Mike Brewer, the star of television’s Wheeler Dealers series, has opened up about the numerous death threats and ‘tirade of abuse’ he has received online.
Brewer, who is celebrating 20 years of Wheeler Dealers this year, explained in a Car Dealer Magazine video: “I’ve had death threats. Regularly, people threaten to rape my wife and daughter and murder me. People say they’re outside my house. I’ve actually had people at my gate.
“I wake up every day to a tirade of abuse. It happens every single day.”
Wheeler Dealers has now entered its 21st season, reaching 200 million-plus people worldwide. However, this success has been tempered by a lot of online hate.
“When you’ve got a global show that reaches more than 200m people, you’re gonna have a tiny percentage of those people take umbrage at the fact that you’re successful,’ said the 59-year-old.
“People take umbrage at that and get jealous of it. So they revert to social media and tell me what they think of me, and the abuse does hurt.
“It does affect me, and it affects my mental health. But fortunately, I’ve got a really strong family and a very strong, loving wife. And I’ve got a great team of people around me that know simply what you read online isn’t true.”
He added: “I struggle. Personally, I may drink a bit too much to try and numb the pain. And that manifests itself in weight. And then that manifests itself in people just being abusive and cruel about size online. But it’s a vicious circle. And unfortunately, this is the world we live in.”
The new season of Wheeler Dealers starts on Discovery Plus on Friday, October 6, and Brewer touched upon some of the early days of the hit series.
“When we started to make the first season of Wheeler Dealers, I always felt we were just making it up as we went along,” he explained.
“I was being offered Top Gear at the time, I’d just come off the back of Driven, as well as Deals on Wheels on Channel 4 and I really thought this would just be a bit of a stop gap in between.
“I knew that it had some kind of presence and legs then. And here I am, we’re just about to start the 21st season 20 years later and I’m still doing it. It’s incredible.”