back to article Mexican woman gets litigious on Top Gear's ass

A Mexican woman has instructed lawyers to take action against the BBC's Top Gear over unflattering remarks made by the show's presenters about her native land. As we reported yesterday, the programme is already in hot water with the country's ambassador to Blighty after Richard Hammond likened a Mexican sports car to "a lazy, …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Michael Souris

    From whihc we can conclude...

    ...that rather than being lazy, feckless, flatulent, etc. the Mexican people are instead litigious, money grabbing, opportunistic, and share the same lack of understand of irony as their northern neighbors?

    1. thecakeis(not)alie

      Not too far north.

      Canadians may be opportunistic, but we do (usually) grasp irony and we tend to be motivated less by "personal greed/money grubbing" and a little bit more by "the common good" than the citizens of the other large country on the continent. Oh, not that we’re perfect – far from it – but I daresay that if you’re looking for cultural influences upon which to lay blame for this one, you shouldn’t be look *too* far north. Gotta defend the national pride and all, eh?

    2. Roger Heathcote 1

      Good on her...

      I don't much care if she's right or not, if it increases the chances of these embarrassing middle aged babies being removed from my telly then I'm behind her 100%. Litigiousness is no worse a quality in a human being than smug chauvinism and the world would be a far better place without their painfully stilted 'ad-libs'.

      Personally I'd quite like to seal Clarkeson in a lead box and shoot him into the sun but I fear that might create some sort of hideous mutant clarkeson with superpowers, a bit like in Superman 4 so I'd settle for just having him torn to pieces by wild dogs. But I digress...

      The irony, Michael, is that you clearly don't understand irony yourself if you think Hammond's comments were meant in an ironic sense - funniness and acceptability aside they clearly were not.

      1. Christopher Rogers
        Thumb Down

        Dry y'er eyes

        You and many like you will not be happy until TV is as bland as magnolia paint.

  2. Rob 81

    Some people...

    need to learn to laugh at themselves, we don't get angry when Americans portray us as all as camp, team drinking, bowler hat wearing idiots with bad teeth.

    Now I must bid you good day as I need to skip to the dentist. Ta ta!

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon


      "team drinking"

      That has fired up the old imagination I can tell you :D

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Laugh at themselves.

      I was in training at work once, were this guy, at the mention of the Spanish started banging on about them being really smelly and lazy, very much in the style of Jezza or so he thought.

      Anyway, a couple of people found it amusing, most didn't.

      Of course when the rather attractive woman in the room started to cry and had to leave the room (she was Spanish) nobody was laughing.

      It can be alienating enough being in a foreign country without their media implying you are a sub human.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I on the other hand

        work with a Spanish bloke who knows how to join in with banter. He is quite happy to take friendly insults about Spaniards as no one is upset when he throws insults back about the English. The world cup was a particularly good example of how our sense of humour works, the PC lobby would have had a heart attack had they been in earshot but both sides knew it was all friendly. When we got knocked out we were more than happy to throw our support behind his team and celebrate with him when Spain won.

        As for those poor dears who can't hear a joke without taking offence and having to see a therapist because of the emotional trauma - awww diddums, try growing up, getting a sense of humour and learning to deal with life like an adult.

        1. Alan Bourke

          Yeah it's all a big laugh ...

          ... I just hope your kids never have to live in a different country and hear that sort of thing all day in school, for example.

        2. Anonymous Coward

          Re: I on the other hand

          "As for those poor dears who can't hear a joke without taking offence and having to see a therapist because of the emotional trauma - awww diddums, try growing up, getting a sense of humour and learning to deal with life like an adult."

          Because adults use primary school playground terms like "awww diddums" when making a point? Seems like you could do with another trip through the (admittedly increasingly decrepit) education system in the hope that some of the lessons actually rub off, and then you might want to get a clue about harassment and how it can make people's lives miserable.

          Dropping the puerile "banter" would be a good first step for you, however, fool.

    3. Dagg
      Big Brother

      british about australians

      What about all the british comments about Australians and sheep...

      1. Argus Tuft

        @ Dagg

        gotta correct that one - everyone knows it's New Zealanders who like wooly overcoats.

        Aussies are the ones who suck at cricket.

      2. thecakeis(not)alie

        Autralians and sheep?

        Do I have my stereotypes all fildle-faddle-foo? I thought it was "New Zealanders/The Welsh and sheep." Aussies and sheep is a new one for me. Aussies and *beer* on the other hand...

      3. tim-e


        It's KIWIS and sheep, you idiot. We Australians do kangaroos.

      4. tony trolle


        normally the Welsh and sheep jokes here

      5. Sparx
        Thumb Up

        Or better still

        When they got the Australian car show persevered to turn up to the show in a prison transport van!

      6. Glyn 2


        Everyone knows it's New Zealanders and sheep

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The initial comments weren't xenophobic, however the reactions of some "individuals" gives one momentary xenophobic thoughts.

    The Germans, French, Polish and, Australians seem able to take a ribbing, and they get it far harder than any of these other nations.

    Here's some advice don't like the British wit? Go forth and multiply.

    I am pretty fed up of these people (and by these people I mean feckless idiots who like to try and make a name for themselves by piling into a bit comedy.)

    How long till some of these stupid laws get scrapped for giving idiots rewards for being pitiful?

    1. Steve Evans

      My thought exactly...

      Proving discrimination might be a bit tough though... Clarkson and pals have made jokes at the expense of pretty much everyone and everywhere, including each other. Which to me sound like the complete opposite of discrimination. Equal opportunities insulting.

      1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: My thought exactly...

        Again, not to fight any side in particular but "middle-aged white guys take piss out of each other" isn't especially convincing as evidence of equal opportunities...

        1. Steven Jones


          Top Gear is a comedy entertainment programme Sarah, not a documentary. I suspect that joke missed the mark rather, but if we are to legislate on questions of taste then we are on a slippery slope indeed.

          It's also a bit difficult to prove discrimination given the

          Also, I think you'll find that James May in not (by origin) middle class unlike the privately-educated Jeremy Clarkson.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          Equal opportunities has no place in comedy, Mexicans are more than welcome to create comedies featuring English fopps chugging down poorly selected spirits whilst talking about putting flags into other countries beaches and declaring them their own countries. Or that the nation is over run with speed cameras, cctv and, chavs.

          Though I'm sure you'd find some British folk complaining. It's just what people do.

          The last thing any of us (well most of us) want is bland sterile comedy that revolves around pronounciation mistakes and slaps with large fish (though these have their place.)

          British comedy has a long tradition of taking the piss out of sterotypes foreign and domestic, and the people that use these to good effect know full well that they arn't true and that their audiance know this as well. I doubt that there are many people that think Mexicans really do just wear sombreros and sleep all day whilst occasionally spitting tobacco.

          The sterotype however is still open to ridicule.

          British comedy is often at its best when it's being caustic, both inwardly and outwardly, people are welcome to be offended but to remove all possibility of offence is to leave the medium a hollow empty husk not worthy of air.

        3. Anonymous Coward

          As a middle-aged white guy ...

          ... and straight and Christian ^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h^h God-botherer (must remember to use the local language) working in the NHS, I find that I am in the ONLY demographic that people are allowed to take the piss out of at work. It's so tiresome that I'm thinking of gaining a disability just to make it all stop.

          Really, Ms Bee, I'd expected better of you than that (see icon). Unless I've missed your point, of course, which is perfectly possible: after all, as a bloke, I don't really do the communication thing properly, do I?

          Do you need to ask "why anonymous?"

          1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

            Re: As a middle-aged white guy ...

            You're not anonymous to me.

            My point was that white guys, as is generally accepted, are the dominant racial and social group in most of the world. So if there is pisstaking, it's generally done from below, as one might take the piss out of one's boss.

            If you find that people don't take you seriously if you claim to be victimised on this score, that's why. It's not likely to be personal - it's just that you occupy a certain position of strength and are thus, up to a point, fair game. (I'm a white Westerner myself so I inevitably cop for a bit of this, and I don't have an issue with it.) This isn't something I've made up in my own head - it's kind of how it works, as I think you probably realise.

            I'm not saying everyone has carte blanche to be horrible to white males - I think it's generally a good idea to avoid being horrible to anyone - but history dictates that a joke at the expense of a white bloke (for his whiteness or his blokeness or his white-blokeness) does not land with the same force as others.

            So my point was that a couple of people from the same group - a group generally accepted as powerful - rib on each other a bit, it doesn't count for an awful lot if you're building that particular case, ie they're beastly to everyone which lets them off the hook. You can't justify a white guy taking the piss out of non-whites on the basis that he takes the piss out of other white guys... it doesn't work like that. I do think it's true that the Top Gear guys have a pop at pretty much everyone on that same crude level, which does put this kerfuffle in some perspective and lessens its seriousness - but still, it was unneccessary and mean-spirited.

            1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

              Re: Re: As a middle-aged white guy ...

              It works the other way too - Mexicans taking the piss out of each other isn't any evidence of equal opportunity piss-taking. People within the same group happily insulting each other is an entirely different matter - it's a consensual thing.

              I never suggested anything about blokes not being good at communicating - there's no need to get defensive there.

            2. Aggellos
              Thumb Down


              Dear sarah

              So why is it that it is ok for russell brand, bill hicks, frankie boyle etc to give a a 40 minute verbal rape aimed at a nation, but if a cupple of middle class white chaps in loafers do it it is racist, they never once refered to colour just a nation and they have said worse about us scots or the french.

              But yes I still think they are funny and love the show, you know what you are getting when you tune in so suck it up or turn it off.

              The media make me laugh when top gear went to iraq they where not inbeded in a 40 vechile road trip or handing out press releases from men in shiny boots and short hair and they tried to show Iraq as country filled with people not war ...but hey bet you did not write a story about that.

              1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

                Re: comedy

                I don't follow.

                Please don't compare Frankie Boyle to Bill Hicks, though.

                1. Aggellos

                  we know

                  they are all comedians/ entertainers personally i dislike both bill hicks and frankie boyle probably for the same reasons you dislike the TG terribad 3, but hey because you like Bill hicks it is fine for him to do a one man show where he hammers mexicans but a 3 minute poke in TG is to much for you?

                  double standards.

                  Top Gear is as much a motoring show as I have got news for you is a hard hitting current affairs program it is all comedy sarah even if you don't like it.

            3. Evil Auditor

              Re Re: As a middle-aged white guy ...

              Sarah, I see your point. But in my opinion, nothing is worth as much as not to take the piss out of it. This is, basically, my carte blanche to be 'horrible' to everyone. However, never should one forget that the audience is what makes the difference between a joke and an insult. It's the simple but all-important question about which pisstaking is appropriate in which situation.

              Mexicans being insulted? Well, said comments on TopGear where arguably among the low end of its humour. But TG is a pisstaking show... (and showed how thin-skinned Mexicans are?)

              Or is it ok to take the piss out of German, 'merkins, French, British, etc. but not Mexicans? When you say pisstaking is generally from below and white blokes won't be offended as much as others is it because they are, in your opinion, above the others? I hope not.

        4. Steve Evans

          Re: TG equal opportunities

          Sarah, can you imagine the uproar if they replaced Clarkson with a black woman, and then made the same "pubes for hair" comment they regularly make towards Clarkson?!

          The BBC's switchboard would melt from the influx of complaints! Most of which would come from the white middle-class who feel they should be offended on behalf of any black people who didn't see the program... All completely forgetting that the target of the joke, Mr Clarkson's replacement, was laughing about the joke and not at all offended.

      2. Mat Child

        Reminds me of..

        ... Mr Mackay from Porridge

        "I do not discriminate, I treat you all with equal contempt"

  4. Sam Liddicott
    Thumb Down

    A mexican tramp?

    So a mexican car was compared to a mexican oaf...

    It's hard to tell if that insults the car or the oaf more, but I don't think it insults anyone else.

    If you compare an english car to a tramp, it hardly insults all english people - only the car or the tramp (or both or none).

    1. Steven Knox


      They didn't just compare a Mexican car to a Mexican oaf. They were expounding on their purported* belief that automobiles reflect the characteristics of their national origin. In other words, they weren't saying it was oafish because it was like an oaf, but that it was oafish because it was from Mexico.

      * as in jokingly -- as in stupid jokingly. The correct way to deal with the type of idiots who think this kind of boorishness passes for actual humor is to ignore them -- especially when they're on an eminently ignorable show like Top Gear.

    2. Suburban Inmate

      That got me thinking...

      What about a car that runs on special brew?

  5. Frederic Bloggs

    £1 million?

    "said the Telegraph" should really be "hopes the Telegraph". The Torygraph has, after all, got years of form on BBC bashing. I imagine other parts of the print media are likely to suggest even greater figures.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "BBC bashing"

      That started in the 80's when they refused to cow-tow to Thatcher by broadcasting tory propoganda.

      The tories have been bitching about them ever since.

  6. irish donkey

    I've been to Mexico

    And I had a lovely time and would recommend it to anybody.

    Everybody knows what Clarkson and Co and like. I don't think their comments although stupid are of any real consequence. Some of the comments they make about cars are equally ridiculous. Can't see many car companies threatening to sue.

    I would imagine Mexico would be more concerned about the fall out from Swine Flu that than Top Gear.

    Who can remember their statements about Truck drivers? Funny

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I remember the truck comments...

      I rushed round to make sure my brother (a truck driver) watched that episode... He laughed his head off all the way through!

  7. Alan 6 Silver badge


    "The possible hit to the BBC's wallet could be £1m in damages, the Telegraph says"

    Is that £1m to be shared amongst all Mexicans who were offend by the remark, or just to the woman who sees an easy way to make a quick buck.

    We'll be as bad a the US soon with an ambulance chasing lawyer on every street corner...

    1. The Beer Monster

      We'll be as bad a the US soon...

      We're already there and have been for some time.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Take it to Court?

    "it'll be the first to be heard under the Equality Act"

    Perhaps it was the BBC's intention to test the Act in court and start getting some precedents set.

    1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Take it to Court?


  9. g e

    So, I deduce that...

    1. Aussies have a far better sense of humour as they were ON THE SHOW having the piss taken out of them royally (goes for Germans, too, Sabine Schmitz and last TG's international Anglo-German compo, anyone? Fancy having less sense of humour than the GERMANS, cripes!)

    2. Mexicans aren't above trying to grub for some ambulance-stalking cash

    3. This woman is more of a Mexi-can't than a Mexi-can if she's STILL a student at 30 (or maybe she went back to school so she could play with shiny things)

    A deuce of a case, what, Holmes, old boy?

    Oh and I think you'll find it's political correctness against the world rather than anything against political correctness. No-one hates simple truth & facts spoken plainly more than the feckless and likely flatulent PC community (in general, not in TG land!).

    1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: So, I deduce that...

      Yeah but to be fair it's a completely different dynamic when you're taking the piss out of someone who can immediately answer back. You can't really argue on that front.

    2. George of the Jungle
      Thumb Up

      comments here

      Top Gear has ragged on Americans for ages, and we haven't sued them once (as far as I know...)

      I'm waiting for a Top Gear US vs UK battle next. That should be hilarious.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        > "Top Gear has ragged on Americans for ages, and we haven't sued them once (as far as I know...)"

        I wouldn't be so sure. They done a Top Gear US Special, where they gave the cars away at the end for FREE to a Christian Mission in New Orleans. A lawyer threatened to sue Clarkson for misrepresentation after she heard the car wasn't a 1991 Camaro (it was a 1989 model), but would drop the suit on payment of US$20,000.

      2. Steve Evans

        Re: comments here

        Yeah, I can't wait to see your colonial boys try to drive the track, it's got tight corners!

        Is there actually a TG US?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Political Correctness

      "A deuce of a case, what, Holmes, old boy?" Jesus f*ing Christ, really? I think it's you that needs a sense of humour "old boy".

      I think you might be, just like Clarkson, an old, fat half-woman.

      Also, the reason that everything seems 'obvious' to you is because you are stupid not because you are smart.

      1. hplasm

        Clarkson's lawyer-

        heard that. He wants £1M for what you just called him.

    4. thecakeis(not)alie

      I think it's all about realtive power.

      Australians and Germans have really no reason to feel threatened or inferior to the varied denizens of the UK. When the power imbalance is skewed, things get a little bit...squiggly.

      Take Canadians as an example. We tend to let such things slide off our backs...unless it's the Americans poking fun. (For the last time America, we aren't your hat. We're bigger and we're on top, if this were prison, you'd be *our* bit*h!)

      A lot of it is probably driven by perceived inequality between the cultures the individuals came from. The UK is far better off than Mexico in many ways. Mexico is catching up, (in part due to Mexico's economy improving, in part due to the UK collapsing,) but from the perspective of a Mexican it might well honestly look like being bullied by a bigger kid.

      It doesn’t have to be a real advantage. It has only to be a perceived one. Canada is again a great example. Pretty much everything about Canada is more awesome than the US. We have more freshwater reserves, more hydrocarbon reserves, larger mineral deposits, a functioning economy, a reasonably chance of pushing our federal, provincial and municipal debts back below 10% of the GDP and oh, yes…real Education, Health Care and Social Services.

      Regardless of all the numerous advantages that Canada has, the Americans have one exceptionally important one that they absolutely love to wave around. With Canada having only 34 million, our GDP – while higher per capita than that of the US – is still small in absolute terms. With that comes the inability to fund a large enough military to defend ourselves against that rather large bully to the south. Until the day that Canada becomes part of the European Union each and every one of us knows the terrible, terrible truth.

      Despite the fact that Canada kicks US ass in almost every way…we only exist because they let us. For now. I hope and pray that CETA is the first step along the road to Canadian independence from the long shadow of the erratic people with nuclear weapons to the south. CETA may herald a more permanent socio-economic link that will one day see Canada take it’s rightful place in the union.

      Until that day, Canadians will always overact a little when it is the Americans (as opposed to pretty much anyone else) doing the ribbing. Perhaps not unlike the Mexican woman taking this “little joke” a little too seriously.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No worries

    If she's only basing the claim on equality she hasn't got a leg to stand on. TG slag off everybody equally with the possible exception of the French but then that's to be expected.

    1. Anton Ivanov

      You obviously have not watched Clarkson and Renault Espace

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Anton Ivanov

        Anton, is it possible that you've got the wrong end of the stick?

    2. Anonymous Coward

      If she hasn't got a leg to stand on ...

      ... it's disability discrimination, which is despicable.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @AC 10:58

        Top marks. Either you're particularly astute or maybe everybody else understood but didn't feel the need to show clever they are.

  11. JDX Gold badge

    stupidity contagious?

    Seems proximity to the US puts one at risk of catching gottasueitis.

    How can a random chick sue on behalf of remarks against her country?

    I hope TG make fun of it in future episodes, aren't they filmed fairly close to airing? Maybe a Mexican special...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Nuff said.

      I'm from Liverpool. If i was able to sue the BBC every time i heard one of those annoying scouse stereotypes, i could retire. As with most stereotypes, there *are* scousers like that, but their not common. (I imagine the same is true of Mexicans)

      I'm sure my collegues around birmingham and Yorkshire will agree.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Free Speech laws

    The sooner they pass a free speech law the better. Time for the fascist lefties to be thrown out.

    1. ElReg!comments!Pierre

      Interesting concept

      "fascist lefties", really? How does that work exactly? A bit like imperialist commies?

      1. thecakeis(not)alie

        Fascist Lefties

        Is that like consumerist capitalists?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        There is a certain kind of "conservative" that thinks that everyone who doesnt subscribe to their exact views are "Liberal" and "Lefties". Even when the policy is quite obviously far right.

        Hell, there are some who consider the Nazi's Liberal, on the rather dubious distinction that Nazi is short for "national socialist", All Socialists are Commie Liberals, therefore The Nazi's were filthy liberals.

        Its more common in the US than here.

  13. Sceptical Bastard

    As bad as each other?

    While I agree that the Mexicans seemingly can't take a joke - albeit a piss-poor one - it is hard to champion the sort of deliberately confrontational oafishness of Top Gear and the trio of excruciatingly bloke-ish Neanderthals who present it.

    Ask yourself this: would you rather be stuck in a pub with a 30-year-old female jewellery designer or Jeremy Clarkson?

    Mine's the blanket with a hole in it

    1. Naughtyhorse


      err clearly jezza!

      He's clearly a demented old facist, as in tune with the bloke in the steet as any french bird excaiming 'let them eat cake'

      But a clearly demented old facist with a witty turn of phrase.

      As opposed to po faced curmudgeon

    2. Alicia


      Definitely Clarkson. No two ways about it.

      Anyone who sues (or attempts to sue) what is essentially a comedy show for mocking a stereotype takes themselves waaaaaay too seriously.

      I don't think Clarkson can ever be accused of that.

    3. GrumpyJoe


      talking about the latest jewelery styles and downing an organic G&T, or shooting the breeze with one of the most 'interesting' people in the country..

      let me think...


      hard one this...

    4. TeeCee Gold badge

      Ok, I aksed myself.

      However, to get the question correct I also appended the words; " who's PC-fixated and right up her own arse" to "jewellery designer".

      The answer came back Clarkson. Far more likely to be a good laugh over a few beers and he's very unlikely to have me arrested for suggesting a curry later, whereas any suggestions I may make to Ms Prissy there after a skinful are bound to cause trouble.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: All of the above

      The correct answer is...

      Does the jewellery designer have big tits?

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      that's appalling

      "in a pub with a 30-year-old female jewellery designer"

      What are you implying here? That she will be better company because she is a) 30 years old b) female c) a jewellery designer or all three? This sounds like (at least) ageism and sexism to me.

      For shame!

    7. Neil Cooper

      I'll take Clarkson

      @sceptical bastard

      >> would you rather be stuck in a pub with a 30-year-old female jewellery designer or Jeremy Clarkson?

      I'd opt for Clarkson every time. Being stuck with some vacuous bimbo would drive me nuts. Clarkson would be great for a chat and a laugh.

      To be honest, I laughed at the Mexican comments but also inwardly flinched, especially as he said no mexicans would sue... that seemed to be a blatant dare.

    8. Sooty

      Clarkson, definately

      Unless he starts going on about Isenbard Kingdom Brunel, then I'd be forced to club him to death with the nearest 30 year old, female, jewellery designer!

  14. Hooch181
    Paris Hilton

    And to think...

    if no one had kicked up a fuss, all this would go away and nobody would remember it.

    So what do these people do, lawsuit, make a big deal in the press. Now nobody can forget it, and what's worse...

    I thought it was quite funny and didn't take it in any serious context.

    Why are butthurt people there own worst enemies?

    Paris, cause I bet she loves a big burrito!

  15. Rambo 1


    Not only are these Mexicans fat, lazy, and flatulent, but they're also touchy!

  16. Anonymous Coward

    And in other news

    the Australians are suing because of the same episode which.... oh, wait. They can take a joke. Amazingly, even the Germans can take a joke (the presenters arrived in Spitfires, for christ's sake!)

    Anyway, the Mexicans have allowed themselves to be portrayed in this way for the last few hundred years. Where was the lawsuit over Speedy Gonzales?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Who Pays?

      Who's going to pay the lawyer? The Mexican lady or will it be the Mexican taxpayer?

      1. Mark 65

        Re:Who Pays

        The US tax-payer via international aid?

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Re: And in other news

      "Amazingly, even the Germans can take a joke (the presenters arrived in Spitfires, for christ's sake!)"

      The Germans can probably take it as a joke because the country (at least the western part) has had the chance to reflect on, and for the most part draw a line under, a particularly painful period in their history. Thus, many Germans watching are likely to be reasonably well-educated people able to see that Clarkson and pals are just a bunch of braying Britards who, like a significant number of people in British popular culture, are obsessed with the continual reframing of historical glory in increasingly simplistic and juvenile terms, resulting in idiotic Britards jeering puerile insults at Germans - even in this day and age - about things which neither party's parents were alive to experience, let alone accept any responsibility for.

    3. Andrew Norton

      perhaps we should be suing instead

      because the bit of the show we didn't see (the episode was aired in Oz months ago as their season openerbut with the Ferrari bit and the star replaced by a tour of England) was them going on about the British, and their cars, which included an Allegro and a Marina. Of course, they kinda took the sting out of it by then going to hte IoM and having a big blast in 3 modern british cars - the Atom, a Nobel and something else I can't remember.

    4. This post has been deleted by its author

  17. thejackle


    She must be needing a nap after all that activity.

  18. NoneSuch Silver badge


    Never mention another Mexican manufactured car ever again on the most popular motoring show in the world.

    Lets see what sort of objection Mexican bureaucracy comes up with for that.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    expecting to get a million quid by holding your hand out via the courts when you can't possibly demonstrate a loss equalling that amount sounds somewhat lazy and feckless to me.

  20. Efros
    Thumb Down

    Humour Injection required

    Title says it all.

    1. Noons

      Re: Humour Injection required

      Quite right, lack of humour seems to be contagious. The comments from the Top Gear studs weren't funny, and neither were the kick-backs from the Mexican asses...

  21. Arnold Lieberman

    Must be dilfficult

    for the BBC, given its obsession with PC to be hosting a programme like Top Gear. They must hate it but can't kill it off as it collects far too many awards and makes too much money to ignore. I'm sure Clarkson is well aware of the power he wields.

  22. Mike Shepherd
    Thumb Up

    "But they're white..."

    Mention "black coffee" (or anything remotely connected to race) at the BBC and eyes will dart here and there in fear. If the breach should become public, copious and abject apologies must follow, as will sackcloth and ashes (if the offender isn't just asked to resign). But the rest of us, apparently, are fair game.

    Go for it, Iris de la Torre!

  23. Shaun 1

    I think

    that the person is just angry at being called lazy for being Mexican, rather than because she's a student

  24. Mike Hartley

    So - no more repeats of Fawlty towers or Blackadder?

    Will the French now decide to sue anyone who shows the Cheese-Eating-Surrender-Monkey episode of Blackadder?

    This is crazy and I really hope that all this gets laughed out of court for being a huge waste of space and time.

    Time for people to grow up and focus on sorting out important issues rather than taking offence at a program which never pretends to be anything but a shouty, blunt and funny TV program.

    1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: So - no more repeats of Fawlty towers or Blackadder?

      Who among you shall be first to bravely correct this rashly-spoken commentard?

      1. Shane Orahilly

        To the point.

        "Bonjourrr, yah cheese-eatin' surrender monkeys!"

        ~Groundskeeper Willie, The Simpsons.

        No invasion of Poland or Rat au Vin in sight.

    2. The Indomitable Gall

      No lawsuits there.

      The BBC have been very careful not to show repeats of the cheese-eating-surrender-monkeys episode of Blackadder to avoid lawsuits. They've even avoided including it in any of the DVD boxed sets, to avoid lawsuits. They have removed all trace of ever having filmed the episode to avoid it being used as evidence in court. In fact, they were so concerned about lawsuits that they went as far as never filming it, never writing the script and never even thinking once about that line.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Waste of space and time

      The primary waste of space and time here are Clarkson and cronies. Sooner the license fee is spent on something positive or actually funny the better

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      me thinks the surrender monkey line was from Al Bundy in "Married with Children"

  25. squilookle

    This is getting ridiculous

    If the Belgians reacted this badly every time they were the butt of a joke in entertainment/comedy program, all the Belgians would be bloody rich.

    I feel the British and other nations take their fair share too from various sources, as others have already said.

    I enjoyed the entire episode of Top Gear and hope this over the top reaction to the section of the programme in question does not result in the changing of the programme or the pushing back of boundaries.

    Clarkson and Co: Keep up the good work.

    Mexican Ambassador and lady taking the legal action (especially the lady taking legal action): You have succeded in giving us a view of your country and yourselves much more negative than any television show could hope to achieve. Well done.

  26. Anonymous Coward


    If they thought that these comments by Top Gear were all the things they said then I hope nobody ever shows them South Park. Their heads would probably explode..... either that or they would just go drink tequila until siesta time

    1. Galidron

      South Park

      I believe they have censored episodes of South Park in Mexico.

      1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

        If SOuth Park is censored,

        Mexican viewers must be puzzled that these strange creatures in South Park only ever beep, and never use any words then

  27. Anonymous Coward

    @ Free Speech Laws

    "Fascist Lefties"?? By definition fascists are right wing, unless I've stepped through Alice's mirror recently.

    1. The Indomitable Gall

      You would say that.

      You right-wing Marxists are all the same.

  28. Anonymous Coward

    She has no fucking rights to sue.....

    She's an alien according to the papers "the woman is a "a 30-year-old jewellery design student in London" is what the has been said of her.

    WTF -- by this as an alien I got to believe she has NO rights to bring forward a suit at all. She's not a citizen, has no Permanent Residency RIghts / card so where the fsck does she get off? She should get OUT and go home!

    BTW I'm offended by Mexican TV -- it's in fucking Spanish and no one sits and explains it to me, thu it not only is racially offensive, it's violating my human rights.

    El Reg, please let me know who can I sue?

    1. TelePom


      I'd sue your parents if I were you, for allowing you to grow up to be a massive bell-end. Of course she can sue - anybody in the country has access to civil law, guest or not. Nobody "gives up all there rights" when they come to study here for fuck's sake, what planet are you on?

      The Asperger quotient on this comments thread must be off the scale. The least you xenophobic Daily Mail reading fuckwits should do is not post anonymously.

  29. A. Lewis

    I really really hope...

    ...That one day there is a judge who passed a judgement of 'lighten up and chill the f(udge) out'.

  30. Matt Piechota
    Thumb Down

    Irony, thy name is hamster

    What I find genuinely funny is using a racial stereotype is the lazy, feckless, although not flatulent way to do humo(u)r. Come on, they can do better than that.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well done

    From the article:

    She's represented by legal outfit Equal Justice, whose Lawrence Davies insisted: "These remarks were probably calculated and deliberate to fuel anger and hence boost ratings"

    Well, at least they didn't fall for that old chesnut, eh?


  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Methinks she doth protest too much.

  33. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    Mexico v Kazakhstan

    Does anyone know if Borat has relatives in Mexico? The country seems ripe for full-scale Borat treatment, for sure.

  34. Nic Gibson

    Impressive show chaps

    OK, so the comments on the show were fairly offensive even though obviously intended to be funny (there must be a certain sense of humor there). Gotta say that reading these comments makes me feel that the Top Gear team are probably slightly less xenophobic than the average El Reg reader.

  35. AJames

    Also upset about this

    I'm really quite upset about this. When are we going to get this episode of Top Gear on BBC Canada or I'd like to laugh at the Mexican sports car too! We always lag behind. :(

    Not only that, Jeremy hasn't insulted Canada in ages. Why the discrimination? Is it just because we don't make any genuinely Canadian cars?

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Duff case.

    The BBC will do OK if they just stick to their guns and defends it's rights to produce humourous material.

    If her so called legal advisers want to save some money they might want to read Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights which covers the Right to Freedom of Expression.

    The only legal advisers I know of that go by the name of Equal Justice are a bunch of employment lawyers, not exactly specialists in the relevant laws.

    Still, given the past craven cowardice of the BBC they are more likely to apologise than stand up for freedom.

  37. Fuh Quit

    I drive a Discovery

    That oaf Clarkson called me a murderer!

    This has not been proven in court.

    Should I sue? Or just keep grinning and take it as an entertainment show and not a factual masterclass?

    Fail for the short-arsed farty-bottomed Mexican woman called Sue.... ;-)

  38. s. pam

    I just had a brilliant idea

    Let's turn Aussie TG loose on / in Mexico. Take Pommie Stig and Kevin Stig with them.

    Much merriment will ensue on several fronts --

    1) The Aussie presenters are rubbish; I know I've been to a filming and walked out

    2) No one can whinge more than an Aussie, so add Pommie Stig in with his buddy Kevin Stig and the verbal pain will be incredible.

    3) Given Aussie TG might have a clue how to drive in dirt - let's give them a whole country of it.

    4) The wonderful will clear their back passages, so they can complain what a shit country Mexico is


  39. Tim Walker

    Anyone who thinks Germans don't have a sense of humour...

    ...clearly hasn't heard Henning Wehn yet. The self-styled "German Comedy Ambassador to Great Britain"'s act consists mostly of taking the anti-Teutonic prejudices exemplified by certain knuckle-dragging oafs in the British media (name your own exemplars) and turning them back on their originators.

    As you can imagine, Wehn had a field day on Radio 4's "The Now Show" last year, when England were knocked out of the World Cup...

    1. The Beer Monster
      Thumb Up


      Also has had numerous field days on Fighting Talk

      Jawohl. Send in ze texts! Acht, funf, null, funf, acht!

  40. Matt Hawkins


    James May likened a Mexican sports car to "a lazy, feckless and flatulent oaf with a mustache, leaning against a fence asleep, looking at a cactus with a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat".

    I think it was Hamster who actually mentioned "a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat" rather than James May.

    1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Significant point

      It wasn't the funniest thing I've seen on TV, so I can't recall it exactly, BUT...

      As Matt Hawkins points out, they didn't say Mexicans were "lazy, feckless and flatulent...", they said the Mexican car was like such a person - no nationality specified. So maybe it's a case of the cap fitting?

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Sense Adjusted

    "These remarks were probably calculated and deliberate to fuel laughter and hence boost ratings"

  42. Ron Luther


    Heh. I can hear Clarkson now:

    "We're sorry. We apologize. We were wrong. Turns out the Mexicans are actually quite full of feck."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Lots of Feck over there.

      All of it, in fact.

      I'm informed that Mexico is actually famous for containing Feck All.

  43. nsld

    I guess

    If they had referred to Mexicans as gun toting, drug dealing, mass murdering lunatics it would have been ok given the number of drug related murders in that fine country.

    In terms of equality Top Gear has never discriminated against anyone, they abuse all and sundry in equal measure.

    Nice to see an ambulance chasing lawyer joining the fun in the name of equality, clearly not doing it for the money.

    1. Elmer Phud

      Speedy Gonzales

      Underlay, Underlay!

      I was also distressed at the lack of references to kidnapping, mass murders, corruption, cocaine and pickup trucks bristling with expensive ordnance. I can only assume that Top Gear is sponsored by exporters of marching powder.

      It's a conspiracy by the B.B.C. I tell you!

  44. Gene Cash Silver badge

    BBC America! Get on the ball!

    Man, our new Top Gear season doesn't even start until Monday. At least they now show the entire episodes no matter how stuffed full of fat American commercials it is... (yes, even our commercials are fat and boring)

    I can't wait to see this episode, and see if it's shown or altered.

    1. George of the Jungle


      You can watch them without BBC America (with the insults and without commercials), if you use the Internet. I must do this as I refuse to pay Dumbcast, erm, Comcast any more money just to have BBC America. (My pref is finding them in newsgroups, but there are other ways...)

  45. Anonymous Coward

    Equality Act.

    ... despite the scaremongering when it was being proposed was designed to not impede free speech or comedians.


  46. Anonymous Coward


    now this woman that was "offended"...

    as top gear really has a cult following, its a bit like marmite, you love it or hate it, nothing really between....

    If this woman was watching top gear then I assume she is a fan of the show.. if this is the case then I assume she has enjoyed the ribbing that other nationals get... sort of like "I can laugh at you, but dont dare laugh at me"...

    or did the telegraph go searching for some mexican who in all truth had never watched top ger before and decided on this day to watch for the first time....if this is the case, the correct procedure should be to make sure you dont watch it again...

    oh, and I would sooner have a beer in a pub with clarkson, in fact, I would sooner have clarkson and palls running the government....

  47. Anonymous Coward

    Is that the sound of ...

    (a) three highly tuned sports cars accelerating all at once

    (b) three highly tuned a*holes accelerating all at once

    (c) innumerably many legal teams chasing a bit of business all at once

    (d) out of court settlement

  48. Archie The Albatross

    Irony, pronounced i-r-o-n-y

    This is the problem when you understand the words of a language but not necessarily the contextual meaning.

    Combine with the Great British Sense of Humour, (which can be impenetrable to Daily Mail readers, let alone foreigners), and further amusement is inevitable!

    Cue much harrumphing from the usual quarters, whilst in the background you hear lawyers booking an extra holiday. Possibly ordering a new car too.

  49. Ferret

    ...and that's why

    Mexico will continue to be relegated to the children's table at the banquet of nations until such time as they develop a sense of humor.

  50. The BigYin


    ...IIRC "Top Gear" seem to insult everyone equally regardless of race, colour of creed. At some point everyone gets a drubbing from the oiks.

    Isn't that equality?

  51. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Who cares?

    Does anyone really care if Top Gear is politically correct? Get over it.

  52. Gaz 5


    What I found odd about it was the amount of screen time the segment got. Usually on Top Gear it's a couple of throwaway pseudo-xenophobic comments from Clarkson that get shouted down by May & Hamster pretty quickly. This went on much longer than was funny. Besides, given Hammond's love for the Zonda as a car designed 'by a 10 year old', surely a car that they could've put in a Mexican wrestling mask had much better material than that?!

  53. 3.14159

    Kudos to Top Gear

    Top Gear hosts may be called ANYTHING buy liars. As a US educated Mexican living in Mexico, I am damn pleased somebody has the guts to say that the emperor has no clothes. I have worked for government agencies, and believe you me; I have had the displeasure to meet some of the most incompetent, corrupt and, yes, feckless people anywhere. As a consequence, this is a Country whose main export is illegals. In fact, somebody should take on the ambassador about his personal wealth, and his exhibition of fecklessness and stupidity when as attorney general, started the bloodiest period in Mexican history, as organized crime overwhelmed him. Where is Wikileaks when you need them?

    As far as that woman trying to sue the show, the UK should either deport her or have her executed in the Tower of London. It wouldn´t be a first.

  54. drfreak

    I have no problem with tea drinkers

    joking about Obese America. In fact, one of my favourite Top Gear episodes was when they drove through the south with things like "Hillary for President" painted on their vehicle.

    Maybe the Mexican woman is offended because she hasn't the humility to understand the British sense of humor.

  55. Steve Brooks


    Discrimination means treating one group different from another, however TG pile crap on all people, so how can they be accused of discrimination, who remembers the "one tank to Poland" skit? Didn't see any Germans sueing TG.

  56. Paul 135

    Hammond = EPIC FAIL. Can't do a Clarkson...

    As much as I love Top Gear and absolutely hate these so easily offended PC do-gooders who can't take a joke and a bit of banter, did anyone else not really find this all that funny at the time? I mean, it was Hammond who said it at the time and not Clarkson - I got the impression that Hammond was just trying to copy Clarkson to be "cool", but pulled it off really badly. I mean they didn't actually tell us ANYTHING about the Mexican sports car at all - only that it was Mexican and therefore would be shite.

    I get the feeling that if Clarkson had made the jokes he would have pulled it off much better than Hammond!!

  57. Nick Galloway


    Clearly the various traits levelled at the Mexican national traits do not include a sense of humour!

    Top Gear have been taking the mickey out of the Germans, French, Italians, Swedes, Russians, Australians, English, Scots, Irish, Welsh, Americans and a broad range of nationalities for years. Therefore they cannot be accused of discrimination as they are willing to find all targets in any audience.

    Interesting how none of the other nations took exception to the moments of mirth these boys bring to our lives!?

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lawyer Alert

    Class action for Libel anyone?

    Seems that if your a big enough star at the BBC you can get away with bad behavior - take Jonathan Ross for example (or his granddaughter).

  59. Mips
    Jobs Halo


    That was not xenophobia but stereotyping. That is probably worse.

  60. Matthew 3

    Looking forward to the court case...

    ...where she has to prove, beyond reasonable doubt, that she has never farted, has never been lazy and has never done anything that could be described as feckless.

    And then do the same for every single one of her fellow Mexicans.

  61. The Beer Monster

    Saint Stephen of Fry

    Is also in the do do.

  62. Scorchio!!


    Don't tell me; the Mexican individuals complaining about the Top Gear team will also make sure that no one from Mexico, Portugal, Spain (or any other country with a Hispanic majority, indigenous or otherwise) will ever describe white people as 'gringos'. Similarly, the British will never call Germans 'krauts' (after herbal butter), the French 'frogs' (after another dietary habit that sprang from siege economies), and the French will never call the English 'le rostbif'.

    Finally, when all undesired speech has been eradicated by socialism (such as that variety imposed on us by the last 'Labour' government, which encouraged all manner of bizarre legal challenges and convictions), the state will wither away and people will never, ever, ever thay nathty thingth about one another, cwoss my heart and hope to die, Julian Assange will live with Jesus in the sky.

    Sheesh. Sometimes there are stupidities in this world (like police officers referring drivers to the CPS for blowing their noses whilst driving) that can only be dealt with by extreme actions. To paraphrase from a friend of mine, ordinarily one would assume that stupidity would naturally self select *out* of the gene pool. However, and since it does not, one is left wondering if there actually is a purpose for intelligence. As it is, and given the soft restricting, straight-jacket blanket of PC that has been laid over culture in the UK and some other countries, with such insistence that it is absolutely correct and must be accepted (or we would be breaking some or other law or moral code), the nightmare appears to be hovering in front of us of George Orwell's dystopian nightmare, or perhaps Huxley's 'soma' ingesting Brave new world. The invasion by the state, driven by people with an agenda that appears to be hijacking it for ulterior motives, centralisation of government, these things demonstrate that people have forgotten what government is for and that politicians have too. As it is we are left with little choices in seeking to overturn interference by others, though we could of course vote for another party, but there is little to choose from them unless we select some more blatant radical form of stupidity.

    Now the madness has 'gone global', with it would seem little to stop it from escalating to its logical conclusion, a living form of the reductio ad absurdum.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: PC

      Surely you meant to send your comment as a letter to the Telegraph so that they can publish it in one of their books of previously unpublished letters to the editor.

      1. Scorchio!!

        Re: Re: PC

        Aside from the fact that Telegraph writers are not renowned for sprinkling (covertly and overtly) references to classical philosophy and modern literature in their material, shorely shome mishtake.

  63. Equitas
    Paris Hilton

    Now that she's raised the question of stereotyping of Mexicans...........

    Was the individual referred to as "a lazy, feckless and flatulent oaf with a mustache, leaning against a fence asleep, looking at a cactus with a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat" allegedly a male -- or was it perchance a female?

    Paris -- because she isn't Mexican and doesn't wear a moustache

  64. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Last three seasons?

    Why work at being funny when it's so easy being controversial.

  65. Anonymous Coward

    Did she even watch the programme?

    Seems many complaints these days come from people who only hear about these things afterwards, as if you had any sense, you wouldn't watch TV programmes or listen to radio shows that have a reputation for being liberal with their word usage that'll you're likely to find offensive.

This topic is closed for new posts.

Other stories you might like

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022