I’m A Celeb. So far so average but Extra Camp breaks new ground in awfulness

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I’m A Celeb. So far so average but Extra Camp breaks new ground in awfulness

November 15, 2016 - 19:00
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Nothing much to say about this year’s jungle heroes. So far so average. An annoyingly nice bunch of people who are all getting on famously. Which is the last thing we want.

Carol Voderman is impressed by Joel Dommett's way with numbers

Nothing much to say about this year’s jungle heroes. So far so average. An annoyingly nice bunch of people who are all getting on famously. Which is the last thing we want.

But it’s always good to see a new face on television. Especially Carol Vorderman’s. What the hell’s happened to her? Epic amounts of surgery? Industrial quantities of Botox? Or has she discovered the secret of eternal youth? You decide.

Either way, I’m A Celeb’s elder stateswoman is clearly keen to win. Treating us to panoramic views of her substantial boobs and self-consciously talking to a toad in a theatrically charming way. “We can have a chat,” she said as the cameras closed in to capture the magic trans-species moment. Artfully putting herself centre stage. Why not? We wish her luck.

“Who do you want to be camp president?” they asked. Oh God, not another presidential election! But an inventive method of drumming up even bigger profits from the constant money-spinning phone-ins that reap a fortune for ITV.  

And while we’re in the mood for questions, who is Joel Dommett? He’s an alleged comedian who’s so proud of being able to reel off the first 106 numbers of pi (3.14159265 etc.) he’s had them tattooed onto his arm. As you do. “I don’t know anyone else who’s got a tattoo of pi,” revealed Carol, unsurprisingly. Who does? Another thing of great interest about Joel is he has an impressive six pack. Er… that’s it.

“What accent would you like me to read it in?” he enquired as he perused a document outlining the first collective challenge. Gee, Joel, I dunno. How about your own? Then get back to your lavatory cleaning duties.

Oldest swinger in the rainforest Larry Lamb was storming it as the viewers’ favourite. Voted to power as the man in charge after establishing his chivalrous credentials. A septuagenarian knight in shining armour swimming to the rescue of maiden in distress Scarlett Moffatt. What a guy. But when they filmed him picking his nose and eating the contents his saintly status – er – nosedived. You have to be careful Down Under, they’re always watching. It’s Big Brother with trees.

That walking the skyscraper plank thing wasn’t up to much. And, starring the most creepy-crawlies ever exploited in a Bushtucker Trial (more than 120,000), the Tomb Of Torment was a case of quantity over quality. The laughs were delivered by ex Strictly dancer Ola Jordan, whose scrunched face was so contorted by fear she looked like Mrs Overall in Acorn Antiques.

But it’s early days and until they stop being so nauseatingly showbiz friendly and start hating each other’s guts the series won’t get going. Might take a little longer than last year. There’s only one “Lady” Colin Campbell. Thank Christ. But don’t worry, there will be strife. The sooner the better. Bring it on.

In so far as it’s worth predicting a winner with three turbulent weeks still to go, likeable Gogglebox bimbo Scarlett has to be the best bet. But the slightest indiscretion can change the volatile audience’s opinion. One wrong move and in the blink of an eye the wannabes are toast.

“I’m known as quite the joker,” boomed Jordan Banjo (the brother of Duelling) as the nation’s heart sank. “I’m always messing about.” One of those blokes who thinks he’s the life and soul of every party but almost certainly isn’t. “I literally have no idea what’s going on,” he added, accurately, as he tried his hand at cooking food for the first time in his eventful life.

Former footballer Wayne Bridge is terrified of everything Australia has to offer. But probably not as terrified as he is of John Terry popping round to see his wife while he’s away. Wayne seems a decent chap. But the tawdry Terry connection must be the only reason he was chosen. It can’t have been his bubbly personality.

But let’s not forget the others… Emmerdale hunk Adam Thomas, model turned radio host Lisa Snowdon and Olympic golden girl Sam Quek. Or rather, let’s. Chris Evans’ mate Danny Baker is waiting in the wings with chirpy TV property expert Martin Roberts. Send in the dynamic duo ASAP, this luvvies’ convention urgently needs livening up.

But while the main show has yet to fulfil its potential, ITV2’s new unimproved spin-off Extra Camp is every bit as dreadful as we’d feared. Presented with breath-taking amateurism by three screeching jungle champions and the reliably unfunny Chris Ramsey, this wall to wall juvenile drivel is one of the worst programmes ever to disgrace the screen.

Okay, it’s a light-hearted affair… not Panorama. But memo to the patronising producers: We’re not three year-old airheads. When Joe Swash isn’t the most clueless dork in the studio, you know you’re in deep trouble. Step forward gormless gurner Vicky Pattison who is as irritating as she is incompetent.

After the brilliant Ant & Dec dropped by for a Geordie-fest chat, Vicky pointed to the random phone kiosk adorning the set and shrieked: “Are yous jealous of uz sparkling phern box?” Oozing sarcasm, Ant replied: “Yes, that’s the first thing I thought. I’m very jealous of your phone box.”

Meanwhile, professional Cockney sparrow Swash snuggled up to his real-life squeeze Stacey Solomon and growled: “Ah fort we mart be the Jai Zee and Beyoncai of the jungle.” Whether they’re from Newcastle or London these indecipherable idiots require subtitles.

Our thanks to best of the feeble four Stacey for providing us with the following vital information about Ms Moffatt: “Scarlett used to drink her own urine for fun. What a lovely lady. We’ve all been there.” Haven’t we just. Make mine a pint.

Enduring this ear-splitting hour of noisy nonsense is like being screamed at by howling morons. So ludicrously brainless it would insult the intelligence of a little kid who hasn’t learned to talk. A bit like the Extra Camp presenting team and their specialist subject, English a second language.

As various obsessives skyped the show from back in far-away Britain, bungling Vicky asked some bozo called Mike: “Do you love the new Extra Factor?” So close! Oh, how we laughed. If we didn’t, we’d cry.