Let’s get this straight. The real winners of I’m A Celebrity are Ant and Dec. Without them, the programme would be nothing more than a bunch of people squabbling about how to cook rice and chewing a kangaroo’s bellend. (And props to them for mentioning NUFC‘s spectacular win over Chelsea yesterday.) The other thing to get straight is that it is always, ALWAYS, a truly nice person who is voted the winner.
Nice is considered a bit of a weak adjective. But as far as I’m A Celebrity is concerned, it’s appropriate, because there has never, ever, been a winner with edge. The closest we came was when Janice “Oh Maaaaan” Dickinson finished second to overall winner Christopher Biggins. See? Nice wins.
This year the final three were Fogs, Jake and Mel. All were fierce. All were fit, capable, nerveless and going to win any trial thrown at them, no question, removing the “will they/won’t they” element of each trial. Knowing this, Dec tried to spark up a conversation with Jake as he stood with his head in a tank filled with a variety of revolting creepy crawlies. “How’s it going, Jake?” “Mmmmn, hhmnn, mhhnm, mmnhhhhmnn,” responded Jake, his mouth firmly shut as a burrowing cockroach tried to set up home in his top lip.
Foggy got the dreaded eating-a-creature’s-doodahs trial. Ostrich anus. Camel penis. “It’s just fatty gristle,” Foggy informed us, pulling a few stray strands of shredded genitalia from between his teeth. Let us pretend we didn’t see any of it, shall we?
Mel’s task involved finding stars in two water tanks. Mel is scared of water and looked properly rattled. The water poured in, with a load of crabs, eels and, er, other aqua-type creatures bobbing about in the tank with her. Mel’s hands were shaking but her success was never in any doubt; the woman is an Amazon and ITV should resurrect the original Gladiators with her presenting it, pronto. Knowing how scared of water she is, Jake and Foggy were thrilled for her. Again – thoroughly nice people.
So Mel came third, and rather refreshingly admitted she’d like to have won. As a Northerner (a Geordie, actually, and Geordies are the best people in the whole world so there, bite me) it was cheering to see all three finalists to be people from the North. Gosh, I’m coming over all Game of Thrones here #winteriscoming but whevs. We’ve got GRIT, people. Nobody ask me to chow down on a camel’s bits to prove it though. Just out of interest, anyone remember the prize wuss that was John Fashanu, who was scared stiff of crossing the rope bridges? Pfft.
In the final moments before the winner was announced, Jake was adorable. “I didn’t have an ego going into the competition, because I’m nobody.” I hope he stays as grounded as he is now, because I think he may be offered quite a lot of telly work after this. “He’s a really good guy, with a great heart,” said Kendra. There was a lot of praise for Foggy too. “He’s just a real man,” said Michael Buerk.
Foggy won. He was beside himself with joy. Did winning four World Superbike Championships mean nothing to him? Nope. This was the pinnacle of his achievements. Well done, Fogs. And well done Jake. And Mel. It’s all been bloody wonderful. See? Nice people win. Think about that, people.