'Rude' Jason Gardiner criticised by 'Dancing on Ice' fans for Didi Conn insults

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·TV Reporter
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  • Jason Gardiner
    Australian theatre producer
  • Didi Conn
    Didi Conn
    American actress


Dancing on Ice is back, and acid-tongued judge Jason Gardiner has wasted no time in launching straight back into his usual tough criticism.

But some viewers feel that the skating show’s Mr Nasty has gone too far this time, with insults levelled at Grease star Didi Conn overstepping the mark in fans’ opinions.

Conn, 67, is a contestant in this series of the ITV contest and took on a Grease-themed routine in which she wore her original Pink Ladies jacket from her role as Frenchy, complete with mustard stain from the film’s set.

Fans were impressed by her flexibility and bravery on the ice given her age, but couldn’t believe it when Gardiner laid into her for “dining out” on the movie’s song ‘We Go Together’ which she skated to.

He said: “My family are going to disown me over this, but I feel a little bit conned tonight because you’ve dined out on this song for at least 40 years.”

Conn looked taken aback and spluttered “not really”, but he continued: “It’s been synonymous with you, surely. So I would imagine you would have more Christmas and attack in the execution of the choreography.”

Even Gardiner seemed to realise he’d said too much, as he ended with: “I love you. I’m going to hate myself in the morning.”

Viewers were appalled by the ice judge’s rudeness in his critiques.

Conn, who had given a film-star worthy performance full of smiles and energy, joked when she came off the ice that she needed an oil can for her joints.

The other judges were much kinder to Conn, who whilst being far from the best skater, is the show’s biggest signing this year and gave an impressive debut for a 67-year-old new to the ice.

Former Neighbours star Mark Little was voted to take on the skate-off next week against the next episode’s worst performer.

Reality TV queen Gemma Collins managed to get through her debut despite having suffered what she called a “major fall” just an hour before the show, and ex-Strictly pro dancer James Jordan topped the scores with an impressive 30.5 out of 40.

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