Anne Robinson says she ‘would never get away with’ Weakest Link swipes today amid backlash

Anne Robinson questions Weakest Link contestant in old episode

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Anne Robinson was known as The Queen of Mean during her The Weakest Link heyday between 2002 and 2011. However, the television favourite now believes that concerns about the mental welfare of contestants would damage the chances of the show returning.

I don’t think half the things I said then I could say now

Anne Robinson

The Crosby-born presenter, 76, frequently asked contestants hoping to land a huge cash prize if they were stupid.

In one episode, Anne told one contestant that she was “lazy” after discovering that she was working part-time shortly after giving birth to a child.

Since the show went off the airwaves in 2017, many have commented on Anne being “ballsy”.

While others claim her brutal shutdowns would no longer be accepted.

One clip of the flagship programme that has since gone worldwide saw Anne ask why a contestant was “dressed like a lesbian”.

Speaking of her quips, the new host of Countdown said: “I wasn’t exactly drowning kittens but I would never get away with all that now – times have changed so much that I don’t think we could even make The Weakest Link today.”

She went on to tell the Daily Mail: “I don’t think half the things I said then I could say now, like ‘Are you really that stupid?’ or ‘Why are you so fat?’

“That would be off-limits, everyone would be too worried about the poor contestants’ mental health. Everyone would be too worried about sending them home with… ‘issues'”.

Following on from her success on The Weakest Link, Anne has been inundated with offers to appear on programmes such as Strictly Come Dancing and I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, but has turned down every opportunity.

The former Watchdog anchor admits that she doesn’t require attention from those types of shows, which she claims are for people who “want to bolster their popularity”.

Speaking of her decision to return to screens on a regular basis, she admits that she was “intrigued” by the show that “tickled her fancy”.

On Countdown, Anne will be joined by Rachel Riley and Susie Dent, admitting that she is fond of the idea of three women fronting one of the nation’s biggest shows.

Anne will take over from current host, Nick Hewer, later this month and will sit alongside lexicographer Susie and Rachel, who hosts the numbers and word segment of the programme.

Speaking of Anne’s arrival, Nick said: “I’m sure the fans will soon take to Anne Robinson as a duck takes to water, Countdown is the star.

“The presenters come and go, it’s their job to look after Countdown and make sure when they hand it over to the next one it’s in just as good shape as when they picked it up.”

“That’s our job, we’re just curators,” he added.

While announcing that she would be joining Countdown, during an appearance on Steph’s Packed Lunch, Anne said that she would be planning to “tone down” her “nastiness”.

She went on to discuss her iconic “You are the Weakest Link, goodbye” catchphrase, saying: “The catchphrase just came about on the pilot when I got really cheesed off with a contestant and I added the goodbye.”

Admitting she was “beyond thrilled” to be taking the helm of Countdown, Anne quipped: “The show is almost as old as I am and just as historic!”

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