Joel Anderson/ITV

Is this the end of ‘I’m a Celeb’?

ITV’s I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! is a reality TV show like no other. Blessing our screens for the past 19 years, it has enabled us to watch our favourite celebrities in a setting which is far beyond their comfort zones. 

In case you are unfamiliar, let me summarise the premise. The show involves a group of celebrities spending a few weeks in the Australian jungle (or for the past two years, a Welsh castle), where they must complete trials to win food for the camp. They have no access to the ‘outside world’ and therefore must rely on each other for company. Sounds simple enough, right? Wrong. Emotions tend to run high, especially when the celebs have not eaten a proper meal for a few days or when homesickness gets real.

While the premise of the show is the same year on year, the celebs that take part can be extremely varied. The appeal of the show depends largely on the celebs taking part that particular year. Typically, viewers, myself included, tend to complain that most of the celebs are not even well-known.

The main appeal of the show has been that we get to see a different side to celebs: one that is often not portrayed in the media

This year, the show has already experienced some exceptional circumstances. People leaving the show early or arguing with fellow campmates is nothing new; however, this year the weather has also created problems. For the first time in the show’s history, some of the live shows have had to be cancelled due to Storm Arwen.

I am not a huge fan of reality TV but I do find I’m a Celebrity quite entertaining, especially some of the gross trials that the celebs have to face. However, I think that the main appeal of the show has been that we get to see a different side to celebs: one that is often not portrayed in the media. That being said, it is important to remember that what we see is not the full picture. The celebs are in camp 24 hours a day, and so what we see on TV is only a snippet of what is going on.

I feel as though increasingly celebrities are going on there to purposefully cause drama in hopes of becoming more popular and well-known on their return to the real world

Although I still think I’m a Celebrity is a good show, my love for it is slowly diminishing. One reason why is that I feel as though increasingly celebrities are going on there to purposefully cause drama in hopes of becoming more popular and well-known on their return to the real world. This can make watching the show a bit of a painstaking task but as mentioned, this largely depends on the celebrities taking part that given year. 

Another reason why I am becoming less keen on the show is its excessive use of animals. Throughout the series, we see a wide variety of insects, snakes, rats, spiders, and other animals. While most people are not particularly fond of such creatures (hence their use in the show), they should still not be mistreated and used for entertainment purposes. In fact, the RSPCA have stepped in and tried to get ITV to stop using live animals in the show. Live animals aside, the eating trials also tend to contain even more animal produce. When the show was filmed in Australia, it would not be uncommon for an eating trial to contain kangaroo or crocodile. Such use of animals is not acceptable, but has become normalised on primetime TV. 

As much as I have loved the show for many years, I think it is no longer as appealing as it once was. For the first time ever, I am falling behind on the episodes and I am not entirely sure if I will finish watching this season at all. I think the show has had a good 19 years on air but unless it undergoes some drastic changes, the end is near. The only logical solution to the animal rights issue would be to stop using animals and their products altogether. However, if this was the case, I think that the show would massively lose out on popularity as the audience is so used to seeing animals in the trials that they probably would not be able to imagine the show without them. The time has come for the show to come to an end. 

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