I'm an author... get me out

Enough of C-list stars. Bill Greenwell goes back into the jungle with I'm a Celebrity... and the canon of English literature

Jungle. 7am. In the presenters' eyrie.

Dec: Morning! It's day eight of I'm a Literary Celebrity - Get Me out of Here!

Ant: And some of our 10 writers have got cramp after yesterday's group task.

Dec: Tom Eliot's feet have started to pen-and-ink.

Ant: And Emily B is still wuthering away. She's used two narrators, and she's got a cracking title.

Dec: What's that then?

Ant: Cathy Come Home.

Dec: That's a play, isn't it?

Ant: At this time of the morning, it's probably a breakfast serial. Let's have a look in camp, and see who's still afraid of...

Ant & Dec: Virginia Woolf!

Shot of camp.

Dylan Thomas: After the tum-grumbling, bowel-shivered night, hush as all the spring-heeled writers feather their quills with the scrawlings of dawn, and the dibbling of His Nibs in the jungle's fat-spit jangle. The girls are drooling over the cookpot cockcrow.

Emily Brontë: Ey oop! Who's let t'fire out?

Sylvia Plath: Why is it so cold? Are they embers? Of course, they are embers. I put my candied hand to the heat. I have simply let it out, like a sigh, like a dried tide.

Bert 'DH' Lawrence: I came down, down here to eat, in the long hot shadow, the long hot baking shadow of the eucalyptus, and the pot, the round and bulbous pot, is in gloom, a deep dark gloom that is not a gloom, only gloomier.

Emily: Ey oop! They's no tea in yon pot. Sithee, Sylvia...

Sylvia: The moon is like a spoon, spun. I am no maid. So how should I boil up, boil up, boil up?

Tom 'TS' Eliot: Only, there is water under that red rock.

Emily: Ey flaming oop!

Back to jungle eyrie.

Dec: Oh dear, oh dear. I don't think they're pen-pals today, eh?

Ant: They've lost the plot.

Dec: Anyways. Yesterday, if you remember, Bill Shakespeare only won four stars in the Cyclo Drama Trial. He had to hang upside down in a croc-infested swamp, and every time he found a new genre, he had to ring his bell.

Ant: But Avon wasn't calling for Bill, was it?

Dec: It wasn't. He got the history, the comedy, the pastoral-comical, the scene individable, but he totally missed out on the others.

Ant: Tragical.

Dec: It was.

Ant: No, that was one of the ones he missed.

Dec: Is that right? We didn't do that in GCSE. Anyways, as a result, the whole camp went hungry.

Ant: They ate a dog, a horse, a rat, but they had no fool at all. Gooseberry fool, probably.

Dec: So, anyways. The Great British Public have been voting on who has to face today's Bush Tucker trial. If you want Anita to Loos, ha ha, just add 01. If you want Bert Lawrence down the pit, add 02. If you want Bill to swan about, add 03. For Cole Porter to be tops, add 04.

Ant: If you want Dylan to go gentle into that fly-infested bog, 05. To see Emily baht 'at, 06. And if Mrs. Gaskell's your rascal, 07.

Dec: For Sylvia to be the bees' knees, 08. To see Tom under the brown fog, 09. And for Virginia to have a DOOM of her own, 10.

Ant and Dec start travelling across the bridge. In the camp:

Tom: A rat crept slowly over the vegetation. Wallala leia lala.

Anita Loos: So Bill only got four stars. So I said he was some bard. So we were very hungry.

Bill Shakespeare: My curses on this murrain'd patch of land! 'Tis but a stew, where cankers grow apace, and perfidy doth blight our corn the while. Where is yon (bleep-bleep) jakes? I'd one fell swoop.

Mrs Gaskell: I've been a busy Lizzie.

Dylan: Listen. Under the brushbrown branches, the camp is bristling. The witchety grub, concertina-blowsy, is mulch-tang on the tongue.

Anita: So I said it is a moth. And so he said not for three years. So it is a delicacy. So I was sick. So I got no stars.

Bill: Thou but repeat'st thy words, as 'twere a stylus, stuck in a fatal groove, and in such wise, that echo hath itself grown doubly dim.

Cole Porter: It's de-bilitating, it's de-batable, it's de-lirious. It's box-fixated, intoxicated, approximatedly great - the way salmon are sapped of stamina, and weighed by the gramme on a plate. It's de-meaning, it's de-ceptive, it's de-niable.

Tom: La la.

Virginia Woolf: But of course, it will come to a conclusion, a close. And here, one supposes, in the waters, here in the outback, are the stars which will coalesce. Not to drown; to go under; not that. All this trial and test, exhausting, tiring, fatiguing; and oneself at the vortex, the centre, watchable. Not as one might watch oneself (for here one sees heaven knows what tribulations); but viewed, all the same. And being viewed, is that not to be subjected to the fuss, the delight, the exquisite disquisition of the infinite numbers of voices which surround one?

Mrs G: Here's Ant and Dec. They're not from the South.

Emily: Ey oop!

Ant: Good morning! Today's bush tucker trial is called Streams Of Unconsciousness, and the British Public...

Mrs G: You're from the North, aren't you?

Ant: Mrs G, it's not you. Cole. It's not you. Tom...

Tom: In my beginning is my ending...

Ant: It's not you. Bert... it might be you.

Mrs G: I said, you're from the North, aren't you?

Dec: Mind, she's turning vicious.

Ant: OK. Bert, the British public have picked you for today's trial.

Bert: In my deep, deep heart, I knew. And then I did not know. And yet, in the deepest dark of the deepness, in the hot bowels, the white hot bowels of deepness, where Demeter and Dis illuminate their blue-dark darkness...

Anita: And so I said, it's Bert. So it is not me.

Sylvia: I am ears, all ears, pink as the peony nymph. See, I flower.

Dec: In a few moments, the whole camp will be crawling with snakes. For every one that you whack with this stick, you win not only a star, but chapters in books by F R Leavis and Terry Eagleton.

Bert seizes the stick and clobbers Ant and Dec to death.

Bert: And yet how foul, how foul and filthy and degraded I feel. And yet how elated. And I have something to expurgate: reality TV.

Bill: Pah! Fie upon 'em!

Tom: Shantih.

Emily: Ey oop! By the 'eck, I've finished t'book. Three volumes!

Cole: "...unquiet slumbers for the sleepers in that quiet earth." You're the top! - you're a Brontë Sister. You're the top, you're by Buena Vista...

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