If you haven't already seen, TV favourite Reggie Yates has a fantastic and interesting new BBC Three three-parter following the extreme views that are conveyed throughout Russia. Last Monday saw episode 1 follow immigration and the far right Nationalist movement in Russia - if you didn't see it, it was quite frankly, really bloody scary.
On Monday episode 2 airs and unfortunately, the people of Russia do little to morally redeem themselves. Reg heads to Saint Petersburg to find out more about homophobia in Russia. I actually like how diverse the world is and the fact that people can be who they want to be so I don't know at what point some people think they have the right to threaten or hurt someone just because they don't share the same views. I’m a straight guy and growing up in the modern day world, I know plenty of gay and lesbian people as I am sure 99.9% of the population do, and do you want to know something super shocking…they aren't any different from ANYONE else.
Shockingly, the programme reveals recent statistics showing 70% of Russian people believe homosexuality is wrong which is really reflected in what you watch. I found when I was watching, there were moments that made me so infuriated, how could someone think it is okay to possess and even vocalise views that in many cases leaves people fearing for their lives.
It’s a really hard-hitting documentary and how Reg kept his cool I have no idea - followed around by a man in a blue jacket (that might I point out has a crooked nose that could really do with some attention) it was a constant battle and at times you can really see how shocked Reg is over some of the comments openly made and the actions some people will take. It seriously is really shocking, referring to one moment where a man references the bible and says all homosexuals should be stoned to death…it’s 2015, it’s disturbing at the hate and threats that spew from the venomous mouths of some of these truly abhorrent individuals.
I like how Reggie tries to give people a chance, he doesn't go in negatively, he’s open to them speaking and giving their views…even if it is in a Sauna whilst being whacked with a stick by a naked mega-homophobe…definitely a bizarre moment…
Reg really tackles these issues well and doesn't try to hide his shock and disbelief, at one moment laughing in despair saying he really had no words to respond with. You can see the frustration in his face but (somehow) he keeps his cool throughout like a true professional. I really hope BBC Three plan more of these programmes, it gives an insight into places you wouldn't necessarily visit and personally after watching, I would never visit or be able to support such a nation.
You don't want to miss this episode and you certainly don't want to miss Reggie doing a bit of Russian dancing…it’s rather impressive! Catch Reggie Yates’ Extreme Russian on Monday at 9pm only on BBC Three.
If you missed episode one, catch up on iPlayer, here!