Well, this is awkward.
They’re Britain’s most enduring double act, nailed on to add a presenting trophy to their presumably very large cabinet every year until the day they hang up their (wrecked) mics for good, but Ant & Dec’s popularity isn’t as split down the middle as you might think.
A new survey from reliable market researchers YouGov has revealed that the British public, if pushed, would take Dec over Ant, which really makes you wonder if we need to reconsider the order in which we say their names.
Dec is preferred by 24%, compared to Ant’s 17%. The reasons behind the controversial Dec favouritism aren’t clear, but we’d argue that it’s because he gets the slightly better one-liners in I’m a Celebrity and, for some reason, was allowed to wear sunglasses in the video for England’s official World Cup 2002 song, ‘We’re On The Ball’ (still good, by the way).
But when it comes to some of the other double acts included in the research, the Ant & Dec split looks insignificant by comparison. A whopping 51% like Morecambe over Wise, and 50% would take Mitchell before Webb. There’s a 10% difference in favour of Alexander Armstrong over Richard Osman (though the latter, we’d argue, has contributed more to society with his important Twitter polls), while Noel unsurprisingly trumps Liam 34% to 11%.
Fictional double acts were in the contest, too. Mario will be on the end of one hell of a Luigi death stare when the taller brother sees how lop-sided their vote was, and Gromit absolutely smashes Wallace into the ground. Loads more people like Batman than Robin, a revelation similar in scale to the grass being green. The most shocking outcome of all, however, which we deliberately left until last, is that Phil Mitchell – actual meme Phil Mitchell, the quite possibly immortal Phil Mitchell, appeared at your sister’s Freshers Week Phil Mitchell – is half as popular as Grant, despite being a resident of Albert Square for 14 more years than his brother.
Only one way to settle these double act debates once and for all, we reckon: fight.
(Main image: Rex, graphics courtesy of YouGov)