Viewers criticise Dec's round of applause request for drink-driver Ant McPartlin
The finale of Saturday Night Takeaway’s current series went off without a hitch this weekend, but it was after the cameras had stopped rolling that got people angry.
With the show having taken place in Florida, USA and whisking lucky competition winners there for the experience, the show, presented by Declan Donnelly, featured live performances from Jason Derulo and presenting support from the likes of Stephen Mulhern and Scarlett Moffatt.
Once the televised programme had ended, Dec spoke to the crowd of enthused fans: ‘It’s been a fun series but as we get to to end here it’s tinged with a little bit of sadness,’ Dec, 42, said as he addressed he eager crowd. ‘So would you just give one round of applause to Ant who’s back at home,’ he asked.
The crowd went wild for the star who is currently awaiting a court hearing. Ant McPartlin, also 42, was arrested on a drink-driving charge after being involved in a three-car smash-up, while being over the legal drinking limit.
‘Thank you so much, he’ll appreciate that a great, great deal,’ the presenter said.
But not everyone was pleased by Dec’s comments. Many thought asking people to cheer a man that has been charged with a drink-driving offence should be condemned rather than praised.
Some disgruntled fans of the show shared their thoughts on Twitter…
growing up in the north east I have always loved Ant and Dec but I really do not believe Ant deserves a round of applause when he got behind the wheel drunk ♀️
— erin (@ErinGuy_) April 8, 2018
Absolutely sick of all this sympathy for a drink driver because hes a "celeb" a round of applause for him !! Dec how abt a round of applause for the owners of the cars he hit or the kid who had to go hospital no all abt poor ant .makes my blood boil
— jim clarke (@jim_c7102) April 8, 2018
I wouldn’t give a “round of applause” for someone who was twice over the limit honestly it’s unbelievable, I think Dec should consider going it alone u know I’m just saying u know, I don’t think Ant is a very good role model for children anymore he should be ashamed of himself
— louisey (@louibell34) April 8, 2018
@antanddec Ant was twice over the legal limit should not have had any applause, he could have killed someone.
— KAREN WILLIAMS (@williams57111) April 8, 2018
Others saw it as a request to offer support for aiding Ant’s recovery and because he was ill – not as a means of directly supporting a man for being arrested for drink-driving.
People don’t seem to get that Dec asking the audience to give Ant a round of applause was for support because he’s in rehab not because of his drink driving
— All Ant and Dec (@allantanddec) April 8, 2018
Hi Chris. The applause was probably in recognition of the part he had played in the series, up until his offence. Don't throw stones….you might b next.
— Hazel Connolly (@Hazeled) April 8, 2018
The current series of SNT has now ended, having had one of its episodes cancelled the other week in the wake of Ant’s arrest and return to rehab. Since then, advertising partners Suzuki have parted ways with the show and duo, with the next series in the balance.
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