Comedian Mel Buttle has become the first I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! 2021 contestant to throw in the towel after she quit the show during Wednesday night’s episode due to her terrifying phobia of snakes.
Her emotional breakdown was triggered earlier on when campmate Real Housewives Of Melbourne star Pettifleur Berenger reported seeing a snake near the jungle campsite, which is almost entirely open to the elements.
First celeb quits
A rattled Mel revealed the extent of her fear in a piece to camera, saying, “I have a proper phobia of snakes... It’s very strong.”
“I just don’t know how I could possibly go to sleep or go to the toilet or go and get my washing... here,” she added.
After making the tough decision to depart the competition, Mel faced the difficult task of informing her fellow celebs who were understandably distraught at the news.
“I have to tell you something,” she said to the group. “I have a huge phobia of snakes. It’s not just a fear, I have a massive phobia and it’s a really bad, bad phobia.
“I’m not even afraid they’re going to bite me, it’s not that, it’s the image of them, even a photo of them.”
As Mel spoke, her visibly upset campmates including Grant Denyer, former Funniest Home Videos host Toni Pearen and Pettifleur rallied around and tried to comfort her.
“I wanted to try and come here and see how well I would go and then today with Pettifleur, I have been losing my mind all day,” Mel went on.
“I feel like sh*t doing this but I have to go, unfortunately.”
And with that she spoke those infamous words, “I’m a celebrity, get me out of here,” and headed back to the ‘real’ world.
‘Despicable’ snake challenge
Mel’s shock exit comes just a day after co-star Toni was bitten on the face five times during a gruelling challenge that saw her head encased in a box of writhing serpents.
She successfully completed the task but was left bleeding and fighting back hysterical sobs while hosts Julia Morris and Chris Brown called for medics.
Fans were outraged at the traumatic scene, with many arguing it was a ‘despicable’ challenge and that Toni should have been removed as soon as the snake started biting.
During the ordeal, host Julia reminded Toni she could exit the challenge, but that would mean returning to camp without any stars.
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