Katie Price transforms into Dermot Bannon with hair extensions and barbie tracksuit

Katie Price is described as a “21st century icon” at the start of her latest reality film, Katie Price’s Mucky Mansion (Channel 4, Wednesday). She is, we are told, a model, businesswoman and privacy activist. But it’s clear those accolades aren’t enough for the influencer formerly known as Jordan, who, with that muddy Channel 4 vehicle, is embarking on a new career as a home makeover guru.

Price is the ultimate cooking pot celebrity. For some, his ability to turn the c-lister infamy gained as Jordan into a continuing career is deeply fascinating. She’s proof that, even in an age as full of distractions as ours, you can still be famous for being famous. Others would be happy never to see her on television again.

Neither perspective is likely to be changed by Mucky Mansion. Price is planning an ambitious upgrade to his 8,000 square foot property in Sussex. Previously the residence of Lord Maude of Horsham, the estate has been plundered by local scoundrels and is in a state of disrepair. However, the physical damage pales in comparison to the emotional trauma Price suffered throughout his time in the house – including the end of his marriage, the death of his horse and multiple kidnapping threats. “Everything accumulates in your brain,” she says.

Price generally seems more interested in modeling her pink helmet than examining architectural plans.

The overhaul she has in mind is radical. The rooms will be emptied, the gardens remodeled. And she plans to decorate one of her children’s rooms in “Jurassic Park” style, with teddy bears cut in the middle and glued to the wall (you will have fond memories of the Jurassic Park scene in which half-bears plush emerge from the paneling).

Home improvement TV would be bleak beyond belief if everything went according to plan. Who wants to see wealthy, contented people happily building their dream homes? And so, in keeping with the unspoken pact with the public, Price’s Mucky Mansion is soon overwhelmed with setbacks. Price damages his new chimney, much to the resigned horror of builder Steve. And she generally seems more interested in modeling her pink helmet than examining architectural plans.

Mucky Mansion nearly came unstuck the week before the airing when Price was arrested for allegedly violating a restraining order taken by her ex-husband’s new fiancée. It was on the heels of a court appearance last year after she was in a car accident while under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

None of that drama makes it to the screen (Price casually references a recent stint in rehab at the Priory). But the show’s reluctance to tackle the messy reality of Price’s life doesn’t make Mucky Mansion unattainable, and at the end of the first episode, the star added another check mark to his long list of accomplishments. She transformed into Dermot Bannon with hair extensions and a Barbie Girl tracksuit.

David R. Brewer