Keith Lemon reveals the Christmas gift that left him red-faced on live TV

Keith Lemon Through The Keyhole
(Image credit: Talkback)

Keith Lemon returns with a festive special of Through The Keyhole. Here he reveals his favourite ever celebrity home and the Christmas present that caused major embarrassment on live TV...

Keith Lemon, the alter-ego of comedian Leigh Francis, is back rummaging round more celebrity  homes and causing havoc for a festive special of Through The Keyhole.

Jonathan Ross, Lorraine Kelly and Jimmy Carr are the stars in the studio playing sleuth and  tasked with guessing the owners of the abodes as Keith drops hints and clues.

The Christmas special will kickstart a new 8-part series of Through The Keyhole in January with studio panellists set to include Caitlyn Jenner, Danny Dyer, his daughter Dani,  Martin Kemp and Stacey Solomon.

What's On TV caught up with Keith to hear about the surprises in store, his favourite EVER celebrity home, why he loves Christmas  and which festive gift once left him red-faced on live TV...

Keith Lemon's exclusive interview with What's On TV

What's On TV: Tell us about the festive special. What can we expect?

Keith Lemon: "It’s a good bit of Christmas fun and the best new thing is, we’re not showing viewers whose house it is anymore so from now on people have to guess at home along with the celebrities in the studio. It’s much better, it’s like a whole new game. We've got some proper Hollywood legends coming up in the new series so I'm dead excited. I love having a good old nose round people’s gaffs."

WOTV: Did you have fun with Lorraine, Jimmy and Jonathan in the studio?

KL: "Well we’ve go two broadcasting icons and a comedy legend. I class them all as friends. I love my job and I’m not lazy but if we’ve got a funny panel it means I don’t have to do as much work! Jonathan is someone I’ve always looked up to, Jimmy is a very funny man and Lorraine is a very good sleuth. She would make a very attractive Miss Marple."

WOTV: Christopher Biggins also pops at one celebrity’s home and helps with the clues doesn’t he...

KL: "Yes, lovely Biggins! He’s the embodiment of Christmas because of all the panto he does. He owns Christmas and I love him. I love panto too, it’s as much a part of Christmas as pigs in blankets."

Keith Lemon, Jonathan Ross, Lorraine Kelly, Jimmy Carr

Keith with Jonathan Ross, Lorraine Kelly and Jimmy Carr Pic: ITV/ Talkback (Image credit: Talkback)

WOTV: This will be your sixth series of Keyhole. Which houses over the years have really stood out and have there been any surprises?

KL: "It’s pretty much always a surprise to me, you can never second- guess a celeb’s home. They’ve either got more stuff than you were expecting, or less, or they’ll be cleaner than you were expecting or dirtier! The one house I thought, 'I would move in here right now', was Jack Osborne’s in LA, it had such a nice vibe. It was the perfect size and I loved his taste in décor and furniture. If I could move it over here to London that would be brilliant."

WOTV: What’s your favourite festive tipple?

KL: "I don’t normally drink wine but at Christmas I can’t get enough of mulled wine. Before I drink it I give it a really good sniff and try and inhale it. It’s the smell of Christmas. I also love the smell of Christmas trees but you can never smell them in people’s houses once they’re chopped down. I’ve got a plastic one because it stays all bushy and lovely. If you get a real one, by New Years it just looks like an old cigarette in the corner, all bashed in and brown and rubbish! I love Christmas. I never understand it when people say they hate it. You have a bit of time off, you see friends, you can get pissed every day without any guilt."

Keith Lemon

Keith Lemon has the key to more celebrity homes Pic: ITV / Talkback (Image credit: ITV)

WOTV: What are you like with Christmas presents? Are you a good shopper?

KL: "I’m actually very organised. I make out on the telly I’m a puerile imbecile…yeah, I’m puerile but I’m not an imbecile. I always get all my shopping out of the way early so it’s all done a month or so before. It means I can enjoy December and drink mulled wine in boozers with big fireplaces! People always say, ‘We must have a drink before Christmas!’ Like we’re all going to die after Christmas or something."

WOTV: What gift would you like to receive this Christmas?

KL: "I always say to friends, anything from Vivienne Westwood, doesn’t matter how big or small! That makes me sound a big high- end doesn’t it! I love her clothes and I would wear anything by her. ITV once bought me a Vivienne Westwood key ring in the shape of a penis. I was on This Morning and it accidentally flopped out of my jeans pocket. I got a lot of tweets saying, ‘You’re showing your penis Keith!’. People thought I did on purpose… I promise you I didn’t!"

WOTV: What is the best Christmas present you’ve every received?

KL: "I love it when my mum makes me something. She used to be a seamstress, sometimes I just send her pictures of stuff and say, 'Can you make me this?' She’s made me all sorts, a coat with crochet sleeves, shirts. I like a bit of sewing too, I’ve got my own machine. I’m a very modern man!"

Keith Lemon: 'I wanted my leggings tighter than Olivia Newton-John's, so I painted my legs black!'

Keith and Paddy do Grease Pic: ITV/ Talkback (Image credit: ITV / Talkback)

WOTV: You’ve also got The Keith And Paddy Picture Show Christmas Special coming up haven’t you?

KL: "Yes we’re doing Gremlins. I’m a massive fan of the film, I once went to a special screening in London where Zach Galligan who played Billy Peltzer was doing a Q and A. I was with my girlfriend and afterwards I went over with my little action figure to get it signed. I was all star struck and nervous, I really wanted to ask him to come on Celebrity Juice so I said to him, ‘Are you working much over here?’ and he said, “Well I’m working right now aren’t I?’ I rarely get star-struck, people are just people, but I've loved Gremlins since I was a little kid so to meet him was amazing. He came on Celebrity Juice, we became friends and now he’s in our version of Gremlins. Fans are going to love it!"

WOTV: We hear you have some guest roles from puppets too?

KL: "Yes, in the original they used real animals but we’re using puppets instead. We’ve got Gordon the Gopher, Zippy from Rainbow, Basil Brush…these animals are national institutions.We were very excited to have them! We also have some 80s comedians in there, because in the film they used the voices of 80s comedians, so we’ve got Su Pollard and Les Dennis. John Thomson plays the dad and Kara Tointon’s in it too."

WOTV: You’ve also got a Christmas special of Celebrity Juice. Have you been watching your mate, and regular team captain, Holly Willoughby host I’m A Celebrity?

KL: "Pardon my French, but I f***ing love that show to the max! When she was first on, I sent Holly a text saying I was so proud of her. I’ve always felt like Holly’s naughty older brother, I just feel super proud. And I’m good friends with Emily Attak and John Barrowman. When Emily smashed that viper challenge, oh my God, she was brilliant,  there is NO WAY I’d ever have been able to do that. I hate snakes!"

Through The Christmas Keyhole is on Friday, Dec 14th, 9pm  ITV and the new eight part series begins in January


Tess Lamacraft
Senior Writer for What's On TV, TV Times, TV & Satellite week,

Tess is a senior writer for What’s On TV, TV Times, TV & Satellite and She's been writing about TV for over 25 years and worked on some of the UK’s biggest and best-selling publications including the Daily Mirror where she was assistant editor on the weekend TV magazine, The Look, and Closer magazine where she was TV editor. She has freelanced for a whole range of websites and publications including We Love TV, The Sun’s TV Mag, Woman, Woman’s Own, Fabulous, Good Living, Prima and Woman and Home.