A body language expert breaks down Holly Willoughby’s ‘nervous’ return to This Morning
Holly came across as ‘inauthentic through disingenuous smiles and disengaged eye contact’
Today saw Holly Willoughby return to presenting on This Morning following her annual summer break, and the Phillip Schofield saga. Following Phillip Schofield being axed from the show, Holly took an extended summer break this year, but was back on the sofa with Alison Hammond today.
It’s been revealed by body language expert Darren Stanton that Holly felt “unsure” as she presented with Alison, “who made presenting look easy and effortless.”
Speaking on behalf of Spin Genie, Darren picked up on Holly’s body language, and noted she was fidgeting on camera – which is a “sign of impatience and nervousness”. He then explained he saw the presenter “tilting away” from Alison when sitting on the sofa, suggesting she found Alison’s presence “overpowering.”
This Morning kicked off today with a performance from the cast of Mamma Mia, which some viewers said was “peak cringe”, whilst others were grateful Holly was back as usual.
Darren added it was “clear” Holly is still adjusting to being back on TV, following everything that’s happened in the last couple of months. He said: “Alison comes across as super relaxed, comfortable and confident. She makes it look easy and effortless. It’s clear Holly depends on her co-hosts when she is presenting, but Alison could own the room.
“When the pair were standing up and speaking to the camera, Alison had her hands down to her front, while Holly had her hands to the side as well as touching her fingers. This fidgeting is a sign of impatience and nervousness. She definitely comes across as nervous, unsettled and unsure. It’s clear it’s very much new to her and she’s still adjusting.”
Whilst he said “Holly is good at what she does”, Darren felt as though Holly came across as “inauthentic through her disingenuous smiles and disengaged eye contact.” He observed that Alison was “quite animated” and “super confident” but when Holly was next to her on the sofa as they presented as a duo, Darren noted “we see Holly tilting herself away to the left. This suggests she finds Alison’s presence a bit overpowering. It’s a way of saying, ‘This is too much for me.’”
He said that Alison touched Holly’s hand a few times throughout the show, and made strong eye contact with her. “This is to show she is here to support Holly,” Darren said. “She wants to make her feel supported. Holly hasn’t yet made that gesture with Alison, and that tells me Alison has a much stronger authenticity and rapport with Holly than she has with her.”
Darren concluded: “I have seen Holly masking a couple of her smiles. This doesn’t suggest she was lying, but she could be wanting to put on a front to protect how she’s feeling. It shows she isn’t completely comfortable on the sofa. She also displayed a twitching gesture with her fingers, which suggests she wasn’t feeling completely secure at that moment.”
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