Former EastEnder and King Of The Jungle Joe Swash, 29, is now a team
captain in riotous game show Minute To Win It. We caught up with Joe while
we had a bash at one of the programme’s trickiest challenges, the Pencil
Where: The Hospital Club, London
So, Joe, what’s the aim of the game?
You’ve got one minute to bounce as many pencils as you can into the cups
opposite. It’s the same deal with every game – you’ve got one minute to win,
obviously! [Joe demonstrates the Pencil Vault.] See? Now you have a go.
[Fabulous tries and fails. Miserably.]
This is harder than it looks. So, are you a full-time TV presenter now, or
would you ever go back to acting?
When I left EastEnders, I didn’t know what to do. Then I ended up working with
Ant, Dec and Caroline [Flack] in the jungle. I’ve learnt from the best. I
love presenting, but I’m an actor at heart.
You’ve gone back to film a couple of special episodes of ’Enders recently.
Would you like to go back permanently?
I’d definitely go back.
Do you still watch the show?
Oh yeah, all the time. I’m a massive fan. My favourite ever storyline was when
Patrick (Rudolph Walker) had to wear a step monitor to keep fit and his wife
Yolande (Angela Wynter) noticed the amount of steps he’d been taking had
gone through the roof… because he was having an affair with Pat (Pam St.
Clement)! It was hilarious.
You don’t say… And what about you? Any romance these days?
No girlfriend! I think if you look for love then it always goes wrong. I’ve
got a little boy, Harry, who’s four, to think about now anyway. If it
happens, it happens.
In your partying days, you were notorious on the club circuit…
I was like a fat kid in a sweet shop. But I’ve toned it down. I have to take
my son to nursery now. I’ll go out once a month, maybe. Plus, I hate
everyone being younger than me when I go to clubs.
What’s your ideal woman like?
Someone who doesn’t take herself too seriously. I like a girl who doesn’t care
if I’ve got bogies up my nose.
Duly noted. Will you miss Caroline in the jungle this year when you present
the I’m a Celeb! spin-off show?
Dearly. [Looks very upset.] But The Xtra Factor is an amazing job and it makes
sense for her to do it. I was gutted when I found out, though – we’ve had
the best time in Oz. I love working with Flacky.
What’s the funniest thing that ever happened to you in the jungle?
There’s a special aerosol that cleans dust off the camera lens. I didn’t have
any underwear on – I don’t see the point of it. It was so hot, I had the
idea of spraying this aerosol up my pants to get some fresh air. Big
mistake. We had to get a doctor…
Ouch! Do you think you’ve helped to make red hair and freckles sexy?
My hair’s really darkened now actually.
Well, Fabulous loves a redhead!
Minute To Win It in association with Cadbury Spots v Stripes, Tuesdays,
Pencils successfully vaulted by Fabulous: 3
Pencils successfully vaulted by Joe: 8
Mini quiches scoffed: 7
Times Joe mentioned his son: 3 (aww!)
WORDS: ROSIE GIZAUSKAS PHOTOGRAPHY: LANCTON, GETTY, OPTIC PHOTOS