Surely, nobody REALLY thought that Ant and Dec’s little joke on I’m A Celebrity about what it’s like to be prime minister in Australia was REALLY a dig about the nature of our overseas chums.
For those who missed it, in Sunday night’s show Dec said: “As you know this job is about ruling over a group of uncouth layabouts who rarely wash and can barely light a fire”. To which Ant responded: “Basically it’s like being the Australian prime minister.
Initially, the comment sparked something of a rage among Australians, not least Queensland senator James McGrath.
But it seems that most fans of the show – including a lot of Australians – didn’t really see why it was such a big deal. Even when Piers Morgan tweeted about it…
Nah we're cool. Have a beer and calm down. The sun is shining and life is good down under.— Danielle (@Deezeleedee) November 21, 2016
Oh come off it it was only a joke by ant and Dec I don't think it went too far at all #ImACeleb— BB REALITY (@Reality93Now) November 21, 2016
This whole thing about Ant and Dec on I'm a Celeb is a perfect example of how easily everybody is triggered nowadays— Ajay (@Ajay_Bhogal) November 21, 2016
After all, Ant and Dec making a joke on TV? Um…shocking?
Ant and Dec... what can I say ..😂😂😂😂— The Mrs (@Marshall5Sharon) November 21, 2016
Besides, surely the best way to fight an offensive joke, is with another joke…
I'm a offended Australian, I will knock those two down several sizes, oh no need.— Andrew Smith (@AndrewS66804035) November 21, 2016
After all, it’s not like us Brits haven’t had our fair share of mickey taken in our time…
@imacelebrity Ant and Dec you are naughty boys.. You said comments and the Aussie threw there toys.. We've heard worse about the Brits 😬😜— Evelyn (@evelynbod98) November 21, 2016
Responding to the whole hoorah, a source from the show, where Ant and Dec work and play pretty closely with the Australian filming crew on a daily basis every year, said: “The comment was made in jest to the Australian crew in a light-hearted tone that viewers would recognise as being a long established part of the past 15 years of IAC and was delivered in that spirit.”
And it looks like even the senator chilled out a bit, when he appeared on Good Morning Britain hours later, publicly inviting the pair for a drink with the country’s political bigwigs.
James told the show: “It is great for Australia, we love the fact that I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! is filmed in Queensland in Australia – we want you to keep coming back.
“In fact, I’d like to offer to Ant & Dec, and to the winner, that when it’s all over, to come down to Parliament House in Canberra and I’ll shout them lunch or dinner and a few rum and cokes.”
Now THAT is a party we’d love an invite to!