ast night on SAS Australia, 17 Aussie celebrities volunteered for the toughest test of their lives, a condensed, but very real, version of the Special Forces selection course.
Some recruits arrived with a point to prove, while others are out for redemption. Nothing prepared them for a baptism of fire when Chief Instructor Ant Middleton set them alight, in a test of their nerves and ability to remain calm under pressure.
Olympic swimming legend Geoff Huegill was the first to face interrogation, talking through weight gain – and loss – and the shame and guilt he felt after he and his ex-wife were arrested for cocaine possession.
“In the blink of an eye our life turned upside down,” he said. “I had to make the call to leave my family. I definitely have regrets, my biggest one would be not being in my kids’ lives on a daily basis because of the marriage separation.”
Later, a terrifying drill saw pairs of recruits strapped into a submerged aeroplane as it flipped upside down underwater, before having to make their escape from the murky depths.
A panicked Melissa Tkautz overcame her crippling fear and went through with the task, proud of her effort, despite failing the exercise. However Melissa’s lack of confidence alarmed the DS and when questioned, she admitted her lifelong battle with low self-esteem.
“Years and years and years of being told you’re either too fat, too skinny, your hair’s not right, your face isn’t right, this constant putting you down, you’re just never good enough,” she said. “It’s not that I hate myself, I just can’t find any kind of love for me.