Series launches with Richard Madeley and Danny Miller on losing team

In ITV’s Sunday night schedule, Adele was essentially the warm-up act for Richard Madeley. The mega-selling singer’s exclusive concert at the London Palladium, An Audience With Adele, preceded the return of I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here! for its 21st series of torturing famous types with animal genitalia and assorted creepy-crawlies.

Cult hero Madeley was the main attraction. They even held back his arrival until an hour into this launch show, the big teases. Perhaps it was so Adele had time to get back from the Palladium and tune in from her hotel suite.

The “broadcasting legend” and Telegraph agony uncle is dream fodder for such formats: garrulous, guileless and game for anything. I’m A Celebrity has been trying to sign him up for years, as has BBC rival Strictly Come Dancing. Khakis and cork hats clearly held more appeal than sequins and Spanx. Or maybe ITV’s fee was just higher.

Many of us have put international travel plans on hold these past two years, settling for staycations instead. The ITV reality stalwart is no exception. For the second series running, the pesky pandemic meant the production had swapped the steamy Australian jungle for a draughty castle in Conwy.

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