I’m A Celeb: Andrew Neil swipes at Matt Hancock
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Andrew Neil has taken a hilarious swipe at “little Mattie Hancock”, claiming that he is “off down under” to join the former Health Secretary to “nibble on a few roasted kangaroo testicles”. In a skit opening his flagship programme the Andrew Neil Show, the broadcaster posed in an Australian cork hat with a small, inflatable kangaroo, jokingly claiming to have “had enough of this pesky day job” and wanting Channel 4 to pay him to take part in ITV’s Bushtucker trials as part of I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here. The skit was performed as the first episode of the much-anticipated show reached screens across the UK, with Mr Hancock due to arrive later in the season.
Mr Neil said: “Well, g’day cobber. Yep, I have had enough of this pesky day job. You know, the one I get paid to do?
“I’m off down under to join our former health secretary, little Mattie Hancock, on I’m A Celeb.
“I am pretty sure British taxpayers are still paying his wages while he is nibbling on a few roasted kangaroo testicles.
“Mmm, kangaroo testicles. I wonder if I can get Channel 4 to pay me to do the same!”
Within minutes of I’m A Celebrity beginning on Sunday night, hosts Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly poked fun at the former health secretary.
Confirming there will be two extra arrivals to the camp, Mr Donnelly joked that they had managed to keep their identities a “complete secret”.
He said: “You are going to be surprised, guys. We are going to be rolling out the welcome mat for them soon”, stressing the word “mat”.
The launch episode saw a new batch of 10 celebrities enter the Australian jungle for the first time since 2019, as the past two years were shot at Gwrych Castle in North Wales due to Covid-19 travel restrictions.
Among them were pop star Boy George and Love Island star Olivia Attwood, who were revealed as the public’s vote to become Jungle VIPs, but this was not as luxurious as it first appeared as they later discovered this meant “Very Isolated People”.
Mike Tindall MBE, a member of the Royal Family by marriage, also appeared in the jungle for the show’s 22nd season.
Matt Hancock is expected to enter the jungle in the coming few days, though the celebrities already there do not know that he will be joining.
Reaction to Mr Hancock’s announcement that he would be leaving his constituency to partake in the show has been ostensibly negative.
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On Monday morning, business secretary Grant Shapps said it was “tempting” to watch fellow MP Matt Hancock eat disgusting critters on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! but he will instead be focusing on his Cabinet job.
Asked if he was looking forward to seeing Mr Hancock having to eat crocodile anus, Mr Shapps said: “Tempting as that is, I think I’ll probably be focusing on my job as business secretary, and I’ll be off at Cop27 later this week as well, so I fear I might miss him depending on how long he survives.”
He said he will not be voting for Mr Hancock on the reality show, adding: “I just think he should be here looking after his constituents, rather than in the jungle somewhere.
“So, no, I won’t be. I won’t be voting for him. I can’t promise I’ll be voting for anyone at all. So that might just be (by) omission rather than anything else.”
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