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I’m a Celebrity South Africa: Gillian McKeith questions if Shaun Ryder has ‘had a brain transplant’

Gillian McKeith has said that she questioned whether Shaun Ryder had “had a brain transplant” after the pair “hit it off” on I’m a Celebrity… South Africa.

The pair feuded the first time they appeared on the show in 2010 and have been reunited in South Africa for the special all-stars series.

Friday (28 April) night’s episode saw the campmates compete in the first survival trial of the series, where the losing team would be eliminated from the show. Ryder and McKeith worked together and came last, leaving them kicked out of camp.

Speaking after her exit, McKeith – who was the first survive contestant to arrive in camp this series – admitted that she was shocked by how well she’d got on with Ryder this time around.

The TV nutritionist infamously clashed with the Happy Mondays singer the first time they were in the jungle for series 10, shouting at each other on multiple occasions.

“I heard a rumour he might be going in and I was horrified,” McKeith admitted. “I thought, I don’t know how this is going to go because we were kind of nemesis in 2010 as you probably know.

“Then when I saw him as I arrived I thought, oh no it’s him! I said, ‘Hello Shaun’ and I felt something shifted even in that moment. He was very welcoming to me, actually.”

She continued: “We had to do a Chest Challenge together and got on brilliantly. He sang my praises. I was like, ‘Who is this guy?’. He was like, ‘She’s brains, she’s so intelligent, she’s this, she’s that’ – every compliment you can imagine flying out of his mouth.

McKeith was the first surprise campmate of the all-stars series (ITV)
McKeith was the first surprise campmate of the all-stars series (ITV)

“It was crazy. Who knows what was going on. I thought, has he had a brain transplant, what’s happening? But yes, we hit it off. We’ve come full circle. And it shows you, you can go full circle with a relationship and it doesn’t need to be stuck in the past. It’s a life lesson for everybody.”

The first time they appeared on I’m a Celebrity together, Ryder called McKeith a “f***ing irritating woman”.

Following his exit from his original series, Ryder told Ant and Dec: “If Gillian was my wife, she would be in pieces in a plastic bag, deep in a hole in the back garden.”

I’m a Celebrity… South Africa airs weeknights at 9pm on ITV.