Dancing on Ice viewers have complained this week’s elimination was “unfair” amid calls to make the “rushed” episodes longer and allow enough time for the skate-off.
Audiences wondered why the show couldn’t have started 15 minutes earlier after the former S Club 7 singer Hannah Spearritt was hurriedly eliminated from the ITV ice skating competition on Sunday (28 January).
Host Holly Willoughby announced there would be no skate-off during Sunday night’s episode, as Spearritt’s fate was decided on the basis of the judges’ scores and the public vote instead.
After the celebrities perform their weekly routine, the two contestants with the lowest marks go head-to-head in a skate-off, before the final elimination is decided.
However, Spearritt, who received 20 points for her routine to “Let It Go” from the Disney’s Frozen, was removed from the competition unceremoniously before the episode ended.
Viewers complained about the change in format on X, formerly Twitter, with several people urging ITV to make the episodes longer so the skate-off isn’t forfeited.
One viewer wrote: “I’ve never seen anything more rushed in all my life. After all that - the show still managed to end 3 mins early.
“This is why DOI needs to be on for two hours – that way they can fit in a skate-off.”
“Couldn’t the show have started 15 minutes earlier, was only repeat of limitless win on before the news earlier,” another comment read. “Seemed extra rushed ending to tonight’s show and strange no skate off would 15 minutes earlier to fit things in have hurt?”
Several people wondered about the decision to shelve the skate-off for one episode only, with viewers noting the show’s original format will be reinstated from next week.
“Why does it feel so rushed this week. Seconds of dancing [then] ad break Lacking any atmosphere!!!” one person wrote.
Another viewer said: “Think it’s a bit unfair how there was no skate off this week but its back next week? and why was the show so rushed?”
Commenting on the glaring skate-off omission, one person said it was a “shame”, writing: “They didn’t have time to do one - which is a shame because if the show was 2 hours they could have done one. I’m sure the show used to be that length.”
Speaking after her elimination, Spearritt said: “It would be sad to see anybody go, but I’ve really enjoyed it.
“Everybody’s been fantastic, and to be partnered with Andy has been an absolute joy. Thank you for the journey.” she said.
Elsewhere, Willoughby was forced to apologise for seemingly swearing on-air during Sunday night’s episode, after co-host Stephen Mulhern shouted loudly in her face.