EXCLUSIVE River Monsters' Jeremy Wade on Sam Smith 'fisher-them' row

EXCLUSIVE River Monsters star Jeremy Wade says fishing already has a ‘non-clunky’ inclusive term as he urges people to use ‘angler’ after Sam Smith revealed their dream of becoming a ‘fisher-them’

  • Sam Smith told One Show they would like to be a ‘fisher-them’ – not ‘fisherman’
  • Viewers of BBC programme were left baffled by his use of gender-neutral term

One of Britain’s most famous fishermen today gently put down Sam Smith’s claim to be a gender-neutral ‘fisher-them’ on the BBC’s One Show this week.

Jeremy Wade, 66, host of the ITV hit television series River Monsters, told MailOnline that the ‘reality’ is that the vast majority of fishing enthusiasts are male and are happy to be called fishermen – and that angler is ideal for anyone else.

Sam, 30, had pulled up Ronan Keating when he referred to the non-binary singer as a ‘fly fisherman’.

The pop star, who does not identify as exclusively a man or a woman and uses the pronouns they/them, said the Boyzone singer should use a gender-neutral term: ‘Fisher-them’, adding: ‘I love fishing! Yes, I do! Yeah I’d love to be a fisher-them’.

Viewers were baffled and Mr Wade said today: ‘Unfortunately “fishermen” does reflect the current reality, but things are changing and I’m all for that changing more’.

He said that they ‘already have an inclusive non-clunky term’, angler, which he ‘would like to see in more everyday use. It’s great to know that Sam is one of our increasingly diverse number’.

He added: ‘Angler as a term trips off the tongue and is familiar to a lot of people. It’s anybody who fishes with an angle — the old-fashioned name for a hook’. 

Sam Smith announced on the One Show they would like to become a ‘fisher-them’ one day

Jeremy Wade – ITV’s River Monsters star holding a goliath tigerfish – says that angler is the gender-neutral term Sam Smith should use

Viewers of the BBC’s The One Show were left baffled after Sam Smith claimed they dreamed of becoming a ‘fisher-them’ on the programme.

The singer, 30, was asked about their fishing hobby before correcting a presenter who appeared to ‘misgender’ them by asking whether they would like to be a ‘fly fisherman’.

The non-binary pop star was speaking on the show following their raunchy performance at the Brit Awards, which sparked more than 100 Ofcom complaints.

One Show host Ronan Keating asked Smith: ‘You’re a big fan of fishing?’

The Stay With Me singer replied: ‘I do love fishing, yes! Yeah, I’d love to be a fisher-them.’

Keating asked: ‘What, like a fly fisherman?’

Smith replied: ‘I’d be any type of fisher-them.

‘I think I would like to, one day, I’d just like to end my days fishing. Like sitting on a bank.’

They added: ‘I do it on the sea and I do it on lakes. I’ve never done it alone, someone’s almost taught me.’

Mr Wade, pictured holding a 6ft man-eating goonch catfish, said he welcome more diversity in fishing. Sam’s One Show appearance came after the singer performed at the Brit Awards, where they wore a quirky inflatable latex outfit on the red carpet 

Viewers of The One Show were left baffled by the comments as Smith described their love of singing 

Many online expressed their confusion at the term used by the singer.

One Twitter user shared the video, saying: ‘What fresh linguistic hell is this?’

Smith recently made headlines for their outlandish Brit Awards performance of their new hit single Unholy with singer Kim Petras at London’s 02 arena last weekend.

A spokesman for Ofcom told MailOnline: ‘We received 106 complaints about The Brit Awards on ITV1 on 11 February.

‘The majority of complaints related to Sam Smith’s performance, with the remainder about the use of offensive language and consumption of alcohol.’

It comes just a week after Grammy viewers slammed Smith and Petras over their ‘satanic’ performance of Unholy.

Smith had earlier appeared on the red carpet wearing a quirky balloon-like latex outfit made by fashion designer Harri.

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