Top Gear: shifting down

I’m a Top Gear fan. Sometimes I hate it, namely when the presenters have views that differ from my own. Other times, I’ll quote one of them to prove a point, e.g., “Clarkson said the riding Citroen C6 over potholes is like driving over silk, so that makes it the most comfortable car in the world,” as if they’re the ultimate authority in all things car-related.

Sadly, their tenure as a solid, entertaining car show is definitely coming to an end. The last episode was so awful I only finished watching it today (albeit, the news bit was excellent this week, I laughed my arse off). They actually thought someone in the world would be convinced that they were asked to direct a chase scene from the upcoming Sweeney film, and the proceeded to portray Hammond and Clarkson carrying out the most retarded gimmicks screened since the show began airing.

Yes, there’s a lot of faking in this show. The caravan fire in Episode 6 of Series 8 was obviously staged. Hammond suddenly running up to Clarkson to “say something” in the South American Special was scripted so Hammond’s jeep would roll down a sandy hill without him in it. But the fake stuff in this episode is just too pathetic. Hammond isn’t as mentally challenged as to concoct the stuff with the car jump and the actors and the caravan explosion. Clarkson isn’t such a moron as to suppose talking about traction control has a place in a car chase. A director isn’t going to take half the s**t this one took, etc… I shouldn’t need to spell it out if you’ve watched the episode. But this way, The Sweeney got some free publicity, Clarkson & Co. circumvented the BBC’s “no plug-in” policy, and the show got an extra 20 or so minutes of footage without having to use much brain-power. Everyone comes away happy… except for the viewers.

In a nutshell, this was embarrassing to watch. Guys, stick to cheap car challenges and bickering with each other. That’s entertaining, as opposed as you lot trying to act. Ah well, it’s not like I’ll stop watching Top Gear, though I suspect other people might, especially if you keep up this “stage & fake” formula.


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