (ITV, Weds/Thurs, 9pm), the only one finding it is our Italian host.
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Gino D’Acampo, you see, has fallen deeply in love with himself. The perma-smiling Italian chef wants to bring romance into the lives of a bunch of forlorn, hapless love dunces – this is because, he tells us, he’s found love, his parents found love, his grandparents found love. In short, the D’Acampo family is so full of love they can barely cope and need to spread some around, like pate de foie gras on a piece of melba toast.

And so we’re off to Gino’s Italian villa, where he lovingly makes an espresso, lit by mellow sunlight dappling the rolling hills, his tan that perfect shade of burnt sienna, his teeth glistening whitely.

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There, he hopes to bring people together by using cooking as an icebreaker. He’ll give couples thrown together by this Le Corbusier of coupledom a recipe and a few hints and let them get on with it.

Gino D'Acampo hosts Gino's Cooking Up LoveGino D'Acampo hosts Gino's Cooking Up Love
Gino D'Acampo hosts Gino's Cooking Up Love

Meantime, he offers advice to these long-term losers in love – advice which rarely gets above the level of ‘phwoar, get in there, give ’em a kiss’.

Gino, it seems, operates at a peak of sexual excitement that it’s all he can do to stop snogging himself. He has to make do with demonstrating his potency by sitting astride a massive, throbbing motorcycle, inviting the viewer to come up with the metaphor themselves.

It’s all slightly uncomfortable viewing, as Gino’s contestants mug their way through eating spaghetti Lady and the Tramp-style or endure his off-colour gags. Gino certainly loves himself, but you can’t love this show.

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Of course, forget Gino and his risotto of romance, the only reality show to watch at the moment is The Traitors (BBC1, Tues-Thurs, 9pm), which has gone from good to absolutely brilliant. The growing stress among faithful and traitors alike is coming to a boil, and the round table sequences are just thrillingly tense.

Sheridan Smith pitched up in a new comedy this week Rosie Molloy Gives Up Everything (Sky Comedy, Weds, 10pm). I say comedy, but there was a dark undercurrent to this show about a borderline drug addict, borderline alcoholic, borderline everything which gave the jokes a real edge.

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