“Tonight, on Top Gear, Tanner thrashes a Camaro SS, Adam is stuck in Eugene with a Chery, and Rutledge shows New York what real sophistication is all about, plus we put Brian Williams in our reasonably priced car.” That’s how Top Gear America should start. Instead they spend the beginning of each show trying to explain what Top Gear is. Why? Somehow millions around the world get what Top Gear is about without nary a word from Jeremy Clarkson that Top Gear is a show about cars, where you’ll learn nothing about recipes etc….
And that’s the crux, Top Gear is not about cars. It’s about fun, adventure, laughing, cringing, and occasionally watching Jezzer hoon a Bentley around so much he blows the tire right off of it or making a beach landing with the Royal Marines in a Ford Fiesta.
I personally like the guys on Top Gear America, or is it Top Gear USA, no matter because it’s simply not going to survive if it’s not quickly retooled, and I mean running re-runs for a few weeks and fixing the in-studio work. The segments of the show where the hosts and their guests are in cars and doing challenges are fine, really if we’re honest, pretty much as good as Top Gear UK, however the inside banter is not good. It’s stiff, uncomfortable and looks too rehearsed, which means it’s not rehearsed enough, the writing is horrible and the Director is doing an awful job. There I said it.
I want this show to survive. I cannot watch SpeedTV or whatever they’re calling it this week, and MotorWeek on PBS is equally horrible. We live in a wasteland of horrendous automotive oriented shows here in the States. This is why Top Gear UK is so popular. Heck, I love Fifth Gear for that matter and would gladly watch Vicky and Tiff on a weekly basis if given the opportunity.
I’m not going to go for much longer. This is simple. Bring Jeremy Clarkson to the States for a re-write of the in-studio stuff. Have him coach Adam, Rutledge and Tanner to get it right. My wife isn’t enthralled with the cast, but I think it can work. It just needs attention.
Finally, think about what you enjoy about Top Gear UK and what you hate about the garbage we get on US television in general, and relating to cars in particular. Leave some feedback below and let’s see if the TopGear America producers can wake up and fix this before we are destined to a life of bit torrenting Top Gear UK or waiting 6 months to see the show on BBCAmerica.