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Toughest Place to be a Taxi Driver

Sun Mar 10, 9-10pm, BBC2

Every TV formula has its optimal point and this show is probably just nudging past its best. But as a humanised study of global inequality, a reminder of the strength of basic solidarity and a simple reality show challenge, ‘Toughest Place to be…’ still packs a punch. Tonight, London cabbie Mason McQueen is off to Mumbai to take on the city’s frankly insane traffic system. He’ll be staying with selfless and stoical Pradeep, a taxi driver who supports his late brother’s family in addition to his own.

Mason’s a big lad, but it turns out that squeezing himself into a Fiat Padmini is the least of his problems. There’s also the heat, the cows, the chaos, the sprawl, the smells and the pesky auto-rickshaws taking his fares. By the end, he’s bonded with his host, had a hint of the downside of the globalised economy’s rigged deck and well and truly counted his blessings. And you will too. Phil Harrison