The star, who built his brand as the hard and non-nonsense trainer on The Biggest Loser has seen his brand come under question after some less-than-stellar moments.
‘It’s funny to see Steve Willis outside of his Commando character,’ says Matt Denby, host of WHO’s popular TV podcast, Binge List. ‘We’re used to seeing him grunting all the time and being really stern, and here he has another face and another voice – it’s really weird.’
WHO TV critic Clare Ridgen went one step further, telling Binge List listeners that the Commando may need work harder to rescue his image.
‘He’s actually got the look of fear in his eyes,’ she says. ‘Which means he can never go back and do that Commando thing on Biggest Loser. Because we’ve seen him c****ing himself before a challenge.’
This year’s celebrity cast has already been mired in controversy, with Russell confessing in an interview with Binge List that his choice to appear on Australian Survivor likely means he will now not star in the upcoming Legends season of the US show, which will mark its 40th season.
Admitting that appearing on the Aussie show has ‘jeopardised so much’, Russell conceded, ‘I know for a fact that I was going to get called for the next Legends’.
But when questioned about whether his notorious past on the program meant his future prospects on the show were already highly dubious, Russell conceded he would always be an immediate target for other contestants.
‘They’re just so jealous of me, I don’t know what it is, but they’re so not wanting to be my friend,’ he exclusively told the podcast.
Listen below to the full discussion on this week’s Binge List – which features a special guest appearance by Hamish Blake and Andy Lee.