I’m surprisingly excited to find out who’s going into the African bush for the second series of I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here. It’s a hell of an experience, and a year after being part of the first series, I’m pretty sure I had a good time.
It was interesting, at the very least. Not interesting in the, ‘boy, that’s interesting’ way, but interesting for what the experience actually was. It was definitely weird, and difficult, and it is true that Barry Hall and I often discussed finding a venomous snake to take us out of the game.
In retrospect, we weren’t quite ourselves.
Slobbing about all day in a 20m X 30m TV Studio/campsite with several cameras, a screen overhead dispersing natural sunlight and any chance of seeing the famous African sky might change your perspective on things. Ridiculous food rationing probably didn’t help, and being chaperoned whenever out of camp by notepad wielding producers had its impact as well.
We definitely weren’t ourselves. Or maybe we were, just not the selves we thought we were.
It’s an experiment, really. The whole thing is an investigation into the human condition with people watching on. It starts with living with people you’d never ever consider living with, eating with them, sharing one toilet, showering in the open, trying to silently fart – or blaming Merv, and desperately hoping not to embarrass your teenage children. There are mind games, rampant paranoia and starvation.
I mean, it’s so compelling, why wouldn’t everyone do it?
Basically, here’s what happened to me, which is probably what the new IACGMOOH happens to the contestants, who at this point, will be without phones and laptops because as soon as they arrive in South Africa, they will be taken from them. It’s to protect them from blowing their cover, what celeb doesn’t want to Instagram a photo of themselves with a rhino or an elephant.
Last year, we were all sent to different lodges throughout the area and imprisoned. A good prison, though. And we were allowed out on game drives, provided none of the other celebs were game driving at the same time. I did laugh when I saw Barry Hall coming along a track from the opposite direction, something that put an end to my extra curricular activities.
If I wanted to go anywhere, it had to be cleared with a bunch of emails, as if I was really important, but in an imprisoned kind of way.