TV & Movies

BGT Ofcom complaints soar to over 21k as Ashley Banjo shares threats from trolls

Britain's Got Talent has been hit with over 21,000 Ofcom complaints over the weekend following Diversity's performance.

The Black Lives Matter inspired routine has infuriated 21,673 viewers as they rushed to Ofcom to log a complaint against the ITV show following the groups dance on the popular show recently.

It has risen by nearly 7,000 complaints over the weekend as on Friday it was reported that 15,000 viewers had reported the routine to the platform which monitors TV in the UK.

The routine has sparked mass debate that the dance was "too political" to be broadcast in the talent show.

Diversity's performance was trolled due to it including a scene where a white police officer knelt on the neck of Ashley Banjo in reference to the death of George Floyd in America and the BLM protests that followed.

The dance was set to the spoken word poem The Great Realisation by Tomfoolery and choreographed by Banjo to incorporate some of the biggest news events of the year.

It's now become the second most complained about moment on TV of the last decade, Roxanne Pallet's Big Brother 'Punch Gate' being the first back in 2018.

Ashley took to social media on Sunday to talk about the response to the show, revealing threats he'd received from trolls.

Sharing 10 screenshots of cruel messages he'd been sent, Ashley wrote: "No I don’t mean ‘criticism’… I mean ‘Racism’.

"I mean hate… I mean the very thing that makes every single second of that performance and every single complaint worth it.

He continued: "I didn’t want to even shed light on any of this directly. But here’s just a small selection from the past week.

"And please don’t worry about or feel sorry for me… Feel sorry for the people that endure this kind of abuse and have no voice or platform.

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"Feel sorry for the people that have been singled out, abused and in some cases murdered because of the colour of their skin," he added.

"The only saving grace is that this is the vast minority… But for all the people asking or wondering – yes it is very real and yes it does exist."

One post read: "If you don’t like living in a white country go live in Africa.

"I think you would genuinely feel more comfortable there. As would I if you did."

Meanwhile, another said: "How dare a group of blacks call themselves 'Diversity'!"

BGT continues on Saturday at 8pm on ITV.

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