Shows like Strictly Come Dancing and I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here are fun – but why are they almost always populated by showbiz and sports types? In the past two series of Strictly, political journalist John Sargeant and politician Anne Widdecombe were introduced as comedic interludes – and there have been no scientists at all. The sterling efforts of some not entirely unadjacent to this parish to get scientists into the mainstream of our cultural life notwithstanding, what we really need is a scientist on prime-time celeb TV.
Now, I could name a fistful of scientists with such experience of fieldwork that they’d eat I’m A Celebrity for breakfast, kangaroo testicles and all, so perhaps Strictly would be more of a challenge. One could imagine (say) Robert Winston cutting a rug in the waltz, or perhaps the paso. He Who Must Not Be Named has the elegance and aggression for the American Smooth.