Loose Women's Kaye Adams and Nadia Sawalha became the latest players to be blocked from Channel 4's The Celebrity Circle on Friday night. Read their Channel 4 exit interview below...
How was it?
Kaye: We had a great time. I think we can safely say we had much more fun than we thought we would have. It was hilarious. That's not to say we're not sometimes on level 10 of anxiety about whether it's going to finish our careers or not, but I think we've kind of thrown the baby out with the bathwater in that one!
How was it being The GC?
K: Oh, it was liberating. It was absolutely liberating. It was an interesting experience being a catfish. We did often talk about how it would be very different, being ourselves, because you've got The GC force field around you. So it was much more of a game.
N: We could be naughty and cheeky because we were a catfish. But it was actually quite complicated, because you want to be true to The GC but you've also got to be a good catfish. So you've got to be ruthless. And she's quite a complicated person to play, because she can be this big diva, but she can be very vulnerable and sweet and all these things. We knew that somebody would be in there that knew her. We just knew that. It would be crazy not to have thought that. So it was a very precarious line to walk. Being from South London is not the same as being from Essex, you know? So you can get just a word slightly wrong, and you’ll alert everyone to the fact you’re not Gemma. You can't be safe with the language because she talks in a very particular way, so we thought about that and laughed about that before we went in. But when we were actually in there, it was like, "Oh my gosh".
K: Yeah. It's interesting. The motivation in choosing The GC was that she is larger than life and she is this very out there character. On reflection, as a catfish, it's probably easier to play a more low-key character because the other people are likely not to know so much about them.
N: But very boring for us, because when you've got Rachel Riley being played by the guys, that's funny. But us playing Rachel would have been boring because you've got to play it safe. But if you've got two young lads playing Rachel Riley, then that's amazing.
K: I think you probably have a better chance of winning, if that is your goal, with a quieter character. In terms of your actual experience of playing the game, we're really, really happy that we went for such a larger than life character like The GC.
What did you think when you saw that Kim Woodburn was in The Circle?
K: Well, that was such a perfect choice because she is a really good character to be in there. She's got a very distinctive style, very distinctive language. She regularly appears in those kind of shows, so she was very credible as a choice.
N: We did a watch-along when she was in Big Brother and we used to do impressions of her. So we were really excited. We thought, ‘Oh, we can have lots of fun here’. When Duncan alluded to the fact that she might be a drag queen, as soon as Duncan said that to us, we were like, ‘Of course!’
K: I wasn't as convinced. I thought Kim was Kim. But the penny dropped with Nadia when Duncan said that, and we realised she might not be for real.
Were you surprised by anyone else?
N: Oh, actually the biggest shock was to see Rachel Riley was actually Pete Wicks and Sam Thompson from Made In Chelsea. I was gobsmacked when I saw it was them.
K: Yeah, absolutely, 100%. She was the one person that we were confident about.
N: Yeah, we were like she's just really straight, she didn't get into trouble, because she doesn't do this or that. It was a genius move by the lads, and I didn’t know anything about Rachel.
K: Then there was Will.i.am, straight away you think, ‘Really?’
N: I was very suspicious of Denise when she said, "I'm here to make friends," it just didn't sound like Denise. We know Denise, because she's been a Loose Woman, we love her. But when she said that I thought it was a bit of a nerdy, don’t get me wrong, I love all things nerdy but it just wasn’t a Denise thing to say because she’s not a nerdy person. So I was obsessing about that. I mean, you basically have to think that everybody's a catfish because there's no evidence. There's never any evidence. Big Narstie we knew straight away was a catfish.
N: Oh, well various things. One thing that he said, ‘this is just like Bridget Jones' Diary’, and we were like, ‘he’s Gloria Hunniford!’
K: Yeah, actually, it's when he said that he lip-synced along to Mysterious Girl to his girlfriend, and we thought there’s no way the real Big Narstie would be doing that.
You thought he was Gloria Hunniford?!
N: Oh yes, well, either Gloria Hunniford or Richard and Judy, it was because of the mention of Bridget Jones, there was just a sweetness, an old-fashioness. I worked with him last year, so I spent time with him, so it didn’t ring true!
Who do you think has been playing a really good game and who do you think will win?
N: I think everybody has played a really good game. I mean, even Denise, because I didn't even know Denise was Denise. So I think everyone's played a good game. I think we played a good game, I mean, we laughed our tits off for four days, but I don’t know if that’s any good! We're a bit embarrassed because our flat was an absolute tip! Now we’ve seen other people in their flats, their flats are immaculate, like a TV studio. Whereas we basically moved into a flat and behaved like two 16-year-old girls!
K: I’m not embarrassed by that because I know everyone'll blame Nadia!
How was it living together?
N: Well, the last time we lived together properly was when we were in Manchester years ago when we did Loose Women there. So to be back in Manchester in a flat, I think it was kind of like evil genius, in a way, because we did go back to behaving like we did before we had kids. All we did was bicker! We bickered like two old farts! On the first day, the producers were like, "how's this going to work out?" They were worried, I think, that one of us might walk off! But then they were like, "Five minutes later, you were laughing your heads off like it hadn't happened," and we're like, "Oh, yeah, we do that all the time, we’re just like sisters!” It was a bit more than just disagreeing, there was storming off!
Was there door slamming?
N: Oh yeah! The thing is I've done reality shows before. Kaye hasn't. And Kaye said, ‘I will never say again that people don't forget that the camera's there, because you do forget that the camera's there’.
K: I think actually I've learned that I will never, ever do a reality show. You’re being watched all the time and you do forget and become totally like you would at home. We kind of had confidence that because it's for Stand Up for Cancer, the producers weren't looking to deliberately stir controversy and animosity. We did that quite well ourselves! All they needed to do was to put us into a flat together. But it did really make me think, ‘Gosh, to be in a production where the producers are doing their best to try and raise the temperature’, it’s tough. I always regarded myself as quite a level-headed person, and that will probably be dispelled when this goes out. You lose perspective, and that's a real problem. Once you move to your reality, rather than real reality, you're a sitting duck.
N: But the interesting thing for us, I think, and what was so lovely about all this and just stepping into another character was to just be Covid free and not have any responsibilities. But, interestingly, because we're both quite workaholic people, we just became workaholics about Gemma Collins!
K: But also, we had a digital detox which we loved. Both of us are kind of slaves to our phones in normal life and we both did not miss the phones one bit.
N: When they gave it back to me, I was really scared of taking it. I felt really weird about it. It was an absolute joy to do, though. We went in and didn't know really what the hell we were going to be doing, but we had a brilliant time. We had a nice little holiday away from the real world. It was horrible to come out!
Do you think you'll be on social media less now that you've had this experience?
N: Well, I think personally I'll be more organised with my social media. It's not just social media, anyways, that's on the phone. We all do it. You go on the phone because you need to buy something and then you go off and look at the news, and then you go to another news story and then you come back around, and then you go on Twitter and then you go on Instagram. So I'm just going to be more organised with my social media, so that I do it at certain times. I'm never going to take my phone upstairs to bed again. I had convinced myself the only way I can get to sleep is if I’ve got a meditation app on. And actually, I read every night and went to sleep the old-fashioned way, and it was amazing!
Is that the same for you, Kaye?
K: I do less social media than Nadia anyway, but I totally get Nadia's point. It's not really just about social media. It's about the pointless scrolling. It's just when you scroll into the black hole of the soul, and you end up looking at things and consuming things that you never set out to do, and you've lost half an hour or an hour, and what have you done? You haven't really achieved anything. I mean, I guess it's that taking back control of the phone, because it's so easy to allow the phone to control you. You're just bobbing about on the ocean of the internet. You don't even really know why. I think that really did show us how much time we both spend doing that.
How would you sum up the experience?
N: Oh, just huge, huge, fun. What a great way to spend a few days helping Stand Up To Cancer, and, at the same time, we are challenging ourselves. I mean, now we're sitting here going, "Oh my God, how are we going to come across?”
K: I think we revealed ourselves to ourselves. That's really scary.
N: Well, I'll tell you what. We've both got sore throats and stomach aches from laughing so much. So that's good!
The Celebrity Circle for Stand Up To Cancer continues tonight at 9pm on Channel 4 and All 4.