New Top Gear

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Homer
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Homer »

The second series of Grand Tour wasn't really up to the standard of the first. I don't know if Amazon cut the budget, they spent it on hot food, or it just suffered from all three presenters spending a stint in hospital.

Latest Top Gear is brilliant though, you can see where the money they have saved on overpaid presenters has gone.

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CitroJim
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by CitroJim »

Homer wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 06:01
Latest Top Gear is brilliant though, you can see where the money they have saved on overpaid presenters has gone.



Really? Facebook comments seem to suggest it's just yet another rehash of the same tired old formula...

And about as popular now as a dose of the clap...

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Mandrake
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Mandrake »

I'm in two minds about both shows, I watch both intermittently for particular episodes that might be of interest but not regularly like I did with original Top Gear.

I think my biggest problem with BOTH shows is that they're both still trying to be Top Gear instead of doing something a bit new.

On Top Gear they've just tried to slot three new presenters into the existing format, and force the silly antics and banter of Clarkson, Hammond and May onto the new presenters... and when Chris Evans was there it just did not work. It was a complete disaster.

Now that he is gone it works a lot better and I do like Matt and the two other hosts and think they have now developed a good comradery with that shouty ginger idiot removed... :twisted: Chris Harris does a decent job of actually trying to do motoring journalism which the original trio gave up on years ago for stunts and antics.

But it just doesn't feel quite right that they have basically "recast the leads" and tried to keep it the exact same show complete with forced feeling antics. They need to let the new hosts develop their own personalities and let the show evolve a bit instead of trying to copy what Clarkson etc did, as nobody is such a consumite buffoon as Clarkson. He can't be copied or mimicked any more than William Shatner's shatnerisims could be. :lol:

The Grand Tour is also trying to follow the exact same formula as Top Gear - they have the original presenters but not the rights to do anything they did in Top Gear! Their new test track is as mentioned a joke compared to the original, there's no Stig, they have thinly veiled attempts to do the same things as Top Gear but under new names that won't cause lawsuits such as "conversation corner" etc...

The original premise was that they would be based in a different country for every episode hence "the grand tour" but that was jettisoned in Season 2 probably for being too expensive! The tent "set" is based somewhere in the West Midlands (supposedly near Clarkson's house...) for every episode in Season 2 instead of moving country every episode as in Season 1. So why not just use a studio ?

The on set sections of the show are silly and so, so boring, and the two stars of the week that have to compete on the track is usually cringeworthy. They just don't "have it" any more like they did in classic top gear, and you can tell they're all tired and weary and showing their age! They feel like an aging rock band that has been wheeled onto the stage for one concert too many. The on location escapades are a mixed bag, some are quite good others not so much, but they feel exactly like old Top Gear, and what new Top Gear is trying to be now.

There's really nothing to tell apart Top Gear and the Grand Tour on the on location pieces, they just have different leads. If you like watching Clarkson you'll probably watch the grand tour, but if you liked the original top gear despite Clarkson you'll probably watch Top Gear.

Of the two I think the Grand Tour won't last perhaps beyond season 3 - they're getting old and tired and as presenters they just don't have the pulling power that Amazon might have thought they would. New Top Gear's presenters have found their rhythm now and as long as they start to evolve the show and keep it fresh I think it will do well.

I won't be a regular watcher of either show though, I'll just dip in now and then when there is nothing better to watch on TV!
Last edited by Mandrake on 06 Mar 2018, 10:15, edited 5 times in total.

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Stickyfinger
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Stickyfinger »

Extra Gear:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b ... -episode-2

@' 8.35
"new suspension system" "unbelievable" "soft on the straight but stiffens in the corners" ..........he even got the Magic Carpet ride tag-line in πŸ™‚

I have offered them a test drive for history's sake :)

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Mandrake
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Mandrake »

Stickyfinger wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 10:09
"soft on the straight but stiffens in the corners"

Hmm, where have we seen that before ? :wink:

Also sounds a bit like the Kinetic system that was used on the Xsara WRC rally car for many years, where the front rear cross linked roll bar rams make the car extremely stiff for roll movements but very soft for articulation movements.

Gibbo2286
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Gibbo2286 »

CitroJim wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 10:05
Homer wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 06:01
Latest Top Gear is brilliant though, you can see where the money they have saved on overpaid presenters has gone.



Really? Facebook comments seem to suggest it's just yet another rehash of the same tired old formula...

And about as popular now as a dose of the clap...


I'd agree with the Facebook comments Jim, I found it all a bit 'samey' tedious too.
Time to save the Beeb's money and do something more interesting with it.

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CitroJim
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by CitroJim »

Gibbo2286 wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 11:23
I'd agree with the Facebook comments Jim, I found it all a bit 'samey' tedious too.
Time to save the Beeb's money and do something more interesting with it.



Yes, it really is time they learned to stop trying to flog a dead horse...

Trouble is, imagination is seriously lacking these days :(

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Zelandeth
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Zelandeth »

I reckon that "new" TG could be a lot better if the presenters were given more freedom to do their own thing rather than being forced into the roles of the Three Stooges.

Harris I've followed on YouTube for years, and Leblanc is a major petrol head with acting background, so should be able to stand on his own two feet.

If there's anything I get from it, it feels like the producers need to loosen the reigns a bit and let the show find its own direction.

The stupid staging of 99.9999% of what goes on when they're out and about is what gets to me.

GT just needs to fade away I think...It never managed to hold my interest, I invariably wind up wanting to hurl things at Clarkson's head, and they keep wrecking cars I like.

Now I greatly enjoy several other shows that May's presented, and could happily listen to him ramble on about engineering history etc for hours. The Reassembler was one particularly good example. GT has had it's chance, it's failed to deliver anything new...time for things to move on.

Only bit that did really make me smile was when they had two famous drummers in for the celebrity bit - and they could clearly have done a better job of presenting the show than the terrible trio.

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CitroJim
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by CitroJim »

Zelandeth wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 12:46
The Reassembler was one particularly good example.


I generally like the stuff may does but the Reassembler did not do it for me... It actually put me to sleep very quickly... Great for amnesia sufferers maybe!

Part of the problem maybe was that the items he reassembled were familiar ones I'd done in the past many times.. One being a lawn mower and the other a record deck. I gave up on it afterwards...

One thing that struck me was how old and ill he looked in those episodes... Quite depressing really.. He seemed to be portraying a very old man whiling away the time in his garden shed whilst awaiting the call from above...

Or that's how it came across to me.

He was at his best when he did his toy stuff... I enjoyed those...

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Zelandeth
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Zelandeth »

Toy Stories were two really good series. I kind of kicked myself for not grabbing those off iPlayer when they were on as I'd quite like to go back and re-watch some of them. Did get a few of them, but forgot to go back for the rest.

The Reassembler I think did well for what it was - a show destined to be stuffed away somewhere on BBC 4 I think, made on a shoestring. I reckon the fact it was filmed in a shed with probably little in the way of fancy lighting had a lot to do with why he looked like death...I admit I did doze off once or twice with it on, though I don't generally count that as a bad thing!

I reckon with the right co-presenter, he could do a pretty convincing modern-day version of the Secret Life of Machines. ...In fact him and Tim Hunkin on the same show would probably work pretty well...

Secret Life of Machines by the way, is almost entirely responsible for my interest in engineering/lighting/electronics...

Now *that* show was a miracle of the art of making something with zero resources! I do have digital copies of all of those, albeit copies from VHS (Betamax actually I think) so not great quality.
CitroJim wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 13:03
Zelandeth wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 12:46
The Reassembler was one particularly good example.


I generally like the stuff may does but the Reassembler did not do it for me... It actually put me to sleep very quickly... Great for amnesia sufferers maybe!

Part of the problem maybe was that the items he reassembled were familiar ones I'd done in the past many times.. One being a lawn mower and the other a record deck. I gave up on it afterwards...

One thing that struck me was how old and ill he looked in those episodes... Quite depressing really.. He seemed to be portraying a very old man whiling away the time in his garden shed whilst awaiting the call from above...

Or that's how it came across to me.

He was at his best when he did his toy stuff... I enjoyed those...

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Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur »

I think I saw just one of the episodes of "The Reassembler", with the Kenwood Chef, he was very good.

Had a look to see if they were available online (a couple are Youtube) and found this brilliant little line in the course of a Grauniad write up on the show

β€œAdjustable spanners are the tool of the charlatan,” he declares, and he sounds so convinced you find yourself nodding in agreement."

...no of course I've never used an adjustable! :rofl2:

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Mandrake
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Mandrake »

CitroJim wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 13:03
I generally like the stuff may does but the Reassembler did not do it for me... It actually put me to sleep very quickly... Great for amnesia sufferers maybe!
Or insomnia sufferers perhaps ? Maybe, actually I can't remember if that's the right word... :rofl2:

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CitroJim
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by CitroJim »

Mandrake wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 14:21
CitroJim wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 13:03
I generally like the stuff may does but the Reassembler did not do it for me... It actually put me to sleep very quickly... Great for amnesia sufferers maybe!
Or insomnia sufferers perhaps ? Maybe, actually I can't remember if that's the right word... :rofl2:


:rofl2: :rofl2: :rofl2: I must have been asleep when I typed that Simon... I've forgotten now...
Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 14:16
I think I saw just one of the episodes of "The Reassembler", with the Kenwood Chef, he was very good.
Been there, done that... I have a vintage Kenwood Chef I use at least twice a week for cakes and kneading bread. It's pushing 50 years old and is the best mixer I've ever known..

It'll even do my heavy Christmas cakes and that, if you'll excuse the pun, is a stiff test of any mixer... The torque they put out is legendary and they're built like tanks...

What's even more wonderful is all the spares are still available...
Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 14:16
β€œAdjustable spanners are the tool of the charlatan,” he declares, and he sounds so convinced you find yourself nodding in agreement."

...no of course I've never used an adjustable! :rofl2:
He's not wrong of course but we'd all be lost without our adjustables... I'd call them, like Mole Grips, an essential in any well-appointed toolbox...

You just need to know their limits...
Zelandeth wrote: ↑
06 Mar 2018, 13:16
I reckon with the right co-presenter, he could do a pretty convincing modern-day version of the Secret Life of Machines.
That programme must have totally passed me by... Until now I've never even heard of it... Or the other bloke you mention...

I suppose that's what comes of watching perhaps about an hour of telly a month... And being asleep for most of it :twisted:

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Zelandeth
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by Zelandeth »

I'll bring a USB stick over with me next time I'm over there then Jim.

Secret Life of Machines was produced for Channel 4 in the late 80s to early 90s presented by Tim Hunkin and Rex Garrod. It basically demystified several household devices - but did a REALLY good job of it. The production budget stretched about as far as the film used in the cameras and some coffee...that was it. Even the opening credits were animated by hand by the presenter! Health and safety? Not a bit of it!

It just managed to hit that magic spot of "simple enough for the common man to understand" but "in depth enough to actually be useful."

The episode on the electric light was what started the lighting interest for me.

Best part for me was that I stumbled across his website a few years ago, and pinged an email over just to say "thanks" for having been such an inspiration for what turned out to be a long-standing hobby. He actually replied to it as well.

The subjects covered were...

Series 1:
The Vacuum cleaner
The Sewing machine
Central heating
The Washing machine
The Refrigerator
The Television

Series 2:
The Car
The Internal combustion engine
The Quartz watch
The Telephone
Radio
The Video recorder

Series 3:
The Fax machine
The lift/elevator
The Word processor
Electric light
The Photocopier
The office.

Edit: I'm about to head out to grab something from Toolstation, and I have SLoM on an SD card. If you're not in Jim, expect an SD card to be waiting for you when you get home.

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CitroJim
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Re: New Top Gear

Post by CitroJim »

Zel, thanks so much for those :D The Secret Life of Machines is absolutely magical :)

I am so going to enjoy those episodes!

I shall redouble my efforts to dig out that switch... Goodness knows where it's hiding :roll: