Love Island's Tyler Dishes About His Connection With Sereniti And More - Exclusive Interview

As far as reality TV is concerned, the genre is privy to some iconic — and very memorable — contestants. Think about "The Bachelorette" star "Grocery Store" Joe, who — in one episode — made a brand for himself and became one of the franchise's biggest catches. Or there's Lauren and Cameron from "Love Is Blind," who have absolutely proven that love really is about the heart (not to mention that they're both gorgeous). While stars might not get a ton of camera time given the demands of the cast, some of them know how to make an entrance, and that was the case of "Love Island" contestant Tyler Radziszewski.

Tyler — and his hair — made a bombshell entrance after the original cast members of "Love Island" Season 4 had already settled into a rhythm, and he quickly set his sights on Sereniti Springs. What occurred after the two were taken by each other was hours of conversation — which we didn't always see pan out on-screen — and a connection that was slow and steady.

But as any fan of "Love Island" will tell you, things can quickly change with new additions. As Chazz and Bria Bryant entered the villa, Sereniti's desires shifted gears, leaving Tyler out in the cold. While he wasn't particularly worried about their connection going awry, the long-haired heartthrob found himself on the chopping block and was eventually sent packing. After his exit from the villa, Tyler took the time to sit down with us for an exclusive interview, dishing about what really happened between him and Sereniti, if he had any regrets from his time on the show, and what he's learned about himself moving forward.

Tyler was originally a fan of Love Island before being cast

Before we jump into the nitty-gritty of the show and your time on "Love Island," tell me a little bit about what motivated you to apply for the show in the beginning. Were you a fan beforehand? Walk me through that early process.

Honestly, it was pretty wild for me, because me and my older brother actually used to watch the U.K. version. Then I watched Season 2 in Vegas, and I actually never applied. I got a random DM from a recruiter on a Sunday. I thought it was a joke at first, and then I looked her up — I looked up her name, and it was legit. She FaceTimed me to make sure that I was a real person and everything. I was like, "Why not? I'm 23, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity." I'm happy I stuck through it and did it. I'm extremely thankful for the opportunity. It was a great experience.

You were a fan of at least the U.K. version beforehand. What was it like going from a fan viewer perspective to now all of the sudden finding yourself in the villa?

It was absolutely insane. I don't even know if I still have words for it. When I walked in for my intro, when I came in as the bombshell, my mind was in a million places. I was like, "I was literally watching this show on TV a while ago, and now I'm in it." I couldn't wrap my mind around it for the longest time. I honestly don't even think it still has set in yet, but like I said, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity; it was the best time ever. It still hasn't set in. It's so crazy to try to comprehend what just happened.

What was it about Sereniti that caught Tyler's attention?

Before we get into your connections, because you connected with Val [Bragg] and Sereniti [Springs] — what were you looking for in anything romantic before you entered the villa? Did you have specific expectations, or were you looking to take things as they came?

Honestly, I wanted to go in with no game plan, no expectations or anything, because I wanted to be my genuine self and take things as it comes [and not] try to force anything. Don't try to do anything that I wouldn't do in the outside world; do what feels natural to me.

I went in there, I'm 23 — the end goal was to walk out of there with a girl that I could take home to mom and dad, but it didn't work out that way, sadly. I took it day by day [and] did what felt good to me. I didn't go in with any expectations. I wanted to feel everything out [and] see what came naturally. I'm more of a shy, reserved guy, too. It definitely helped me get out of my comfort zone.

Talk about a crash course.

Oh, my gosh — definitely. Doing that and then talking to everybody ... I ultimately went with what I felt the most comfortable with, what felt natural to me.

You had an initial connection with Val, and she went home ... but a bond between yourself and Sereniti took off. What was it about her that initially caught your attention?

I'm a more shy, reserved person. From the first conversation I had with Sereniti, I caught myself smiling ear to ear. I felt like I was at home. She was such a genuine girl that I could tell she was trying to make my life easier in general — make me feel more comfortable. She didn't make me feel like I'm this new bombshell that just came in and the OGs are there. She did such an amazing job with that. 

She was such a caring person. Our first conversation was my first night there, and it was an hour and a half or something like that. It felt like it was just five minutes. There was no silence. We were talking the entire time about anything and everything. She was making me laugh [and] smile, and we really hit it off immediately after that first conversation.

Tyler only did what he was comfortable with when it came to Sereniti

An aspect of your connection and relationship with her came down to displaying affection. In what ways do you think you got caught up in keeping your feelings more to yourself than to her?

That's naturally how I am as a person. I always want to be a gentleman no matter what, too. I'd rather take things slow than go at a faster pace. Honestly, I was doing what I was comfortable with. It was still a newer relationship. I was getting more and more comfortable every day, but I wanted to pride myself on still being a gentleman, being who I am ... We're together 24 hours too. You don't always see what's going on with us either.

Along those lines, it was moving at a pace that I felt was comfortable for me. She would help, too, making the first moves and stuff. She was always a sweetheart about it, and if I ever didn't want to do anything — not that I was ever in that situation — but she was always super respectful about me and my feelings and where I was comfortable with.

Well, on a show like "Love Island" — or the reality TV dating scene in general — you don't always have time on your side, right? It's a very fast-paced, very fast-moving environment to try to find a genuine connection in. I would imagine that comes with a unique set of challenges.

Absolutely, yeah. We always would say every morning when we would be eating breakfast or something, we got to live every day like it's our last day in the villa. You never know when your time could be up. You could get a text, "Hey, there's a recoupling tonight," or something like that. We went in with that mindset of, "Okay, some of us are more shy and reserved," but you got to go at it full steam ahead. You can't second guess yourself — go with what feels the best with you and run with it.

Tyler wasn't initially worried about being sent home

When Chazz and Bria [Bryant] entered the villa, did you get a sense that anything between yourself and Sereniti [Springs] could potentially go sideways with another new addition? Or were you trying to keep an open mind?

I know how the show works, so we don't ever get comfortable with everyone coupling up really fast, but I feel like me and Sereniti were at a good point in our connection where we were comfortable with each other. We were invested in each other, so I wasn't necessarily worried about somebody coming in and turning her head, which ... anybody can turn their head, too. You still have to have that in the back of your mind.

I was pretty confident with where we were with each other, [so] it was like, "You know what? If somebody turns her head, more power to her. It's her life too. She can do what she wants." But I was pretty confident with where we were that I wasn't really worrying about that.

Of course, we know what happened. I don't have to walk you through that process again, but before we get into your feelings on the matter and looking back on the show in retrospect, if you could go back, would you change anything about your time with Sereniti? Do you regret anything, or are you happy with how it panned out?

Honestly, the only regret I have is that I wasn't able to have a longer conversation with her when I found out I was leaving, because I was still trying to process that, say goodbye to everybody. It's a lot to take in at once. From a regret standpoint, that would probably be the only thing. 

But I was extremely genuine to myself. I was who I am in the real world. Obviously, I would've been more affectionate. We would've gone closer and developed our relationship more if I was in there for more time. But I'd rather move it at a slow, steady pace where we're both comfortable too than try to rush it. That can always create animosity or problems, stuff like that. I definitely don't have any regrets with how I was in the villa. I stayed true to myself. I keep saying it, but definitely, looking back at it, I wish I would've paid her some more affection, watching the episodes.

But you did what you felt was genuine in the moment, and I'm sure there's a big part of you that's glad that you stuck to your convictions in that sense?

100%. Yep.

I've never been on a reality TV show. I cover the spectrum of shows quite frequently and have always thought to myself, "I'd like to think that I'd be 110% of myself even if a camera was following me around."

You don't even think that there's cameras. You got to keep it in the back of your head, like, "I'm not being recorded, this isn't TV." Just live it like it's your actual life. That was the best part for me — I pretended there were no cameras and did my own thing, pretty much.

Tyler reflects on what he learned from the show

Now that you are settling out of your time from the show, what would you say that you've learned about yourself or what you'll take from this experience moving forward?

Honestly, the biggest thing that I'm going to take away from it is that I can do things that weren't necessarily comfortable to who I was before. Nobody's going to be super comfortable coming in as the first guy bombshell into a villa of 12 people that already know each other. I'm a more shy, reserved guy, so that was definitely something that I can take away from it — because I'm like, "Okay, I can be in these kinds of situations, it is possible, and I could still be myself." I'm not overly shy. I'm not trying too hard or anything like that.

[I've also learned about] talking more intimately about feelings with everybody and asking the hard questions, and developing relationships with people from all over the United States that I've never met before. Making those connections with people was something that I'll always remember. I can do this. I can be comfortable. I can get in the swing of everything. Just be a nice guy; be who you are. People will accept you no matter what. Those are definitely two of the biggest things that I'm going to take away from my time there.

Tyler dishes about what's up next for him

Fans were very sad to see you — and your hair — go. Even browsing on Twitter, you can see fans say, "I was so upset that Tyler left. I loved his hair." What's that feeling like now that people are talking about you on such a broad scale?

It is wild, looking at the hashtags and GIFs of yourself — Googling yourself, reading comments about me. First and foremost, I'm so blessed, grateful, [and] thankful for all the fans, everybody that's watched, everybody that's shown me love and support. It is the best feeling in the world, and I'm so appreciative for it. 

Like I said earlier, too, I'm still waiting for it to set in. I haven't fully been able to wrap my mind around it, but it definitely is a great feeling. I'm over-joyous with everybody's support, love. It's been a great feeling. I'm waiting for it to finally, completely set in so I can sit back and be like, "Wow."

Once you have settled down from this whirlwind of an experience, what is next for you? What's on the horizon?

Well, I'm starting my doctorate in occupational therapy at the end of August. Then I'm going to take that how it comes, work hard for that and then do anything on the side — maybe get into some modeling or some shampoo commercials, or maybe apply for some other shows. I don't know right now. I'm going to take the next few days [and] think over all my options. I don't have a for-sure, set-in-stone option yet. But I'm definitely happy to have these different options and have the power to create my next chapter in life, which is a great feeling.

Could you ever have predicted you'd be in this kind of situation?

Never. That's why every day, I wake up with the biggest smile on my face. It's an awesome experience, everything about it. I got nothing but positive things to say about it, and it really is life-changing. Now I have these different opportunities, options and everything. I can write my next chapter in life, which is great.

"Love Island" USA Season 4 drops new episodes Tuesdays through Sundays on NBC's Peacock, with recap episodes releasing on Saturdays.

This interview was edited for clarity.