Channel 4’s The Jump is set to be almost entirely live this year.
This is good news. Series one of the winter sports-themed reality show wobbled slightly on a batch of pre-recorded content, with viewers left watching celebrities wait nervously for their times. Series two had a bit of hopping between locations. Now, the action moves almost entirely to ‘Jump mountain’ in Kühtai in the Austrian Alps.
This includes a brand new ski jump which has been purpose built for this year’s series. It’s taken three months to finish and is three times the size of a double decker bus. We tried to get an exact height, they wouldn’t tell us. We’re digging out a tape measure.
Contestants only have to face this knee-wobbling eliminator when they come bottom two in the show’s various challenges; the skier who jumps furthest stays in. Thankfully for the more nervous, as with last year’s trio of jumps, they can choose three different points to jump from. They don’t have to throw themselves from the top.
A ski cross, snow cross and brand new moguls course has also been fashioned specifically for the show. Only the skeleton needs to be filmed elsewhere in an existing run.
The huge Air Jump also makes a welcome return, with the competitors flying through the air to land on a giant air bag.
This year’s batch of famous faces includes Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington, Adventures of Superman star Dean Cain and The Only Way is Essex’s James ‘Arg’ Argent.
I’m told former EastEnders star Sid Owen is particularly fearless as is Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle. While Cain joked it seemed much less dangerous to fly when he had his Superman special effects team, I’ve also been told he’s one to watch.
The Jump returns this Sunday at 7:30pm on Channel 4