Backlash over graphic I’m A Celeb stunt
I'm A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here viewers have slammed the show over last night's "distressing" challenge.
In the 'Jungle Trivia' challenge, the celebrities who got an answer wrong had to put their heads into a box filled with different critters.
After getting an answer wrong, Toni Pearen was horrified to see her box was filled with jungle carpet python snakes.
In confronting scenes, the snakes lunged at Pearen and bit her on the face at least three times.
Pearen bravely continued on and completed the challenge but she burst into tears once her head was out of the box and said through tears, "You have to get me home to my kids."
Pearen was bleeding from the snake bites and had to receive medical attention.
In a statement to news.com.au, Pearen said: "I can confidently say I have always known I was determined … and the Hellavator Trial proved that. At no time was I prepared to say the words 'I'm A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here'. I knew I was safe. I was attended to by a medic immediately. I knew the snakes were not venomous. I was definitely in shock but I was not in pain and I was proud of my courage and determination."
Viewers were shocked by the scene after it aired and criticised the show for not ending the challenge after Pearen was bitten the first time.
"That was very distressing to watch. I can't believe the producers allowed her to be bitten so many times," Julie Jennings wrote on the I'm A Celeb Facebook page.
"That should had been stopped, what a traumatising thing for her to go through, I cried for her. Way too far 10," wrote Karyn M Janse.
Claire Cowie commented: "That had to be the worst moment on this show ever. Absolutely appalling and disgraceful all the way round."
Matthew Wolton wrote: "That was absolute BS. Having a lark and making someone uncomfortable is fair play but causing pain and drawing blood is not on. It was a total OH&S failure by the producers. Not stopping immediately was unforgivable. The lame hosts' attempts to wash over it were appalling."
Viewer Sandy Manser added: "Toni was amazing to cop that and keep going but really, they should have stopped the game and removed that snake. I was so upset and could hardly watch and Toni was so brave. I was crying along with her."
And Kristen Jones wrote on the show's Facebook page: "My nine-year-old watches this show. I'm disgusted you did not pull Toni out from the snakes! Desperate for an audience this season."
#ImACelebrityAU Toni Pearen is gob-smackingly brave. The worst nightmare of many people happened to her, and she didn’t give up. My new jungle queen.— B Total Landscaping (blue tick) (@iamqotl) January 5, 2021
Okay but watching Toni Pearen’s snake bite bruises bloom throughout the episode is low key DISTRESSING #ImACelebrityAU— Christopheria Baldwin (@chrisopotamia) January 5, 2021
Toni was bit 3/4 times by a snake, and no one helped her. I’m sorry, but that is VERY wrong. That’s one step too far. #ImACelebrityAU— Monique (@moniquemaywoods) January 5, 2021
The fact that this show just lets Toni get bitten on the face by a snake FIVE TIMES is a joke #ImACelebrityAU— Hannah (@Hannah_LMN) January 5, 2021
Pearen is one of the 11 celebrities who have been unveiled on the show so far this season. Last night The Real Housewives Of Melbourne star, Pettifleur Berenger, entered the camp.
I'm A Celeb continues tonight at 7.30pm on Channel 10
Originally published as Backlash over graphic I'm A Celeb stunt