BBC Breakfast guest rolls eyes over ‘woke’ question Please be quiet

The Pact: Christine warns Connor not to cross her

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Rakie Ayola stars as social worker Christine Rees in the second season of the BBC drama The Pact. The award-winning actress appeared on Monday’s instalment of BBC Breakfast to discuss the series but she ended up rolling her eyes when host Victoria Fritz asked her about the show being “woke”. Viewers flocked to social media to lambast Victoria’s “horrible” question which Rakie “handled with class”. 

The second series of The Pact, which is based in Wales, follows Christine’s grief in the wake of her losing her son Liam. 

However, the plot thickens when she is confronted by a stranger claiming to have a connection to her family which no one could have imagined.

He also bears a striking resemblance to Liam which confuses Christine’s other grown-up children. 

Rakie, 54, was describing her experience of working on the series but was taken aback by one of Victoria’s questions. 

The host said: “There will be some people who see this and will say this is a woke version of a Welsh family.”

As the actress rolled her eyes, Victoria continued: “I can see you rolling your eyes. Tell me.”

Rakie replied: “If anybody wants to say that to me, what I would say is explain what you mean by ‘woke’ and then we can have the conversation,” 

“If you cannot explain it, don’t hand me that word, don’t use a word that you cannot describe because you don’t know what you mean.

“Or maybe you know exactly what you mean and you’re afraid to say what you mean, so let’s have that conversation.”

She urged people to tell her what they mean by the term woke and then she would discuss whether The Pact is woke or not. 

The actress continued: “Then I will introduce you to a family just like this one. So are you saying that they don’t exist when they clearly do? 

“Are you saying that they’re not allowed to exist? What do you mean by that?

“Let’s have a proper conversation. Don’t throw words around, willy-nilly, when you’re not afraid to say exactly what you mean.”

She fumed: “If you don’t know, please be quiet because you’re incredibly boring.”

Following Rakie’s comments, Victoria awkwardly concluded the interview by saying: “Absolutely. Rakie there telling us how it is.”

The interview sparked a huge reaction on Twitter, with Mikey Walsh commenting: “This should be the response to every commentator, Journalist and MP who’ve become far too comfortable throwing the term ‘woke’ into every one of their dog whistle opinions.” 

Marcus James Heslop added: “She destroyed that presenter to the point that she just gives up as she had no legitimate comeback. Handed with class by @RakieAyola.” 

Angela M penned: “Brilliant! It’s about time someone stood up to it. It p****d me off that [Keir] Starmer didn’t do this when he was asked last year. I think there are times when he needs new advisors when he faces questions like this.”

Allen Copsey said: “The question is horrible and deliberately asked to allow Ayola to give this great response. If there’s no question, there can be no response. The interviewer was right to ask that question, I’m sure Ayola was expecting it.”

BBC Breakfast airs daily on BBC One from 6am. 

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