Every year I love watching I’m a Celebrity and can’t wait for it to start, but this year I was more excited than ever. Not only was it something fun and normal(ish) to look forward to in the middle of a global pandemic, but it is taking place in a castle and features my favourite I’m a Celeb contestant ever!
So who’s in the
jungle castle and what are they bringing to the show? Listed in order of how excited I was to see them, here are the I’m a Celebrity cast of 2020!
Who? Musical theatre actress
I knew very little about Ruthie Henshall before the show, although the name was familiar. She seems a nice enough person, although I do think if there is going to be any drama or tension in camp it might come from her! This is purely because, as a stage performer, Ruthie is probably very good at being dramatic and there’s definitely no shortage of things to get dramatic about in I’m a Celeb!
She’s got stuck in on the trials so far, and she was great in the secret mission. I can’t see her getting very far, especially as it’s such a competitive year. Although her revelations about the royals may help her stay a bit longer…
Who? Actress and singer, former Eastender
If someone had said “Jessica Plummer” to me, I wouldn’t have had a clue who she was. But I recognised her picture and the name of her Eastenders character (Chantelle Atkins) because I remember reading about her exit. She was part of a domestic abuse storyline that ended with her getting pushed on top of an upturned knife in a dishwasher- what an unforgettable way to go!
I had no opinion about what to expect from Jessica but so far she appears nice, if a bit quiet and nervy. She doesn’t seem to add too much to camp, but that could be the fault of the edit as she seems to get on with people in the camp. We’ve seen her get emotional about her daughter and seen her get very scared and jumpy in the live trial so, not to be cruel, but I hope we see a bit more of that in the coming days!
I knew Russell Watson was a musical person and would have guessed a singer, but beyond that I couldn’t have told you anything! So, all of my opinions about Russell will be formed solely from this show, which is worlds away from his usual environment of a concert hall! As a late arrival I would have predicted that he would be one of the first to go, but he is making a bit of an impact, whether he’s singing, having a joke, or having a more serious discussion!
He’s doing well in the trials and was even better than Ruthie in the secret mission, especially when he convinced people that he saw a ghost! I still think he could be out early as there’s strong competition, but I’m enjoying watching him so far.
Who? Actor aka Alfie Moon
So many people would have known Shane for playing Alfie Moon in Eastenders, and this is exactly how I knew him! Perhaps unfairly, this is why I placed him so low on my list. Shane was the only campmate I had real doubts about when the cast was announced, simply because I found Alfie incredibly annoying and thought Shane would be the same. I thought Shane would be too try-hard and try to be funny all the time, but what’s actually happened is that he is genuinely funny and has great interactions with the other campmates!
I liked him in the first episode and, while I’ve waited for Shane to get on my nerves, so far this has not happened! He comes out with some funny lines, and I loved the prank he pulled when he threw stones to freak out Jordan. Shane has been a bit of a surprise for me, although I think we could see a more grumpy and grouchy side to him as the days go on…
Hollie Arnold MBE
Who? Paralympic javelin champion
I knew of Hollie as I am a big athletics fan, but I didn’t know anything about her personality. I was excited to find out more about her, and was hoping to hear some athletics stories and see what she was like!
Hollie’s had a fairly quiet start, but she seems nice enough and coped well with the challenges she’s faced. She doesn’t seem as outgoing and “loud” as some of the others, and hasn’t made much of an impact in camp, although we certainly know she has an MBE! To be fair, if I had an honour I’d probably introduce myself like that too. It would be good to see more of her but, again, there are so many other interesting people in there!
Who? Actress aka Liz McDonald
I only know Beverley as Liz from Corrie, probably like most people! Based on Liz, I thought she might be fun and add some excitement/drama to camp, and possibly be funny doing the trials. Part of me was worried that she might annoy me a bit, but I chose to be more optimistic!
So far I like Beverley, she’s been friendly and told some great stories (although I question how accurate some of them are!) She’s also been entertaining in the trials and seems to struggle with bugs, so hopefully we’ll see her squirm a bit more!
Who? Ballroom dancer, former Strictly professional
I watch Strictly every year so I knew AJ pretty well. I really liked him and his dances on Strictly, but I was curious to see what he was like in this tough and basic environment away from the glitter! Sometimes on Strictly he seemed a bit awkward, although he was always really nice, so I didn’t know how he would come over on this show. I was also looking forward to seeing him in the trials as I thought he could be quite tough and cope fairly well!
AJ had a relatively quiet start, barely featuring in some episodes! He always came across as nice but was perhaps overshadowed by the bigger characters in there. We are seeing a bit more of him now and he does have a decent fanbase so he should make it fairly far into the competition
Who? Author, blogger and podcaster
I only knew Giovanna as the wife of Tom from McFly, and as he seems nice I thought she probably would be too! She always appears friendly, smiley, and with a good sense of humour, all while coping with three young kids! In the camp I thought she would bring a good, positive vibe, although perhaps not one of the biggest characters in there. From the start I thought she had a good chance of winning the show!
So far Giovanna hasn’t been on-screen so much as the others, but she always comes across positive and friendly as I thought she would! The trials she’s done she’s managed amazingly well, and just got stuck in without any melodramatics. She’s tough and looks like she won’t stand for any nonsense from anyone, although I’m not sure she’s the type to get involved in arguments (unless she felt it was really necessary!) I think she’s growing as the show goes on and could have a chance of making the final.
Who? TV and radio presenter
Vernon Kay is someone surely most people would know as he’s done so many things! I mainly know him from Family Fortunes and I thought he could be a great campmate as he seemed funny, friendly, interesting, and able to get on with most people. Of course I knew about the “scandal” a few years ago about him sexting and cheating (which doesn’t seem such a massive deal nowadays?) so there were some reservations about how he might come across and also about how people might like him
However, from the very first episode I love Vernon and I think a lot of viewers like him too! He’s witty and funny and does indeed get on with everyone. He also seems genuinely interested in people and talking to them, which is really nice to see, although he does talk about himself with several name drops to boot…He’s coping well with the trials and I can see him getting to the final, or at least close to it.
Sir Mo Farah
Who? Double Olympic champion 5,000m and 10,000m
Again, as an athletics fan I was curious about Mo. I’ve got to admit, I’m not his biggest fan in the athletics arena because of how he’s responded to the press and rumours about his association with Alberto Salazar. I found it hard to trust him and I didn’t really like his attitude. However, I thought it would be interesting to see him in a non-sporting environment and see if my opinions would change!
So far, Mo seems nice, easy-going, and very laidback. He’s fairly quiet, but obviously has some good stories to tell which are great to hear. I think he’s well-respected in the camp and is quite fun, especially when he did his trial! I will never forget the fish guts knocking Sir Mo to the floor. If I ignore my previous views on him I would probably really like him, but there is still that little doubt in my mind about how he acts in the athletics world. But he seems a decent guy and he should do well.
As an aside, I am dying to know when he signed up. Did he sign up knowing the Olympics were postponed or did he sign up thinking they would be over and he’d be retired? Because spending all that time not training is not going to help him defend his title against the world record holder Joshua Cheptegei…
Who? Journalist and presenter
Although I’ve not really watched her show on BBC, I knew who Victoria Derbyshire was from her investigative journalism. One of the stories I remember most from her show was about abuse in football, and she always seemed to cover topical and hard-hitting stories. I was surprised her TV show was cancelled, but it might have given her the chance to go on I’m a Celeb so I’m not complaining! I thought she could be an interesting character and that we’d get a chance to see a more fun side to her away from the journalism. I also hoped she might be quite straight-talking and able to dig out some stories about other campmates using her journalist skills. Part of me thought/hoped she might cause a bit of drama too…
So far Victoria perhaps hasn’t lived up to my expectations, although I have enjoyed watching her. She’s had some fun moments and seems to get on well with the other campmates, but she doesn’t bring loads to camp. However, she does stay calm and handle the trials well, and I love the fact that her and Jordan are in camp together after he was her “tea boy” years ago!
Who? Radio 1 DJ and all-round legend
Even when Jordan was just rumoured to be taking part on the show, I was so excited! I love listening to him on Radio 1 and try to catch up with any shows I might miss because he always puts a smile on my face. He’s funny and friendly, but also quite chaotic and you never know what he’s going to come out with or do next.
When he was actually confirmed for the show I already decided I wanted him to win and thought he could be one of the best campmates ever to be on I’m a Celeb. I also enjoyed the novelty of there being a campmate that I already felt like I knew really well before the show, as although I’ve recognised a lot of the cast in previous years, there’s been no-one that I actively really liked from the beginning.
I couldn’t wait for the show to begin and to see him in it- mainly because I was having withdrawal symptoms as he hadn’t been on the radio for so long because of self-isolation!
Part of me was worried that maybe I’d built him up too much, especially after I said how brilliant he would be to my mum and other people. But I really did not need to worry! When he had his opening interview and we first saw him, all seemed well. But when he realised he would need to go down a cliff and face his fear of heights, that’s when he cemented himself firmly in I’m a Celebrity history and in my heart! Throwing up on a cliff in Wales on primetime TV is classic Jordan North, and gave us a taste of what more we could expect from him!
He comes across exactly how he sounds on the radio, and he has shown himself to be friendly, funny, and kind-hearted- just an overall great guy!
Unsurprisingly he has faced a few trials, including the iconic “happy place happy place Turf Moor” snakes trial. He deserves so much credit for facing his major fears and managing to actually complete the trials, because it takes a lot of (fish) guts and inner strength to not just quit when things get tough. It was impossible not to feel bad for voting him to do those trials so it’s good that, after performing well, things have settled down a bit for him as we have voted other people to do trials.
Jordan was my winner from the moment he was announced, and he definitely deserves to be King Jordan of the Castle!
Photo credit to ITV.