Come Dine With Me: More cross than dressing

You expect Come Dine With Me contestants to be vaguely (sometimes historically) familiar when it’s the Celebrity Charidee Specials, but it was a bit of a shocker when artist and illustrator Simon Drew rocked up in a series of most extraordinary outfits in an ordinary CDWM last night. He was a sweetheart, but it was one of the mad shows where they seem to have trawled some odd places in South Devon to find the contestants. Frankie seemed mostly sane. I largely liked American Tara, but I was a little disturbed by the later revelation of her vast number of, and sometimes homemade, tattoos. Peter Pyne was the most unpleasant of the lot. A man clearly not secure with himself and scoring zero on the emotional intelligence chart, he kicked off with a series of sexist, racist and generally pathetic jokes which alienated him from the rest of the group. Then, on his night, he decided to reveal ‘Patricia’, his transvestite self. Now, it has been my pleasure to know, enjoy the company of, and indeed fancy cross-dressing men (Eddie Izzard in drag, what a magnificent sight).  

But unfortunately, Patricia was the alter-ego of a twat, and frankly, she didn’t enhance the overall package. It was the aggressiveness of the behaviour I didn’t like. The fake voice and the inappropriate sharing of private parts due to the overly-short, slightly pervy strangeness of the outfit. Simon Drew agreed, although the women seemed to prefer the company of Patricia to Peter. Once she’d calmed down a little and dropped the stupid voice, she did seem more pleasant than Peter, but really, that’s not much of a recommendation.

I’d advise a hefty dose of therapy to help make sides of his personality feel more comfortable in their own skin, plus some fashion advice that doesn’t come from the Ann Summers catalogue.

And some cooking lessons, since his food was shit. Prawn ‘crackers’ were in fact prawns mixed with six random condiments and wrapped in smoked salmon. To look like ‘crackers’. Which they didn’t, not even remotely. And how can you say you’re ‘marinating’ chicken in cream cheese? It’s madness I tell you. The ghost of Elizabeth David was tutting in pinch-mouthed horror at the very thought. I’ve blanked out the pudding.


The person who cooked food I’d like to eat, and lived in a house I’d very much like to live in (going a little Goldilocks here I know) was Simon Drew. Gorgeous views, lovely kitchen. A man with a lustrous beard, his outfits, bow ties and hats were very much along the ‘eccentric’ lines. As were the series of extraordinary spectacles he wore, which would outclass Dame Edna Everage and Elton John in his pomp (the ones Simon wore on his own night had no ear struts and looked like part of a Scold’s Bridle). His cooking involved a three bulb excess of garlic. I’m quite a garlic fiend and it even looked a bit stinky for me. More medicinal than flavoursome, perhaps.

In the end, Simon and the two women tied in first place and Peter/Patricia came fourth. And frankly, overall, it was one of the most disturbing episodes I’ve ever seen, and they’ve had some whackjobs on Come Dine With Me. I sometimes wonder if the lovely Dave Lamb feels like he’s narrating scenes from Bedlam. And I’ve still got no idea why Simon Drew would have wanted to have taken part.

Posted by Inkface

2 Comments

Filed under Cooking shows

2 responses to “Come Dine With Me: More cross than dressing

  1. arialbold

    Nothing to add to a perfect review – except to compliment you on finding the Simon Drew ‘Shepherd Spy’ pic. Carry on.

  2. inkface

    Kind of you to say, and nice to see a return to these pages of your insightful comments Mr Bold, if I may be so (etc). May we look forward to the pleasure of one of your fine posts again soon?

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