Celebrity SAS Who Dares Wins review: Ant Middleton offers no special treatment in most brutal series to date
The latest series is hard to watch but completely gripping, says Helen Daly
The toughest show on television is back and it's more brutal than ever – this time around, we've got 12 famous faces from the showbiz world attempting to pass the Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins selection process, with the likes of Katie Price, Helen Skelton, Joey Essex and Brendan Cole among others all giving their best to impress the instructors.
And while it's the same old format - Ant Middleton, Jason "Foxy" Fox and the rest of the team cart the celebrities out to the back end of nowhere - it feels even more unforgiving than usual.
You'd expect the celebs to have a watered-down experience compared to the usual SAS series, but the instructors are completely ruthless this time around. While they're always testing people to their limits, this time around, it's a more gruelling watch.
From the off, the famous recruits have to climb down a mountain before putting their faith in the instructors to get them down the rest of the cliff. It's Price who struggles the most - and gets the biggest telling off. Middleton finds himself yelling at her throughout the whole first episode, but the tough mum-of-five carries on and surprises everyone.
After their cliff-drop, the recruits face their first "beasting" and learn the real price of bad behaviour - an exercise so tough even Joe Wicks couldn't prepare us for it with his daily videos. At the end of it, all the celebrities think the same thing: don't mess up.
The real drama comes at the end of the episode, where the celebrities have to fight. After four recruits nominate themselves as the toughest, the remaining are tasked with being the aggressors. Middleton stands on the sidelines and tells them to "pummel" the tough guys. It's not easy to watch, in the slightest, and it brings about some hard conversations at the end of it all.
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Even as we're forced to cover our eyes and wince at some of the challenges, Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins remains entirely gripping. Challenging we think we know about the famous faces, it's refreshing to see an honest look at their real personalities – one that allows us to find out what makes them tick and what drives them.
And with the rest of the series looking set to be the most explosive and dramatic SAS yet, we'll be reporting for duty each and every week.
Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins airs tonight on Channel 4 at 9pm. If you’re looking for more to watch check out our TV Guide.