Claudia Winkleman says men on The Traitors were ‘threatened’ by smart women

The Traitors host Claudia Winkleman has come up with an interesting theory for why male contestants were consecutively chosen to become “Traitors” on the hit BBC show.

Winkleman, 52, has fronted two seasons of the tense TV challenge, in which contestants must identify who among them are “Faithfuls” and who are the “Traitors”, since it launched at the end of 2022.

In the second series of the show male contestants Paul Gorton and Harry Clark, and female contestant Ash Bibi, were initially picked to be traitors out of the line-up, before Bibi was banished and a trio of men succeeded her.

“Another man, good, it’s like the olden days,” Winkleman, 52, told the contestants during the January 2024 episode.

Winkelman has now said she believes the male contestants were chosen because they were “threatened” by intelligent women.

“Maybe I shouldn't have done but I just had to say it,” she told The Guardian.

“I was like 'Come on, boys, what you need here is a really smart woman', but they were threatened by them.”

The Traitors star Harry Clark ended up winning the contest (BBC Breakfast)
The Traitors star Harry Clark ended up winning the contest (BBC Breakfast)

British Army engineer Clark took home the whole £95,150 prize pot, after he deceived disability model Mollie Pearce into thinking he was a fellow Faithful when he was really a Traitor.

Winkleman previously said she had originally turned down the offer to host, but changed her mind after watching the Dutch version of the hit reality show.

Winkleman has hosted ‘The Traitors’ since 2022 (PA Media)
Winkleman has hosted ‘The Traitors’ since 2022 (PA Media)

She also presents Strictly Come Dancing alongside Tess Daly, and will return to screens on the second series of The Piano on Channel 4, alongside renowned pianist Lang Lang and pop star Mika, as judges.

In a recent interview with The Independent, Pearce opened up about the brutal trolling she was receiving after starring on the show.

“I actually deleted Twitter about halfway through the show because it’s a horrible place,” she said.

“I will not be going on there. I just thought, ‘Well, no one has anything nice to say, so I’ll just leave.’ It is crazy. It’s fine for people to have an opinion but just use your words kindly, you know?”

She continued: “It’s a shame because no one can tell me they didn’t enjoy that final. It was some of the best TV in a long, long time. Yet people still have something to say.”

Mollie Pearce rejected claims that she had a ‘crush’ on Harry (Loose Women, ITV)
Mollie Pearce rejected claims that she had a ‘crush’ on Harry (Loose Women, ITV)

Pearce also hit out at fan speculation that she had a crush on her fellow contestant, Harry: “People have this fantasy that I fancy Harry, but that is so not true,” she said.

“Me and Harry had a really good, strong friendship. I really trusted him all the way through. It was nothing else. And me and Harry still have a great friendship. It has been rubbish for our partners, and I think the public do forget that there are real people behind what they’re saying.

“So it’s not been very nice for them either, but it’s quite nice now that in an interview I can properly put my point across, and I just think it’s crazy, that in this day and age, a boy and a girl can’t be friends without there being romance speculation.”

You can read the full interview here.