Credit: Toon Talk

I recently caught up with local Youtuber James Raine to discus his show Rainey’s Toon Talk. The Audience numbers for the show are growing rapidly with some top quality content week in week out. James is a season ticket holder and had the idea to start the show in the first Covid Lockdown.

James began by saying “Lockdown came and hit us in many different ways! A lot of people rely on Football as an escape from life! to relax, meet friends and support the teams we love. Some people live for Saturdays! meet friends before the game, watch the match and socialise after the game and discuss the events of the game. So I thought lets give the fans a platform to come together, talk to other supporters and to help escape the mental health issues involved around Lockdown”.

He is grateful and humble in how quickly the show has grown. On one occasion, Shay Given and Warren Barton re-tweeted the link for the show and hit a staggering 500 members in a week.

James added that the members have there own opinions and that’s what he loves about football. Nobody would get jumped on for giving their thoughts in the group. The group has a great friendly vibe and then came the YouTube channel on the back of the original set up.

Raine spends a lot of time working on his Facebook page and channel alongside his family commitments.

He also runs a Sunday League side, although he is set to leave at the end of April.

Rainey’s Toon Talk is where James’s passion really comes to the forefront dedicating his time to research and putting shows together. James’ commitment to his channel shows, as it runs with a good flow of conversation along with well humoured banter. He is always working on the next thing for the show and how to improve its already popular shows.

I asked James about how important it was it to get a good balance regarding guests on the show:

“Not everyone is cut out for live shows. You have to have something about you, not just a one word reply. We have around 5-6 guests who have become good mates now”.

James’s future plans are to hit the 1k subscribers so he can give something back to the Rainey’s Toon Talk members.

Any financial benefits which are to be made from the show would be put back into the show to fund for prize giveaways.

Raine added “We would love to get more live shows with former players lined up”.

YouTube was a daunting prospect for Raine at the beginning, due to struggling with various confidences and talking to quickly which on a personal note helped him grow in confidence.

James spoke about his love of Newcastle United and I asked what was the moment that he decided this was his club.


“I always watched Newcastle United on TV with my Grandad and often watched the club train in Durham and Chester Le Street. I never had the opportunity to go to games until I was older “.

“My first game was in the Champions League against Italian side Inter Milan and walking into St James Park under the floodlight’s is a night I wont ever forget.”

Raine’s son Parker has recently completed 3 laps of St James Park to raise money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

He added “I am very proud of Parker who actually came up with the idea. We want to help a Toon related charity each season through the group”.

Even new owner Amanda Staveley contacted Parker about his achievement, which James said was a very proud moment.


Stephen Hopper

Content writer for Radio Gateshead. Freelance Football Writer, Former matchday reporter at Durham City AFC & Newcastle Blue Star, player interviews.