This is the latest in a series, following "Ross Kemp's Homicidally Vicious Gangs", "Donald McIntyre's Psycho Hoodlums", "Why Football Has Benefitted From Sky", "Really Fast Cop Chases Which End In Death", "Big Al's Drunk Pub Happy Hour Fights" , "Tie or No Tie" and "Phwoar: The Blue Peter Babes".
OK it's over, but trust me, it's coming back, and this easy to follow cut-out-and-keep guide to watching Dancing On Ice will earn you more brownie points than you can possibly imagine. Weeks of learning have gone into this.
(1) Say nothing. Not nothing, as in "I'm not talking to you because Lauren Laverne's on the other side doing the Culture Show and you want to watch this shit" nothing, but nothing in the sense that you don't know anything. You really, really don't (because in fact nobody does, it's all made up. Just like the tight costumes). Don't even try to understand what's going on, it will just give you a headache.
(2) When you do feel comfortable/qualified to open your mouth make it short. "mmmm" "wow" "fab", as opposed to "ha! look where his fucking hand is!" or "wow, she's got nice...(you can fill in just about anything here as very, very little is left to the imagination is these outfits) and do not, under any circumstances, question anyone's sexual preferences. Lost cause. None of your bizzo anyway.
(3) When someone makes a total arse of themselves (Bonny Langford falling over) do NOT loudly guffaw and slap thighs externally. Internally is OK, while whispering, "oooh" and listening to partner scream "OH! MY! GOD!" while staring in horror at television as if it has just thrown up on carpet. (tip: there's a slomo replay coming up. Sit still, very still, until it's over. Do not draw attention to yourself)
(4) Philip Schofield will look directly at you and talk a lot. It is permissable to stare blankly at screen while he's doing this, you don't have to pay attention here as it's all rubbish, and you can use these valuable seconds to think about important things. However if you are cooking dinner at the time, do NOT wander in from kitchen and say "what is that twat on about now?" as this will undo the previous few minutes work.
(5) The outfits are NOT sexy. In the sense that yes, they are tight fitting lycra leaving nothing to the imagination (let's just leave the boys out of this for the moment, shall we? I've seen rugby players naked in the bath, pop stars knobs, and actors expose themselves, but that's different),
they are not sexy in the normal sense. It is possible to stare at the screen seeing something different than, say, one's partner who might be concentrating on the finer points of skating at that moment rather than observing what is clearly a spray painted animal's hoof, or where the man's hand has just found itself in the name of art. Best to pocket these thoughts for later.(see 10)
(6) When the judge on the left has yet another hissy fit with the judge in the middle do try to remember that this entire charade is a game. For all you know they're not even gay. Although that's unlikely in the circs.
(7) Try to look as if you're interested when being addressed about the chances of somebody winning and don't just say "are they the ones in blue?" as that will give the impression that you haven't been paying rapt attention. Which you have.
(8) There is a break in the middle where the whole of Britain tries to get enough credit on their phones to vote for their favourite celebrity skater. Try not to fuck up here by (a) not noticing the programme has momentarily ended, (b) desperately flicking through Sky to find ANYTHING to watch or (c) sarcastically commenting on people stupid enough to vote while partner is texting on mobile.
(9) Have another glass of wine.
(10) Considerably later, after somebody - anybody - has won, cash in brownie points.