A ‘vulnerable-looking’ person When This Morning was booed at the National Television Awards 2023, Holly Willoughby resorted to her co-star Alison Hammond.
When the ITV programme was announced as one of the contenders in the daytime category, the audience booed, with the prize finally going to The Repair Shop, during the London event on Tuesday evening (September 5).
It was the first time in 12 years that this had happened. This Morning did not win, despite Holly making a rare statement about her ‘tough year’ while walking the red carpet, an evident allusion to the scandals that have rocked the show.
While Holly, 42, and Alison, 48, appeared to laugh off the awkward boos, a body language expert said that there was more going on than meets the eye.
Judi James said that the Wylde Moon founder, who just returned to This Morning after a lengthy summer sabbatical, used the new Bake Off presenter as a’shield’ and displayed ‘clingy’ behaviour.
She continued: ‘Holly took a self-diminished, vulnerable-looking role with her body language, at one point leaning into Alison and using her as a shield as she put her torso behind her arm and placed a hand on Alison in a clingy gesture.
‘Alison was presented as the star of the show during the awards, looking straight into the camera and doing comedy poses for her audience as Holly sat beside her with one arm folded across her own lap in a barrier ritual.
‘Holly’s smile did look a little forced and when Alison was featured Holly pursed her lips as she turned to clap her colleague with a childlike, small clapping gesture with her hands held high.’
Judi explained under pressure Holly enters into a ‘vulnerable child mode’, while Alison goes into ‘comedy leadership mode’ and fellow This Morning star Dermot O’Leary, 50, becomes ‘more stoic and unruffled.’
She continued: ‘Alison splayed when the cameras came to them, at one point leaning over Holly and stretching her hands out. Dermot sat with a warm grin as their clips were shown and was cheering open-mouthed like a fan during their call-out, suggesting resilience in the face of any booing.
‘Under pressure it looked like Holly goes into vulnerable child mode, Alison goes into comedy leadership mode and Dermot just looks more stoic and unruffled.’
Holly, who had been overlooked in the TV presenter category, was finally defeated by Ant and Dec for the 22nd time in a row, but she continued to dismiss her lack of recognition.
She afterwards dug into a McDonald’s burger to cap out her night after congratulating The Repair Shop’s Jay Blades on his victory against This Morning.
She spoke on her ‘tough year,’ which included the loss of her longtime This Morning co-host Phillip Schofield, who admitted to lying about having an affair with a runner.
While speaking to The Sun she added: ‘It has been a difficult year for everybody but what’s lovely is you find that people rally around you and the goodwill is there.
‘People want things to move on. It feels different.’
National Television Awards winners
Bruce Forsyth Entertainment Award
The Graham Norton Show
Serial Drama Performance
Danielle Harold (Lola Pearce, EastEnders)
Sarah Lancashire (Catherine Cawood, Happy Valley)
The 1% Club
Paul O’Grady: For The Love Of Dogs
Bobby Brazier (Freddie Slater, EastEnders)
Lewis Capaldi: How I’m Feeling Now
The Repair Shop