TV and Radio

Reggie Yates goes down to Acapulco to help take on the Mexican drug war

Reggie Yates, takes on the Mexican drug cartels in his latest documentary.

For the third week running the 24 hour news channels remain much more dramatic and interesting viewing than any televised drama.

A referendum that started with Wag the Dog type spin moved on to House of Cards type treachery and ended in a Madam Secretary situation with a chart show type cabinet reshuffle that seen Theresa May chop careers short like a Top Gear producer.

It's been depressing but fascinating, Sky News has been excellent, BBC News predictably safe and Channel 4 has set the gold standard.

British politics has never been seemed so American and the sooner someone commissions a drama based on events of the past few weeks the better.

In between flicking through the news channels I have occasionally dipped my toe in and out of non political based tele this last seven days.

Reggie Yates was once a popular wee poplet, a Radio One DJ and youth TV presented, but my oh my, how he's managed to change career path and done it with amazing success.

I was a big fan of his documentaries on race relations in South Africa post apartheid and the rise of white supremacy in Russia.

He has a lovely warmth and lightness of touch to his interviewing technique that seems to really get the best out of his interviewees.

He's basically a young man's Ross Kemp crossed with a more articulate Danny Dyer.

It's a shame that the BBC are restricting him to online channel BBC Three, he should be better utilised, that said there has obviously been a fair financial investment in The Insider, his latest series of investigations.

Reggie Yates in the Mexican Drug War, is the second in the series and as part of that he travels to Acapulco, which he rightly points out still sounds like the kind of location once frequented by 1950 Holywood starlets but is really on of the most crime riddled places on earth.

The breathtaking beautiful seaside destination once attracted 350,000 foreign tourists a year with all the spending power that they brought with them, but now only Mexicans holiday there because of the dangers from organised crime.

Yates joins part of the 56th Infantry Battalion to live the life of a soldier fighting in the war against the country's drug cartels.

It's a war against their fellow country men and one that it'll come as no surprise to hear they're not winning.

Just to put the danger into perspective on the day he arrived there had been nine murders in Acapulco - nine people in one day.

Despite pushing for answers almost all those in positions of authority who he tried to interview seem keen to play down the violence, and in ways that's understandable.

Mexico is a poor country and tourism provides a valuable life line, putting food on many tables and the violence is clearly impacting on tourist spending.

Watchable and informative, Yates gives an easily accessible insight into the issues faced by the country and while only available on iPlayer I look forward to seeing him bring his easy manner to a more mainstream medium soon.

Reggie Yates in the Mexican Drug War, BBC Three online.


I stumbled across The Face on Netflix, it's a modelling show, a bit like America's Next Top Model only with Naomi Campbell as one of the judges. (Don't judge me I'd a hard week and needed to push the serious stuff out of my head).

Anyway, she's been knocking about since the flood, Google claims she's 46 but seriously she still looks about 19.

She's breathtaking beautiful and also horrendously cutting to absolutely everyone, I love her, brilliantly, rubbish TV.

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