Top Gear supports LGBTQ rights as it continues to make show "broader"

Dan Seddon
Photo credit: BBC Studios / Lee Brimble

From Digital Spy

A day after the BBC's hit motoring show Top Gear returned to our screens, the team are now sharing how they're showing solidarity with the LGBTQ community in the new series.

During the new series, the starry new line-up of presenters – enter Take Me Out host Paddy McGuinness and ex-England cricketer Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff – filmed a segment in Brunei, shortly before the country's Sultan issued a new law declaring that homosexuality and adultery would be punishable by stoning to death.

In a show of support to the LGBTQ+ community, new Top Gear host Freddie Flintoff has revealed that they've now given the cars used in the film a little makeover, painting them in rainbow colours with plans to display them later in the series.

Speaking about filming in the country in an article on The Guardian, Flintoff explained: "We flew home on 28 March. That date is important because when we landed we found out that – as we'd been in the air – the sultan had announced new laws making homosexuality and adultery punishable by stoning to death.

"We were horrified. Like millions of other people around the world, I utterly condemn Brunei's actions. No one deserves to be stoned to death, whoever they love. Love is love."

He continued: "We would never have filmed in Brunei had the law been announced beforehand. Even though it has since been claimed that the laws will not be enforced, the threat still stands, and even the threat is an appalling abuse of human rights."

After explaining that the show "thought very hard" about whether to air the film during the new series or not, Flintoff confirmed that they would show the segment after all.

Photo credit: Ashley Knotek Rex/Shutterstock

Related: Top Gear's Chris Harris reveals show changes after new presenting line-up

"We shot it before the change in the law, and both the Gurkhas and other Bruneians worked incredibly hard to make it happen," he added.

"We don't want all their efforts to be for nothing. So we've decided to go ahead and show it. Oh, and we've given the cars a little makeover, as you can see. We hope you like what we've done."

It comes after Flintoff's co-hosts Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris recently told Digital Spy that they think the series is a lot "broader" now.

"I'm really pleased with it," Chris said. "Everyone I've worked with on the show before, it's been great fun and I'm proud of all that work, but this is a different Top Gear. I think it's broader."

Paddy added: "There's little changes like when we go on the foreign trips we interact with the locals a lot more now, which has never been done before. I like the fact that it's just a little bit broader for everybody."

Top Gear airs on Sundays at 8pm on BBC Two.

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