Should this season be the end?
I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! is back on UK screens. For 2020, the sweaty Australian outback has been replaced with a chilly Welsh castle.
The second episode aired on ITV, with radio presenter Jordan North and actor Shane Ritchie taking on a classic Bushtucker trial. The pair were locked in coffin-like boxes with snakes, shouting codes at each other to get the coveted stars so they can eat something other than rice.The Radio 1 star screeched his way through the challenge, clearly utterly terrified the entire time. Despite facing one of his greatest fears, he dutifully completed the task, winning the underwhelming prize of some eel for his fellow contestants.
It's been a couple of years since I last saw I'm a Celebrity, and watching it tonight felt different. North repeatedly screaming "HAPPY PLACE! HAPPY PLACE!" as Ant and Dec chuckled along was an undeniable highlight; but the trial itself? It's disappointing to say but I just felt bored. Maybe it's years of watching these challenges in the past, but the format felt tired to me.
It's become all too easy over recent years to criticise shows like this, for people to be snooty about what other people watch. Personally I love a lot of celebrity shows like this - until they become boring. Maybe it's the new location, maybe it's being on series 11, maybe we're just used to shock-tactic TV, but it felt like there was even less jeopardy than previous years.
We're all craving more entertainment at the moment, but for me a terrified presenter locked in a box with some poor snakes while Alfie Moon shouts at him just didn't hit the mark. Viewing figures so far suggest not many people agree with me, with the first episode seeing a huge increase on last year. But I still wonder how much life I'm a Celebrity has left in it, as charming as the contestants this year may be.