I'm A Celebrity winner says the show is 'just horrible' now
Former jungle king Tony Blackburn has spoken out about the new I'm a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! spin-off set in South Africa, which started this week on ITV.
Blackburn won over the nation in 2002 and was crowned the winner of the first-ever series of the celebrity survival competition set in the Australian jungle.
The DJ and presenter has shared his thoughts on the all-star I'm A Celeb... South Africa special, saying that he found recent scenes with Diversity star Jordan Banjo "horrible" to watch.
Speaking to The Sun he said: "I loved doing the show, and I hate to criticise, but I was watching it last night and it's just horrible."
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Referring to an episode of the show that aired earlier this week, where dancer and presenter Banjo had to take part in a Bushtucker trial and eat a lamb's testicle, he added: "Eating bits of penis is revolting. I don't think that is entertainment. I can't watch it. I turn away.
"I don't want to see celebrities vomiting on TV, especially after eating antelopes."
Banjo and supermodel Janice Dickinson had to dine on a course of crocodile anus, goat lung, ostrich testicle and lamb testicle in the hopes of winning meals for their fellow campmates.
Vegetarian Blackburn said that the eating challenge was "awful" and that the producers have lost touch with what the programme once was.
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"I don't preach vegetarianism," he said.
"People can do what they want, but we've seen it all before, it's a bit old hat now and the shock value is not there anymore.
"Last night he swallowed a pig's bollock and said he could feel the hairs – it's awful."
Blackburn has confirmed that he will not return to the show as a contestant.
He divulged: "This is what the producers don't quite understand – I think that the strength of the programme is watching how people react to each other, that's the fun of it.
Watching @imacelebrity South Africa and am wondering if watching celebrities eating disgusting things is really entertainment, this has all been done before and probably enough now.What do you think.
— Tony Blackburn (@tonyblackburn) April 25, 2023
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"I'm 80 years old now but if they did ask me to take part, I'd say no, I wouldn't want to do it again."
Without naming any previous victors, he said he wasn't the only one, adding: "I'm talking to one or two other people who won it, and I don't think most of them would."
I'm A Celeb... South Africa started on April 24, and along with Banjo, other celebrities competing include the likes of Paul Burrell, Carol Vorderman, Shaun Ryder, Helen Flanagan, Fatima Whitbread, Phil Tufnell and Amir Khan.
I'm a Celebrity… South Africa airs on Mondays-Fridays at 9pm on ITV1 and streams on ITVX.
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