Dancing On Ice 2013: Fans call for Jason Gardiner to be sacked over “locked-in syndrome” jibe at Shayne Ward!

by Lynn Rowlands

jason gardiner

It’s been revealed today that TV watchdog Ofcom has received complaints from viewers of Dancing On Ice after judge Jason Gardiner told contestant Shayne Ward – after his performance of Livin’ La Vida Loca in last weekend’s School Disco themed week – “It was more like Livin’ La Vida locked-in syndrome.”

Jason’s remarks caused Shayne to nervously laugh, while his pro-skate partner Maria Filippov looked puzzled and bemused.

However, some viewers found Jason’s comment far from amusing, or bemusing for that matter, and many took to Twitter to express their anger at what he’d said.

One wrote, “Jason Gardiner is disgusting and should be sacked.”

Another remarked, “Jason Gardiner should be removed.”

And Anthea Turner, who was of course voted off the show on Sunday, said, “That’s the worst. I don’t think he thought that one through.”

Locked-in syndrome is caused after a stroke or brain injury, and, as the name suggests, causes total paralysis with the sufferer often able only to move their eyes.

You may recall that Tony Nicklinson – who died last year – fought a lengthy legal battle to be allowed to die as he described the horrifying trauma of being alive in a body that won’t function as “pure torture.”

tony nicklinson

Sadly, Tony lost his legal battle, however, just weeks later, he died after contracting pneumonia.

But getting back to Jason’s remark, The Sun reports that The Stroke Association’s Patrick Olszowski said, “All stroke survivors deserve support, compassion and understanding.”

The paper adds, “Initially Jason tried to defend himself, tweeting: ‘I think it’s good to bring taboo topics into the open.’”

However, last night he told TV Biz, “I sincerely apologise for any offence caused. That was never my intention.”

What are your thoughts on what Jason said? And do you think he should be sacked from DOI for his remarks?

Here’s a reminder of Shayne’s performance, and of what Jason said to him afterwards…

shayne ward

Lynn is an editor and writer here at Unreality TV and is a trained psychotherapist and the author of two books. She's addicted to soaps, period drama and reality TV shows such as X Factor, Big Brother, BGT and I'm A Celeb.