If you were between the ages of eight and 15 during the mid-2000s, you probably watched “Drake & Josh” on Nickelodeon.
It’s one of the funniest kid/teen Nickelodeon shows from that era, and something that still makes me laugh today if I see any reruns. The show starred real-life best friends Drake Bell and Josh Peck, who played two teenage boys who became step-brothers after their parents got married. A lot of the show’s humor came from their opposite personalities, mutual hatred over their conniving little sister, and the heartwarming brotherly bond that the pair develop over time.
Josh is still in the spotlight with his YouTube channel, while Drake seemed to fall off the map until he launched a music career in Mexico.
Drake & Josh Post Show
Since Drake & Josh wrapped in 2007, Josh has continued his acting career in various shows and movies but is mainly known for his YouTube channel, where he has over three million followers. He often works with popular vlogger David Dobrik and recently made a video with TikTok star Dixie D’Amelio.
In 2017, there were rumors that Drake and Josh were no longer friends, when Josh didn't invite Drake to his wedding. The two have since made up, and Drake often appears in some of Josh’s YouTube videos.
Drake has rebranded himself in the Mexican music scene as Drake Campana.
Drake’s post-show career has been very different than Josh’s. He had a few small acting roles and voiced Spiderman in The Ultimate Spiderman from 2012 to 2017. Though his music career seemed to take off when he was still on Drake & Josh, it dwindled when the show ended.
However, his music career has taken a new turn, and he’s rebranded himself in the Mexican music scene as Drake Campana.
Drake’s A…Mexican Pop Star?
He released his first bilingual song, “Fuego Lento,” in 2018 and released his first Spanish-language album, “Sesiones En Casa,” in October 2020 under the name Drake Campana (which is “bell” in Spanish — I had to Google it because my Spanish is terrible). I listened to it, and I’m not going to lie, I was surprised at how much I liked it.
To be fair, I thought it was going to be horrible because Drake Bell moving to Mexico to become a pop star sounds like a joke, so my expectations were incredibly low. It turns out that it’s not a joke at all. Drake even shared his new Mexican ID on Instagram last year, and the majority of his posts on both Instagram and Twitter are in Spanish.
Drake’s music career seems to be taking off in Mexico, leading many fans to believe he made the move because he knew he would be more popular there. However, this hasn’t stopped fans from wondering if he’s trying to escape something in the United States.
Does He Have Ulterior Motives?
Like many former child stars, Drake has faced some legal troubles trying to transition into a more mature career. He was charged with two DUI’s in 2010 and 2015, serving a day in jail for the second charge.
However, fans aren’t concerned about legal troubles relating to alcohol. His ex-girlfriend, Melissa Lingafelt (who goes by the stage name Jimi Ono), recently accused him of verbal and physical abuse in a TikTok video. She claimed that the verbal abuse was "the worst type of verbal abuse you could imagine," and claimed the physical abuse consisted of “hitting, throwing, everything.”
She continues, “The pinnacle of it, he dragged me down the stairs of our house in Los Feliz, my face hit every step on the way down. I have photos of this. I don’t even want to get into the underaged girls thing. I mean I will, but I’m scared.”
His ex-girlfriend, Melissa Lingafelt, recently accused him of verbal and physical abuse in a TikTok video.
In a few follow-up TikTok videos, Melissa posted screenshots from anonymous women who claimed that Drake raped them when they were underage. The videos can still be seen on her TikTok page.
These accusations are incredibly serious, especially the ones accusing him of raping underage girls. He responded to the allegations in a public statement, writing, "I never abused my ex-girlfriend or did so many of the other things Melissa falsely claimed on her TikTok video. As our relationship ended — more than a decade ago — we, unfortunately, both called each other terrible names, as often happens when couples are breaking up. But that is it."
He also said that he’s pursuing legal action against her and that her claims were a "misguided quest for more money or attention."
Not much has been reported on the story since the accusations first came out, but I do think these allegations add validity to the theory that he’s running away from something. I’m a firm believer that every accusation of sexual assault and abuse should be investigated, and this is no exception. Running to Mexico to avoid charges may seem like a cliché, but it's happened before.
From Josh becoming a YouTuber to Drake becoming a pop star in Mexico, it’s safe to say that they both took very different career paths after Drake & Josh ended in 2007. However, Drake’s newfound stardom in Mexico should not excuse him if he is guilty of the crimes he has been accused of. If he truly went to Mexico to take advantage of his audience there, kudos to him. However, it’s also important to note that it’s a serious crime if he made the move to avoid facing consequences for his alleged actions.