I'm A Celebrity's Rebecca Adlington & Lucy Pargeter only hated because they're women

A divide is happening in the I’m A Celebrity jungle, and it’s nothing to do with whether your Hawaiian shirt is pink or purple, or you do the washing up.

The tide has turned against Lucy Pargeter in recent days. Copyright [Rex]

The real divide was summed up when Lucy Pargeter stood with Ant and Dec at her trial, panicking that she had done something wrong, as the public couldn’t have voted for her because they LIKED her. S

he knew that while Joey’s repeated selection showed his popularity, that’s not how it works with women, and sadly of course, she was right.

[BLOG: The cracks are beginning to show in the I'm A Celebrity jungle]

Lucy’s trial fell exactly at the moment when public feeling had turned against her, and there is the real divide; straight down the jungle’s gender lines.

Lucy immediately realised the public didn't like her when she was put forward for a trial. Copyright

On Twitter and around office kettles, the anti-Lucy feeling had been building and seemed mainly to focus on a theory that Lucy was jealous of Amy’s looks.

If I had been in the jungle I would have found the nearest tree to bang my head against because I’ve seen Matthew bitch about Joey, but nowhere have I see it suggested that he is furiously envious of Joey’s six-pack and sparkly teeth.

So why, when it comes to women, is this our default? Why do we presume that Lucy - who works in TV so I’d imagine comes across many model-pretty women under 25 - is unable to conceal her rage every time she sees one of them?

If Lucy and Rebecca had clashed, would we think that Lucy was envious of Rebecca’s OBE? Probably not, because our views on female achievement are so skewed that we don’t think four Olympic medals are as covetable as eyes that still look pretty without mascara.

Here’s my theory: I think Lucy sniped at Amy because 21-year-olds are different to 36-year-olds and in an enclosed space, when you don’t have family and friends and home comforts, those differences can seem very irritating.

It’s not right, but since Alfonso thinks he might “erupt like a nuclear explosion” and Matthew Wright is calling for revolution, I think we can say that the campmates are not reacting to things as they would in their normal lives.

People are really angry with Rebecca Adlington - but why? Copyright

The response towards Lucy is even more unsettling because of the vitriol towards Rebecca Adlington being exempt from certain trials on medical grounds.

Ah, of course -  four times Olympic medal-winner Rebecca really strikes me as the kind of person who’d bail; whose mum wrote them sicknotes to get out of cross-country running. It’s not as though she’s about as far from a wimp as we have in this world, and whatever her reason for not partaking, it’s clearly valid.

We now know that it’s due to something that stems from her swimming days, and her fiance has clarified that it’s the production team’s rules that rule her out, rather than Becky wanting to laze in a hammock all day looking at Vincent’s buttocks. But still, people are angry with her, because it’s what we do: we see women in the public eye and we pick fault with them.

Why do we automatically presume they're all jealous of Amy? Copyright [Rex]

I’m not saying that the women on I’m A Celebrity, like women in life, don’t mess up, get jealous, bail out of things, and generally get things wrong. I’m not saying that Lucy should have sniped at Amy, and I’m not saying that she doesn’t sometimes wish her bum looked like Amy’s in shorts, but we all have those thoughts and it doesn’t make us go round snarling at anyone prettier than us.

To suggest that that’s true, and for our default setting to be to rush to criticise women and presume that they have the very worst of motives? That’s to do Lucy and all women, a huge, huge disservice.