Gregg Wallace: ‘My daughter laughed when I said I wanted to go on Love Island’

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The last TV show you loved

I absolutely loved Mindhunter on Netflix. The director on MasterChef recommended it to me. It’s the story of the FBI beginning their criminal profiling in the 1970s to try to understand how serial killers work and it’s inspired by real interviews with serial killers from that time. It’s fascinating because it shows you how a couple of psychologists put together this profiling programme, which ended up being hugely successful.

We’d love to be able to binge it but me and my wife have a 13-month-old baby, so it can take four or five days to even get through one episode in bed as each of us keeps dozing off and then we have to work out how much each of us has seen before we can carry on.

Your TV guilty pleasure

I really like Come Dine With Me and Eating With My Ex. Both shows have my two favourite things: people and food. There’s some terrible food on Come Dine With Me and that creates some great moments. I don’t think I critique food any more seriously than anybody else does, though, and it’s hard to tell without being able to taste it. If I was going to do Come Dine With Me, my menu would be pretty offal-heavy; I’d want to start with devilled kidneys and then cook sweetbreads as the main before ending with my wife’s coffee panna cotta as a dessert.

The show that should never have been cancelled

I wish I, Claudius had never ended back in 1976. That was the best TV show the world has ever seen – apart from MasterChef of course. I was about 12 years old at the time it came out and it was a bit risque but it fed into my growing love of history, and the quality of the British actors in it was amazing. It was a work of absolute genius which made a big impression on a young Gregg Wallace.

Summer loving ... Gregg Wallace’s ideal guest role would be on Love Island.

Summer loving … Gregg Wallace’s ideal guest role would be on Love Island. Photograph: ITV/REX/Shutterstock

The show you wish you could guest star on

I want to be on Love Island because I want to show how toned I’ve gotten and I also want to increase my Instagram following and get a clothing deal with Uniqlo. I told my 23-year-old daughter that and she didn’t stop laughing for about 15 minutes.

… and the show that should be cancelled

Boris Johnson’s coronavirus briefings. Just stop them because they don’t mean anything – he’s just confusing the nation. He could just send the information out by email or text since whenever it’s on you can’t help but watch it and then you come away none the wiser.

The last show that made you cry

When Boris came on and told us we weren’t allowed out again! That was the last time I wept, it was horrible.

Your favourite TV moment

It has to be England winning the Rugby World Cup in 2003. I had invitations to watch that everywhere but I decided to watch it on my own with a pack of Diet Coke. Being such a massive rugby fan, that’s got to be my fondest TV moment. It was so huge, I didn’t want to watch it with anyone else, I didn’t want anyone talking rubbish, I just wanted to be stone cold sober and watching. When we won I was straight to the pub.

Why we should be watching Celebrity MasterChef

Well, because my wife wants to get a new kitchen done. But really, it was filmed before lockdown and I think it’s a jolly show and will be a relief from everything that’s going on. Someone tweeted about an episode of MasterChef which was on after one of Boris’s briefings and they said: “After worrying news, what you need is the comfort of Gregg Wallace smiling at a pudding.”

  • Celebrity Masterchef is on 1 July on BBC One at 9pm.

The Guardian

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