Friday 30 September 2016

No probe into Ferne McCann spider trial on I'm A Celebrity, says Ofcom

Published 11/01/2016 | 11:26

Ferne McCann came third in last year's I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here!
Ferne McCann came third in last year's I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here!

I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here! will not be investigated over a controversial episode that saw contestant Ferne McCann eat a live spider in a Bushtucker Trial, Ofcom said.

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A total of 1,448 complaints were received by the TV watchdog and ITV about the Bushtucker Bonanza task aired on December 6, which saw The Only Way Is Essex star McCann swirl the water spider around a glass before eating it.

A spokesman for Ofcom said: "We received a number of complaints about a contestant on this programme eating a live spider as part of a challenge, but won't be taking the matter forward for investigation.

"In our view, this task was in keeping with the well-established format of this reality series and was unlikely to have exceeded audience expectations. We also took into account that ITV had taken steps to limit any offence resulting from the inclusion of this task."

The consumption of live invertebrates such as insects and grubs is an established part of the jungle-based reality programme.

Ofcom said it was satisfied with ITV's explanation of the steps taken to mitigate offence when showing the task, including footage selected and avoiding any vertebrate creatures.

An ITV spokesman said at the time: "I'm A Celebrity complies with all regional and national laws concerning the use of insects in the eating trials, which have become a well-established part of the show over the past 15 years."

McCann came third in the competition, won by Geordie Shore star Vicky Pattison.

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