Monday 23 October 2017

Celebrity OT a ratings success as viewers tune in to see celebrities get a rude awakening

Comedian Katherine Lynch makes a splash in the first episode of Celebrity Operation Transformation by wearing red high-heels. Photo: RTE
Comedian Katherine Lynch makes a splash in the first episode of Celebrity Operation Transformation by wearing red high-heels. Photo: RTE
Brenda Donohue, Gerald Kean, Elaine Crowley and Karl Spain get ready for Celebrity Operation Transformation, which starts on RTÉ1 tomorrow night. Photo: Justin Farrelly
Comedian Katherine Lynch makes a splash in the first episode of Celebrity Operation Transformation by wearing red high-heels. Photo: RTE
Comedian Katherine Lynch makes a splash in the first episode of Celebrity Operation Transformation by wearing red high-heels. Photo: RTE
All set for 'Celebrity Operation Transformation': Brenda Donohue. Photo: Damien Eagers

Sean O'Grady

Celebrity Operation ­Transformation is well able to hold its weight in the ratings battle, if last night's episode is anything to go by.

An average of 425,000 people tuned in to the first episode of the RTE series starring Gerald Kean, Elaine Crowley, Katherine Lynch, Karl Spain and Brenda Donohue.

While some of the participants were in a for a rude awakening when it came to their weight, the first celebrity version of the show looks in good health so far. It pulled in similar ratings to the hugely popular regular series.

The ninth campaign of the weight-loss programme, which aired in February, enjoyed an average audience of 489,900 with a 29.5pc share of the audiences.

It was up from the 475,300 who tuned into Operation Transformation last year.

While it's too early to tell whether or not the show's first celebrity edition will prove to be an even bigger ratings success, bosses will undoubtedly be happy with its promising debut.

TV3 presenter Elaine kicked off her weight-loss battle with a bang, losing a massive 1st 2lbs after just one week. She went from 15st 11lbs to 14st 9lbs.

Meanwhile, celebrity lawyer Gerald Kean, whose starting weight was more than 19 stone, also lost an impressive 1st 3lbs during the first weigh-in.

The legal eagle recently admitted he can't wait to see his progress a few months from now.

He has his fingers crossed he will not slip into old habits once the show ends and he is out on his own.

"I got into it and I stuck with it and it got easier each day. With me there's a few things. Number one is, you get into a comfort zone, that's a danger," he told the Herald.

"I'll be more interested to see where I am in February or March.

"I'm doing this because I need to change and nothing will be worse than if I do succeed reaching a target weight and then going back to where I started."

Radio presenter Brenda Donohue lost 8lbs after her first week, admitting she found it difficult to adjust to the new lifestyle the show required.

"The first week you've got three kids. You've all the back-to-school stuff and suddenly you have this Operation Transformation going on," she said.

"It's like a third job. The second week something kind of clicked and it wasn't like a job, it was just part of what you were doing.

"What often happens me is you go in, you do a day's work, you're hit by an avalanche of homework and then it's 9 o'clock and you haven't eaten so I'll go down and get a chicken fried rice."

Operation Transformation airs Wednesdays at 9:35pm.

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