The segment starts with a close up of Sian’s face. It is screwed up in disgust and her neck is awkwardly twisted, as if she is trying not to face something. The camera zooms out, showing that Sian is up a ladder against the mucky dip. A wooden plank in her hands, she stirs the contents like a cauldron.
Sian: Euugh, hi there folks. This is far closer to the Mucky Dip then I’d like to be, but the crew warned me it was getting over-congealed in here.
She inches her face towards the vat and peers in with her lips pursed.
Sian: I think that’ll do it. Pwwwfff! The smell gets really bad when you churn up all these dregs!
Sian pulls out of the plank, feigning a struggle against the muck, complimented by a sucking sound effect. When she finally retrieves the plank, the goo covering it is predominantly greyish blue, with pinkish and straw-coloured streaks. Lumps deform downwards like stalactites before plopping off, and an object dangles from the end.
Sian: What on Earth is that?! Looks like an old sock!
The audience laughs. Sian descends the ladder and hands the plank to one of the guards.
Sian: Is that one of yours, Charlie? Take it away and destroy it in a safe manner! Dear me, the things I do for this show! [Approaches the cages] But of course, it will be far, far worse for one of our contestants, and deservedly so! Ladies, voting has been brisk as always, and I have here the midway scores, which may offer you a glimmer of hope or pang of despair accordingly. But before I reveal them, I think you should see what I’ve just seen. So without further ado…
Audience: …LET’S PREVIEW THE GOO!!
Sian: Indeed! Let’s preview that goo!
The bird’s-eye camera makes its usual spiraling zoom into the Mucky Dip. The gunge is made up of patches of a dirty greyish blue, a stale straw colour, and an unappealing reddish-pink. The colours have been swirled into intermingling streaks where Sian has stirred the goo. The scene then switches to the rim-side camera. The surface has a toe-curling lumpy texture and a dull finish, looking slightly crusted. Furrows are still visible where Sian has stirred. While all this is shown, an inset box cycles through the chastened faces of the three women.
Sian: Oh yes, let me tell you, a most unpalatable waft comes up when you break the skin on the top! Hold that image in mind, ladies, while we take a look at the midway polling:
Stacy stands stunned, her mouth slightly open. Her eyes keep flicking away from the screen and then back again. She clearly wasn’t expecting this result at all. In the adjacent cage, Lizzie too looks perturbed. She gazes upwards and whispers something that probably isn’t family-friendly. Deborah, by contrast, clenches her fists and hisses “yes!”
Sian: It’s another close one and that’s how we like them! Stacy with a nudging lead, but Lizzie very close behind. And Deborah… really Deborah I wouldn’t look too pleased, because you’re not that far behind. Stacy, are you alright there? You look like you’ve seen a ghost!
Stacy: I, erm… I…
Sian: [Turns to the camera] Stacy’s right to worry. But though we may be harsh on this show, we always strive to be fair. That’s why I’m going to give each of our contestants 15 seconds to address you the public directly, to explain why you shouldn’t condemn them to the Mucky Dip. [Turns back to the cages] Deborah, the nation has lent you its ears; let’s hope it doesn’t charge too much interest.
Deborah: [in animated fashion, waving her arms] I came on this show cos I’m sick of hand-wringing nanny-staters giving us lenders grief! My clients are grown-ups and if they wanna be mathematically-challenged schmucks then they got every right to be math…
The klaxon blasts and the audience boos. Deborah makes an obscene gesture at them.
Sian: No need for that, if you don’t mind! Now Lizzie, if you would please make the case for your defence.
Lizzie: [sternly] There’s a wee thing called double jeopardy which means I shouldn’t be here facing retrial. A vote for me is a wasted vote, because I will find a loophole that lets me wriggle out of this – just you see!
The Klaxon blares and the audience boos loudly.
Sian: [scoffs] Well good luck with that Lizzie, because we have some excellent lawyers too!
Lizzie tries to look dismissive but her blinking shows she’s rattled.
Sian: Now Stacy, it’s your moment to plead with all those viewers you extract licence fees from.
Stacy: [shaken but defiant] Now look here! I don’t know why anyone should vote for me! If you’ve already bought your TV licence, you have nothing to fear from me. And if you haven’t, then you shouldn’t be watching! SWITCH OFF!!
The klaxon snarls and the audience boos profusely.
Sian: Stacy, has it ever occurred to you that your paid-up customers might be just as fed up with the TV licence?
Stacy’s frown indicates it hasn’t occurred to her.
Sian: [turns to the camera] And that’s all there is to say folks. The Mucky Dip is ready and waiting, but only you can decide who goes in it. Keep those votes coming in and don’t miss the concluding part of the show, when one of these women behind me will get her comeuppance! Ooo yeah!