Ant and Dec are back on our screens – bringing with them a sense of normality that is desperately needed during lockdown, which is their yearly series of Saturday Night Takeaway. The duo and the rest of the show’s cast have undoubtedly brought joy and fun to the viewers despite the seemingly hopeless situation we are all struggling with.
This episode features stars including: Olly Alexander - from the band Years and Years and breakout star of It’s a Sin - as the guest announcer, Stephen Mulhern - from Catchphrase and In for a Penny - being in charge of the annual Ant vs Dec segment of the show and Gary Barlow – a member of Take That - as the star of the End of the Show Show. Others involved include Fleur East, Jamie Redknapp and Harry Redknapp.
Even though Ant and Dec are back doing what they love the most, which is to entertain people, many viewers have reported on social media about the background noise caused by the live audience they had on the show. These viewers complained about the noise as they could not hear what was happening as a result. Despite this, Ant and Dec continued with the show as normal which is what they do best.
A touching part of the show was when Ant and Dec surprised Mrs Crawley, a teacher who worked in her profession for 32 years and was going to retire this year. They launched Operation: Thank You Miss using her former pupils to support them in giving her the best possible last year of her teaching career. The year-long ‘operation’ shocked Mrs Crawley as she did not expect the goodwill throughout the year to be orchestrated by Ant and Dec.
These gestures included: getting her shopping paid for her by one of her former pupils (unknowingly), getting a limo ride from one of her former pupils (also unknowingly) and getting her classroom redecorated without her knowledge by her former pupils. Viewers on social media expressed how these gestures touched their hearts and were grateful that teachers like Mrs Crawley were receiving the praise they were due.
The Ant vs Dec segment of the show is feel-good and memorable in previous years. It did not disappoint this year! Stephen Mulhern amusingly came out covered in gold paint from head to toe introducing a new game which is a crossover between football and golf. It was a distraction from the reality of our world nowadays which is what everyone needs – a bit of fun and silliness.
The End of the Show Show is another light-hearted delight to have to finish off the episode. It features Gary Barlow and his edible orchestra. The entertainment came from the fact that vegetables were used as instruments – even Ant and Dec had some to entertain the nation! When Gary Barlow was singing his song, Incredible, some of the original lyrics were even swapped out with vegetable-based lyrics to promote healthy eating, in a bid to educate children while having some fun watching the show.
Overall, the episode was uplifting, magical and brought us out of the reality we are living in now – even if it only occurred for 1 hour and 30 minutes! If you haven’t seen it already, it is highly recommended that you do.