Michael Barrymore raised concerns during his appearance on This Morning on Thursday, as he spoke in a slurred manner and consistently talked over the hosts on-screen.
The 71-year-old TV star commenced the segment by appearing not to know who hosts Josie Gibson and Craig Doyle, were saying: “I thought it was Alison and the other one, who are you two?”, seemingly referring to Dermot O’Leary.
Viewers inundated Twitter with comments on the interview, which they described as a “car crash,” where he not only ridiculed Craig’s Irish accent but also led Josie to scold him for interrupting her introduction.
Michael, who recently claimed to be enjoying the pinnacle of his career, has been extensively promoting his return as a TikTok sensation and accomplished theatre director. He garnered praise for his new West End show “Laurel and Chaplin.”
Despite his apparent joy in his career pursuits, his latest television appearance has triggered discussions, reminiscent of his dazzling showbiz career that came to a halt 22 years ago following the tragic death of Stuart Lubbock in 2001, subsequent to a party at his Essex residence.
During his appearance on the show, Michael sported an exceedingly casual, creased salmon-coloured top that turned translucent under the studio lights as he posed for post-show photos. He engaged in a conversation with Josie and Craig, who are among the rotating presenters that have stepped in since Phillip Schofield’s scandalous departure.
At the outset of the chat, making his surprising remarks about the hosts, Michael quipped: “I thought it was Alison and the other one, who are you two? Who are they? I know the names of all the cameramen but I don’t know you two.”
He then proceeded to imitate Craig’s accent, prompting a playful retort from Josie, “It’s my turn now!” This led to a surprised expression from Michael.
The Twitterverse was soon inundated with comments about the interview, with viewers expressing sentiments such as: “‘Michael Barrymore, what a nightmare and an awful section…'” and “‘This interview with Michael Barrymore is horrendous…'” His speech was criticised for being difficult to understand, marked by slurred words.
Some viewers, however, supported the veteran star, with one fan asserting: “‘Michael Barrymore, quite possibly the best entertainer and show host we’ve ever had…'” and “‘Michael Barrymore is a funny bloke. Strike it lucky was great. #ThisMorning’.”
In a recent interview with The Daily Star, Michael revealed his enduring passion for performing despite the challenges he has faced: “‘I can’t tell you how happy I am now. I’m the busiest I’ve ever been and I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.'”
He expressed his improved well-being at 71 compared to his younger years, emphasising his healthier lifestyle and the love for his work. Michael is currently co-directing the production ‘Laurel & Chaplin – The Feud’ at the Cambridge Theatre in London, which delves into the rivalry between Stan Laurel and Charlie Chaplin.
This resurgence in his career comes over two decades after a young man’s death at his swimming pool during a house party led to a decline in his public appearances. Michael lost his ITV job shortly after the incident in 2003, and his subsequent career endeavors were often overshadowed by ongoing legal matters.
While some viewers celebrated his comeback on TikTok, where he has garnered a substantial following, others remain concerned about his recent TV appearance and its implications.
Michael’s subsequent social media post gave the impression that he was unconcerned about his appearance on This Morning. After the show, the host posted a cheerful video of his arrival at the studio, which he shared with his 1.7 million TikTok followers. In the footage, he could be observed engaging in conversation with the production team and Linda Robson from Loose Women.
He also took a selfie alongside Craig Doyle and Josie Gibson, including the caption: “Thank you for having me @This Morning x.”
TikTok supporters swarmed the comments section to commend his performance during the interview.
One user commented: “Someone needs to give this man a TV show ASAP!! You are truly missed, Michael!!”