Sleb Safari - Richard Madeley: The Golden Age

TV titan Richard Madeley with wife Judy Finnigan and a giant Bafta statue

THE departure of Meghan Markle-obsessive Piers Morgan from Good Morning Britain, in much the same red puff of smoke as the Wicked Witch of the West, has left a gaping hole in the early morning schedules.

But cometh the hour, cometh the man (subject to contract requirements), who is fit to claim the ruby slippers of infotainment.

Richard Madeley, of Richard and Judy and, to a much lesser extent, Fortune: Million Pound Giveaway fame, is tipped to become a permanent Good Morning Britain presenter.

I don’t know about you but the future of the UK’s second-most popular current affairs/entertainment early morning programme has been keeping Sleb Safari awake at night. So much so that she frequently sleeps in and manages to miss every episode of Good Morning Britain.

But eager to herald the beginning of a golden age of Madeley, she looked up some of his past stints standing in for Morgan on the ITV show.

And what a treat.

Very much the original Alan Partridge, Madeley showed the kind of instinctive, unpredictable presenting style which made him a minor legend on This Morning with Richard and Judy.

From frank revelations about his daughter Chloe’s conception to non sequiturs about TV presenter Gaby Roslin and warnings about the dangers of UK beaches, Madeley had it all.

“You look at the beach and you think oh, pretty, pretty, lovely golden sand… nuh-uh, not in certain parts of the country – quicksand, quicksand,” he warned an understandably bewildered Kate Garraway.

Madeley informed viewers that quicksand “nearly got me once as a kid, more on that later”.

Unfortunately Sleb Safari never got to hear the rest of that anecdote and urgently needs some closure.

But the near-death chat didn’t stop there. In his column in The Express last week entitled ‘The Day A US Cop Aimed A Gun At Me And My Family I Was Traumatised – Richard Madeley’, the 64-year-old explained the day a US cop aimed a gun at him and his family and how he was traumatised. And with every sentence he really took you, the reader, to the heart of the action.

“I saw him thumb the holster's cover back and caress the pistol's handle. I got back in the car. Very quickly. But he wasn't finished.

“Hands on the wheel where I can see ‘em.”

Certainly a lot to think about there.

Sleb Safari is concerned that a light entertainment titan might have gone before his time and can only shudder to think what a Madeley-free world would look like.

Now that Morgan is finally gone, only a regular diet of Madeley five times a week can bring much needed healing to broken Britain. In this time of corona, and a possible DUP leadership under Edwin Poots, sometimes the hero we want is exactly the hero we need.

Gemma Collins versus 'The GC'

Gemma Collins, or is it the GC?

THE whole world is in a terrible state o’ chassis and there’s only one thing that can save us – some welcome news about Gemma Collins’s love life.

The reality star is reportedly back with her ex-fiance Rami Hawash (45) after they spilt up in 2014.

But there’s one metaphysical fly in the ointment and that fly is Collins’s alter ego, the GC.

Rami elucidated in a 2019 interview.

“Gemma Collins is a lovely, sweet person. The GC is not,” he said.

Just as Dr Jeykll was plagued by evil Mr Hyde, so Gemma is doomed to be forever haunted by the GC.

But who will reign victorious?

Chillingly, Rami said even he did not know.

“I would wake up in the morning and I would look in her eyes. In a second, I knew if it was sweet, funny Gemma who would make me breakfast and a nice cup of tea… or whether it was the GC.”

He added: “If I could have evicted the GC and lived with Gemma Collins, things would have been different.”

Sleb Safari doesn’t want to spray yellow paint around a pothole in the path of true love but the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde doesn’t end well for Jekyll.

We can only hope that the GC is eventually vanquished and Gemma Collins survives.

Danial Kaluuya's mother steals the show

Oscar winner Daniel Kaluuya

STILL reeling from the news that her own mother once crossed the Channel on a hovercraft, Sleb Safari now turns to another family drama.

Daniel Kaluuya’s reaction to his Oscar win elicited one of the best expressions of parental horror seen this century.

“My mum met my dad, they had sex. It’s amazing. I’m here! I’m so happy to be alive,” he said.

His mother Damalie Namusoke’s baffled expression, as his sister clutched her head in her hands, spoke to the embarrassed relative in all of us.

Sleb wishes she could hear the maternal earful Damalie gave her 32-year-old son after that clanger.

Hopefully it wasn’t as bad as the time Mammy Sleb told her off for not putting the big scissors back in the sewing box. Ructions for days.

Social Media Smut

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access