Hotel GB Review: Rubbish Service, Great Entertainment

HOTEL GB: Monday 1st October and all this week, C4, 9pm

I’ve often started a sentence with the words “I’d like to gather up Gordon Ramsay, Paddy McGuinness and Mary Portas and put them all in a…â€? but I’ve never ended it with “hotelâ€?. Still, with the public tiring of jungle, house and kitchen, this is a fine addition to the ‘Gather Up Celebrities and Put Them Somewhere’ genre.

For the rest of the cast, Channel 4 have taken a list of (very) available celebrities and a list of jobs that you do in a hotel and matched them up the best they can. Inevitably some of them don’t really fit. Property guru Phil Spence, looking lost and disorientated, is inexplicably the maître d’hôtel, and Embarrassing Bodies host and embarrassing face owner Dr Christian, for vaguely discernible reasons, is on hand in the gym. He seems charming enough, even though this does break my cardinal rule of never trusting a doctor who goes by his Christian name, especially if his Christian name is Christian.

The glorious Kim Woodburn, star of How Clean Is Your House, steals the show though, mustering more authority with a single swipe of her bog brush than Gordon Ramsay could with a whole truckload of fucks (incidentally not a bad description of the guests in the top suite). Of course, it’s all probably staged, but nobody cares! Are any of them real guests? Nobody cares!

And that’s the best thing about this show: almost no effort is made to maintain the façade that they’re running a real hotel or picking the best candidates, which is great, because if I want to see a hotel reasonably well-run I’ll just go sit in a Travelodge.

The interviews too are farcical with applicants given the old job interview standards: ‘why do you want to work here?’, ‘Where do you want to be in five years?’ and ‘Would you give Gordon Ramsay a back, sack and crack?’ In fact, a huge amount of the episode seems to revolve around whether Ramsay should have his sack waxed, which whilst mildly amusing seems a bit unnecessary given that it is probably at least three times as wrinkly as his face, and therefore probably has a similar surface area to the moon.

But when they’re not talking about Ramsay’s testicles, this show is loads of fun. In fact, I love it: it’s completely ridiculous and completely full of people who normally expect an hour of T.V. to themselves. When that’s the case, everyone raises their game.