Richard Madeley put some Good Morning Britain viewers off their breakfasts today as he talked about sex and S&M before 8am.
The former This Morning host, who is standing in for Piers Morgan this week, raised the subject as the show debated whether romantic fiction should be more politically correct.
Joining Richard and Susanna Reid to share their views were authors Johanna Trollope and Adele Parks, and dating expert Nadia Essex.
Johanna and Adele both agreed that moving forward, romance novels should be more in line with the “me too” movement and “reflect the world we’re living in”.
This caused Richard to ask, “What about 50 Shades?” referring to E L James’ raunchy hit novels which famously feature S&M scenes.
Adele felt 50 Shades wouldn’t be as well-received if it was published today, while Johanna felt the books were “not about sex but money”.
This left Richard, who is married to Judy Finnigan, to talk about bedroom antics, saying: “Of course it is about sex!”
He added: “This time of day we have to be careful how far we go with this but there’s no question in many bedrooms submission is what goes on, it’s a fantasy, so why shouldn’t you write about that in a sexually driven novel?”
Nadia agreed, saying she thought novels should be about escapism and fantasy and “not a handbook for life”.
The debate and Richard’s input left some viewers squirming.
“Richard Madeley talking about s+m,” one wrote on Twitter with a green-faced emoji.
Another said: “Eww Richard talking sex and bedrooms at 7.43
Others said they were “cringing” over Richard’s comments and compared him to comedy character Alan Partridge.
Meanwhile, another was just gutted Piers Morgan had missed the debate, writing: “Upset
@piersmorgan isn’t on #GMB today talking about #50shades with @susannareid100 would of made my year.”
The debate wasn’t the only Richard moment making headlines today.
Viewers did a double take when he commented on a dress worn by weather forecaster Lucy Verasamy.
When she said she was worried her denim dress might “shrink in the rain”, he joked she should “pop outside at once and test it out!”.
Lucy replied: “Just test it out? Thanks for that, Richard!”
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