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I'm A Celeb Hit With 59 Ofcom Complaints Over Arlene Phillips' 'Joke'

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I'm A Celeb Hit With 59 Ofcom Complaints Over Arlene Phillips' 'Joke'

I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! has received Ofcom complaints over Arlene Phillips' joke about OCD during Sunday night's episode.

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There were 59 complaints logged with the broadcasting watchdog, after the former Strictly Come Dancing judge and choreographer, 78, made a remark about Obsessive Compulsive Disorder during the 2021 series' first episode.

Arlene was on her way into the Welsh castle in the first episode on Sunday when she mentioned how difficult it would be to live in grim conditions.

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"I cannot live with dirt," she said in the pre-recorded segment, showing the theatre star being driven to the castle. "I am completely OCD about everything in my life being organised, clean, neat and tidy."

Arlene has not publicly confirmed whether she suffers from OCD, and many viewers took issue with her comment and with ITV for keeping it in the episode.

Viewers expressed their disappointment on Twitter (Credit: ITV)
Viewers expressed their disappointment on Twitter (Credit: ITV)

ITV did not comment when Tyla contacted the channel about the OCD comment on Monday.

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Tyla has once again contacted ITV for comment following the announcement from Ofcom.

After the episode aired, viewers took to Twitter to express their disappointment.

"Very disappointing to hear a contestant use ‘OCD’ as an adjective because they like things clean," one viewer wrote on Twitter. "Even more disappointed in ITV for not editing it out."

Another viewer said: "Someone really needs to teach Arlene Phillips what OCD is. It’s a serious condition which shouldn’t be branded as a joke.”

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While one fan reacted with: “Arlene Phillips just casually using OCD as an adjective on #ImACeleb. Great start to the season…”

And someone else wrote: "Oh here we are then Arlene Phillips “has OCD” because she likes to tidy THAT’S NOT OCD FFS #ImACeleb."

(Credit: Twitter)
(Credit: Twitter)

The charity OCD-UK also tweeted their response on Sunday, writing: "Not for the first time @ITV have left an unhelpful and inappropriate reference to OCD in an @antanddec #ImACeleb episode. Pre-Recorded so could easily have been edited out so not to add to misconceptions/ stigma."

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The NHS website describes OCD as a common mental health condition where a person has obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. It can be highly distressing and impact someone’s day-to-day life. 

However treatment can help those with OCD manage their symptoms including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) or a type of antidepressant medicine called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

There are OCD information services to help people suffering, including OCD Action and OCD-UK.

I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! continues tonight at 9pm tonight on ITV

Featured Image Credit: ITV

Topics: TV And Film, Im A Celebrity, ITV

Gregory Robinson
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