BBC America to Edit 'Lazy Mexicans' Comment From Top Gear for U.S. Broadcast
The pubcaster was forced to apologize to the Mexican Ambassador after the comments aired in the U.K.
LONDON - Insulting comments about Mexico from the hosts of Top Gear won't make it on air on BBC America when the irreverent motoring show airs next week.
The scene, which forced BBC bosses here to apologize comprehensively to the Mexican ambassador, has been cut from the US show as part of the edit. The British motoring show - now in its 16th season and famed for its macho irreverent tone - triggered a firestorm of controversy after anchor Richard Hammond described Mexicans as "lazy, feckless, flatulent and overweight" and said their vehicles mirrored the same characteristics.
Co-host James May then weighed in to add his view that Mexican food was like "sick with cheese on it," to which Hammond quipped "refried sick."
Not to be outdone, fellow anchor Jeremy Clarkson boasted that the show would escape criticism because the Mexican ambassador would likely be asleep on his sofa. "At the Mexican embassy, the ambassador is going to be sitting there with a 'remote control like this,'" he said, snoring for full effect.
"They won't complain, it's fine," Clarkson said in a show that aired Jan 30th.
Following the broadcast, Mexico's Ambassador to Great Britain complained to the BBC, protesting the show's "outrageous, vulgar and inexcusable insults."
In reply, BBC bosses apologized and said the comments had not been made to be insulting, but that they were simply part of the dialog on a stunt-based show that had humor at its core: "Whilst it may appear offensive to those who have not watched the program or who are unfamiliar with its humor, the executive producer has made it clear to the ambassador that that was absolutely not the show's intention."