Entertainment

Saturday 18 November 2017

Jeremy Clarkson: The highs and lows of the TV star

The Grand Tour and ex-Top Gear host is currently in a hospital on the Spanish island of Majorca.

Jeremy Clarkson (Dominic Lipinski/PA)
Jeremy Clarkson (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

By Sherna Noah, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Jeremy Clarkson’s pneumonia diagnosis comes after a colourful couple of years for the controversial TV star.

The Grand Tour and ex-Top Gear host, 57, is currently in a hospital on the Spanish island of Majorca.

Here is a look back at some of the recent highs and lows for the motoring host.

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Jeremy Clarkson (Isabel Infantes/PA)

Lows

Clarkson was dropped from flagship BBC show Top Gear in 2015, over what the BBC called an “unprovoked physical attack” on producer Oisin Tymon.

His exit from the corporation came after a string of negative headlines about the host.

The star’s jokes about lorry drivers murdering prostitutes, description of then-prime minister Gordon Brown as a “one-eyed Scottish idiot”, his remark that striking public sector workers should be shot and Clarkson’s use of the word “slope” to describe an Asian man sparked controversy and caused a headache for BBC bosses.

In 2014, Clarkson begged fans for “forgiveness” following claims that he used the N-word while reciting the nursery rhyme Eeny, Meeny, Miny Moe. Clarkson told his Twitter followers he loathed the word and had made every effort to make sure he did not use the slur, but realised it might have sounded as though he had.

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The Grand Tour’s James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond (Amazon Prime Video/PA)

Later, the Top Gear presenters were forced out of Argentina in a row over a number plate used while filming the series, which officials claimed was a reference to the Falklands War.

Highs

A petition calling on the BBC to re-instate the presenter after he was suspended over the Tymon incident attracted more than one million signatures, becoming the fastest growing in the petition site’s campaign history.

Not the sort of bangles I usually choose on holiday

A post shared by Jeremy Clarkson (@jeremyclarkson1) on

After his BBC exit, fellow presenters James May and Richard Hammond remained loyal, ruling out returning to the BBC show without their co-host.

“Me and Hammond with a surrogate Jeremy is a non-starter, it just wouldn’t work. That would be lame, or ‘awks’ as young people say,” May told MediaGuardian at the time.

In 2015, Clarkson and his co-hosts ended months of speculation to announce a new deal with Amazon Prime.

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Chris Evans (Nick Ansell/PA)

Top Gear returned to the BBC in 2016 fronted by new host Chris Evans, alongside Matt LeBlanc and others.

But critical reviews and ratings were dire and Evans later quit as host. The show later recovered with LeBlanc alongside Chris Harris and Rory Reid.

In November 2016, the first episode of Clarkson’s new TV effort became available to stream on Amazon Prime Video and the programme received rave reviews.

Press Association

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