Lee Mack addresses BBC Freeze the Fear criticism as breathing leaves celebs crying

The show may have been filmed at the start of the year but it appears ‘cynic’ Lee Mack was thinking about what Freeze the Fear viewers would be thinking as they watched the celebrities take part in an overwhelming breathing exercise.

The six-part BBC One series, which started last week and is co-hosted by Holly Willoughby, was back for a second episode on Tuesday night (April 19) and saw the eight celebrities who signed up for the show facing their latest challenges from the ‘Iceman’ himself, Wim Hoff.

However, viewers have already expressed their confusion at the format after seeing the stars of the show stripping down to their swimwear and jumping into a hole in a frozen lake and completing a terrifying forward-facing abseil down a 500 foot icy cliff edge to taking a 15-second cold shower this week.

READ MORE: Holly Willoughby dubbed ‘bond girl’ over latest Freeze the Fear look as she shares behind-the-scenes snaps

As well as the cold shower, which will be part of their daily routine while in the Italian Alps with the time increasing by 15 seconds every day, the celebs – including ex-EastEnders star Tamzin Outhwaite, rapper Professor Green, former Manchester United footballer Patrice Evra, Strictly Come Dancing professional Dianne Buswell, and TV presenter Gabby Logan – took part in a breathing exercise.

The Dutch extreme athlete invited the contestants to lie down on a yoga mat before talking them through a breathing technique he has become well known for and involves holding your breath for up to three minutes. The breathing technique, designed by Wim, aims to release deep emotions as part of his three-form method.

The celebs took part in a breathing exercise

As all the celebrities took part in the exercise, Holly and Lee watched on a camera from outside, witnessing tenor Alfie Boe starting to move around his mat, while dancer Dianne ended up curling up and sobbing. Later, sports presenter Gabby told Wim that during the exercise she saw an image of her late brother who died aged 15, when she was 19.

A self-confessed cynic, comedian Lee addressed what people at home may have been thinking while watching the scenes. He said: “Even my slightly cynical mind know this will do them the world of good. They’re going to feel great today.”

It left most of the stars in tears

Later, as Holly and Lee sat down with Wim to discuss the exercise, Holly said: “There are people without a doubt who are watching this at home who are going, ‘Hang on a minute’. They’re not going to believe it because it’s a stretch for them. What would you say to them?”

“Just try it once,” Wim replied before Lee said to Holly: “I’m probably the more slightly cynical one than you,” before adding: “If I was watching this on the TV I would think ‘are they doing this to play for the camera’. I guarantee they weren’t. That was real. I know that 100%.”

And both Lee and Holly were right about what viewers were saying watching at home.

“I’m so confused what is going on, why is this breathing making people cry #FreezeTheFear,” @sophierich_ards tweeted.

@Rustybobs commented: “Not sure I fancy any kind of breathing exercise if it makes you burst into tears #FreezeTheFear.”

Lee and Holly Willoughby chat to Wim Hof after witnessing the breathing exercise

“#FreezeTheFear ha, ha, ha. Unintentionally caught this. Who the hell commissioned this ? The bit I saw seemed to consist of the eponymous Wim doing the worst version of ‘let it go’ I’ve ever seen,” @DodgyValley complained.

Others, however, were very much into it.

“Whose just tried Wim Hof breathing having watched @bbc #FreezeTheFear?? Hands up,” @jojet5 asked.

@TangledKnitter said: “#FreezeTheFear was POWERFUL tonight. And they were just BREATHING.”

“Wim Hof should be on prescription. Wow!! #WimHof #FreezeTheFear,” @NatalieEvs76 wrote.