Claudia Winkleman picks two dramatic Traitors moments that convinced her show was going to be ‘special’

Claudia Winkleman has named two moments from The Traitors that made her realise the show was going to be “special”.

The reality competition series began in December 2022 and, despite a slow start, became a ratings hit for the BBC thanks to feverish praise on social media.

Speaking at the 2023 Broadcasting Press Guild Awards in London, host Winkleman said that she knew the show had the potential to catch on thanks to some big moments during filming in Scotland.

“We did not see any of this coming,” she said. “We went to Inverness and made a little show where people couldn’t trust anyone. We were like, ‘Never mind – we had fun.’ And then somethig sort of magic happened and Twitter took over.”

When she was asked when she knew “we were onto something special”, Winkleman replied: “I think probably the first roundtable. So we were up there and the surroundings were beautiful, there was a peacock and I was wearing quite a lot of tweed – and then the first roundtable happened and they kicked out Nicky.”

She continued: “Nicky was there for a real reason, an important reason, and I thought, ‘Hold on a minute, just hold on a second – something’s happening here.’”

Nicky had made no secret of the fact that she was hoping to use the show’s prize fund in order to purchase a myoelectric model prosthetic hand that she could control with her thoughts.

Winkleman recalled another roundtable moment in which executive producer Sarah Fay was forced to step in, telling her through an earpiece, to “watch” her breathing.

Claudia Winklemas presenting ‘The Traitors’ (BBC)
Claudia Winklemas presenting ‘The Traitors’ (BBC)

“I’ll never forget when Will and Amanda both evicted Alyssa – when they turned on a fellow traitor,” she said. “I just heard in my ear, very quietly, ‘Watch your breathing.’ And I thought, this is something else. I don’t know what is happening, but this is something.”

The series will return for a second run. Series one is currently available to stream on BBC iPlayer alongside a US version, which is presented by Alan Cumming.