What's going on between Olivia and Zara on Love Island? All the villa drama explained

Need a recap on the Olivia and Zara 'Love Island' drama? Here's exactly what went down...

Olivia and Zara Love Island: Olivia and Zara chat on the terrace in Love Island 2023/ in a pink/orange template
(Image credit: ITV/ Lifted Entertaiment)

The Olivia and Zara Love Island drama has viewers glued to their screens and things are only set to get worse if Love Island First Look is anything to go by—but what exactly went down between them? 

So far, season 9 has not been disappointing on the drama front, from Tanyel stealing Ron from Lana in the latest recoupling to two new Love Island Australia alums entering the villa—and don't even get us started on the winter Love Island 2023 memes

There has so far been no shortage of icy chats and dramatic music—but two islanders, in particular, seem to be supplying the tensest scenes. Olivia and bombshell Zara have been at odds since the moment she entered the villa, but what exactly has caused the rift—and why is it set to get worse?

If you're in need of a recap, here's exactly what's gone done and be sure to suss out how to watch Love Island UK to catch up on the latest installment!

What's the deal with Olivia and Zara's Love Island drama?

For those who don't know, new Love Island bombshell Zara entered the show alongside David in episode 3, with the pair then taking Ron and Tanya on dates.

After settling into the villa however, Ron made it clear he was only interested in getting to know Lana, with Zara then deciding to get to know fellow bombshell (the series' first) Tom—who was at that time, coupled up with Olivia Hawkins.

Here's when things started to get a little awkward! During a villa game of Beer Pong, Zara was dared to kiss the islander she wanted to couple up with, which saw her snog Tom—before she was then dared to kiss both cheeks of the islander she thinks is the most two-faced.

Any guesses who she picked? If you said Olivia, you'd be correct. Zara chose Olivia, which did not go down well. The actress then stormed off with several of her fellow islanders, before she and Zara then went for a chat to clear the air.

During this one-on-one, Olivia said that she felt Zara deliberately tried to humiliate her, which she then denied.

After said chat, things seemed to be resolved—until Olivia took Zara for yet another private convo, where she said things still felt tense between them and wanted to quash any awkwardness—only for Zara to reveal that Tom said he was leaning way more towards her than Olivia. This then led to a chilly chat between Tom and Olivia, where she said she felt like she was being 'mugged off' (a classic Love Island quote).

The following morning, Zara revealed she has Tom had shared a kiss on the terrace and Olivia did not look best pleased...

Now, that's all the build-up covered—in episode 8 however things are set to get even worse, with First Look teasing an all-out row and ensuing tears.

From what we can tell—there's a game of Never Have I Ever which causes even more bad blood between the girls, with Zara saying: "Do you think I've flown 11 hours from England to piss you off? Get over yourself Liv, get over yourself." 

Liv then responds: "You're just trying to cause drama right now—f****** not having it. "

Ron can then be seen trying to diffuse the falling out, but both Zara and Olivia storm off—with Olivia then breaking down into tears.

So, it's safe to say they're not going to be BFFs in the next Love Island installment...

Fan reactions to the Olivia and Zara drama

So far, Love Island viewers are living for the drama, because isn't that why we all tune in anyway? 

One tweeted: "YOU THINK IVE FLOWN 11 HOURS TO PISS YOU OFF?!” Nah Zara, INJECT IT!"

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While another commented: "I actually like Tom and Zara together."

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Do Olivia and Zara know each other outside of Love Island?

Fans are also now speculating that the pair actually have a history IRL, after some internet sleuths spotted a very telling Instagram interaction between them from back in 2020!

On one of Zara's Instagram posts, Liv commented"Fave photo of you 😍" to which Zara replied, "my babes ❤️." This has understandably sparked rumors they may have actually been friends or at least acquaintances before the Love Island stint, which could be contributing to the tensions!

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As one Love Island fan tweeted: "Olivia and Zara beefing in the villa with the underlying fact that they know each other on the outside."

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Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team and has recently earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ. She has a background in design, having studied Illustration at Plymouth University but has taken a leap into the world of journalism after always having a passion for writing. She currently writes pieces on beauty, trends, fashion, and entertainment for GoodTo and My Imperfect Life. She also tests and reviews beauty and skincare products and tries out the latest TikTok hacks for My Imperfect Life.


Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.