By Greg Dawson
Hometown has yet again been able to show it can produce a gripping documentary, picking up the pace as these latest episodes do not hold back, landing punch after punch of new shocking interviews and information. Hometown has expanded its narrative into the West Yorkshire drug trade while also following the ongoing investigation into police conduct. Azhar draws parallels between Yassar and other kids that are pulled into drug peddling for other dealers, unearthing why children would turn to running drugs and how this affects their family and the wider community.
Episodes 3 and 4 raised the bar above last weeks episodes, presenting a complex case and wider subject as well structured narrative that guides viewers through a criminal underbelly of West Yorkshire that most have rarely seen or interacted with. On the flipside, the show does showcase the tight-knit family that is the Muslim community and how they are trying to support the younger generation and keep them away from crime. Azhar interviews members of every angle of the story, both those affected, those who cause it and those who try to prevent the drug trade; making for some powerful interviews. Talking to an ex-drug dealer, who works to keep kids off the street from Bradford, he gave a unique insight into how he went from being groomed by gang members to becoming the groomer with younger children working for him. In contrast, Azhar visits an active gun-related incident that occurred during filming, speaking to scared locals who live where the gunman is active, gaining fresh, in the moment perspectives from Huddersfield’s locals.
As an investigative piece, the documentary expertly shows both sides of the story even showing the horrible conditions heroin users live in and compare it to the high flying lives of drug kingpins. It doesn’t shy away from harsh realities and Azhar’s partially removed view of West Yorkshire make him the perfect narrator for the documentary, remaining impartial and being able to step back from his hometown and community to see the bigger picture.
This show has whipped up a storm of controversy in West Yorkshire upon its release. If you are interested in the controversy search for the show on Twitter and you will see countless options and speculation on not just Yassar’s death but the personal life of the Mobeen and ulterior motives of the documentary. I would advise you to make your own opinion after watching this series and look into the current coverage of the ongoing investigation, which is due to release a report on the NCAs actions during the killing of Yassar. Stay tuned.
KLTV REVIEW | Hometown Episode 3-4
By Greg Dawson