Zoe Ball jokes that Stephen Mulhern is 'harsh' to Ant and Dec
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Stephen Mulhern, 44, was left taken aback during his appearance on Zoe Ball’s BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show this morning after she quipped about his “harsh” behaviour. The presenter was being interviewed by host Zoe, 50, about the new series of his ITV game show In for a Penny when she addressed his cheeky on-screen antics while working with Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly, both 45.
In for a Penny sees Stephen travelling around the UK while setting members of the public unusual challenges and rewarding them by giving them the chance to win anything, from the price of their petrol, to £1,000 in the final game.
Speaking about the show, Zoe told Stephen: “Everybody’s up for a bit of fun and also you have a brilliant talent, you rip people, you take the mickey, but in a gorgeous way that’s very funny and quite gentle.”
Zoe followed her kind words by joking that despite Stephen’s kind nature, he “can be quite harsh” on his Saturday Night Takeaway co-stars Ant and Dec.
She remarked: “I mean, you can be quite harsh, especially on Ant and Dec.
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“But they deserve it!”
Seeming shocked by Zoe’s comments, Stephen exclaimed: “What?!”
“No, I’m only joking!” the radio presenter giggled in response.
Following the awkward moment, Zoe continued to quiz Stephen on the series.
She added: “But also, how many people sort of walk past and go, ‘No, no, no, I don’t want to do it’?
“Can you kind of persuade most people to get involved?”
Stephen replied: “Yeah, because the main thing about the show, like you said, I think it’s why it does so well, is it’s about people just enjoying themselves.
“Nobody will ever feel embarrassed about what they do.
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“Mind you, it still blows my mind what people will do for £50!” he admitted.
Stephen previously spoke out about his secret rivalry with Ant and Dec.
When ITV’s Lorraine’s host Christine Lampard brought up how seriously Stephen takes magic last year, the star warned Ant and Dec about stepping on his toes.
It came after the presenters tricked Stephen with some newly discovered magic tricks.
He said: “Let me tell you Christine, let me get this off my chest.
“Ant and Dec thought they could touch the magic turf, in reality magic is with Mulhern.
“They tried it, they fooled me, they got me on camera and tried to show me a couple of their silly little tricks, and then I had to prove a point.”
He added: “I know they’ve marked their area in the big shows, but Ant and Dec, stay away from the magic, the magic is Mulhern.”
Zoe Ball’s Breakfast Show airs weekdays at 6.30am on BBC Radio 2.
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