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Episode 4 seemed good and bad to extremes.

I thought the truck segment was actually fairly well done, very 'american' but in a good way.
The other two segments were meh, with the paintball section being absolutely horrible.
I wonder if they were constrained by budget to go with their original ideas for an episode no matter how they turned out, instead of realizing something that looked good originally on paper turned out to not work when shot.
 

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Just watched episode 3, and am finding the show very flat.

The interactions between the hosts would not be so bad if the hosts had more on-screen character......even the drifter's good-bye at the end of the show was borderline insulting.
 

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I find the US show horrible - the UK hosts must be cringing when they see the American version.

I've been watching Top Gear for years including the Australian and the short-lived Russian one. The American version is by far the worst.

I like Tanner -I think he's the best of the three hosts and most polished in presentation. The other two are complete idiots and there is zero chemistry between any of them.

Maybe my view wouldn't be as jaded if I hadn't ever seen the UK version. Everything on the US one -including the endless 'Clarkson-esque' analogies -seems like a forced, but ultimately failed, attempt at recreating the UK charm, wit and creativity.

I'll keep watching because I do enjoy the cars but I seriously doubt Top Gear USA will be around for long - at least not in its current form.
 

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i been watching via historychannel website. it like the show... having not watched much of the uk version.. And because im familiar with tanner from doing battle of the super cars with my favorite driver Paul Tracy!

If i could have re casted this show i would have picked. Tommy Kendal,Derrick Daly(for the accent) and Paul Tracy..
 

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I'm enjoying it. I went in with VERY low expectations. I have been pleasantly surprised. The cinematogaphy is good, the writing is decent, and there is a good mix of cars. Tanner and Rutlege are good. Too bad that they couldn't get Adam Corolla for the third guy.

My wife is betting on Paul Tracy being The Stig. He's not racing these days, and he is connected with Tanner from their previous show...
 

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@paultracy3
paul tracy
Who is that stig , he cannot reveal himself , I hear it's in the contract ...
 

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I haven't seen the US version but it can't be much worse than the one the UK now gets. The old UK Top Gear was great but around the late 90s it turned into a comedy show. Since moving to Canada the only episodes I've seen have been on BBC Canada and it is even more of a comedy/entertainment show now with even a live audience (drunk?) cheering on the long overexposed Clarkson. However, he is probably right about Americans not getting it. They have focus groups for everything in the US leading to ever more homogenisation.
 

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To be anything as good as Top Gear UK, it has to have entertaining hosts, that happen to know about cars. Getting any former NASCAR driver and putting him in front of a camera just isn't going to cut it.

First comes to mind is Jay Leno, but good luck ripping him away from NBC's Tonight Show, especially with all of the pains they went through this past year.

Then comes Tim Allen, great guy, funny and knows about cars. I can't think of any other American entertainer right now that can fill the boots of Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May.
 

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What sets apart Top Gear UK from its less interesting spinoffs is that they are not affraid of offending people. They seem to thrive on insulting ecologists, bus drivers, the Morris Marina owners club, the Transportation Minister, american cars, etc...

With no advertisers, the BBC version can afford controversy. The Top Gear USA hosts would never dare to joke that lorry drivers spend their time murdering prostitutes. They would lose their jobs the very next day.

Jeremy Clarkson is the central piece of Top Gear's success. It was quite apparent after watching Top Gear: Apocalypse, a DVD special animated by Richard Hammond and James May. It was dull and lifeless and Clarkson's absence was glaring. Jeremy Clarkson is to Top Gear what Simon Cowell is to American Idol.
 

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01 Boxer, it's Murder AND Prostitutes! Not murdering prostitutes. :)

I find Clarkson to be a bit much when he's all by himself in one of his DVD specials. I much prefer the trio work together as a team than one or two on their own. It's that chemistry between all of them that makes the UK show work so well, a chemistry that is severely lacking in the US version, which is one of the reasons why I stopped watching that show altogether.

On the subject of the Canadian version of Top Gear that I'm planning to produce, I will change things a bit because I do feel that the UK version is becoming just a bit too staged and silly, a phenomenon which is also happening in the international versions of Top Gear. I actually prefer the older UK episodes where the challenges were more down-to-earth but still highly entertaining such as the £100 used car challenge (best win ever) and the supercars for less than a used Mondeo. Just seeing the engine of Clarkson's used Ferrari disintegrate and spew metal bits all over the road was a spectacular failure on its own! And it wasn't staged! It just happened!
 

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I had to google the exact quote:
Climbing behind the wheel, Clarkson mused: "What matters to lorry drivers? Murdering prostitutes? Fuel economy?"

He went on: "This is a hard job, and I'm not just saying this to win favour with lorry drivers. It's a hard job - change gear, change gear, change gear, check your mirrors, murder a prostitute, change gear, change gear, murder. That's a lot of effort in a day."
I agree that Top Gear is at its best when Hammond and May are there to balance out Clarkson's enormous ego. It's not necessary for the US version because the presenters have no personnality whatsoever.
 

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Jay Leno was mentioned earlier in this discussion about Top Gear USA.

He wrote an article back in March 2008 for The [UK] Times Online:

I hope we don’t ruin Top Gear

Like everyone in Britain I have long been a huge fan of the television show Top Gear, although we get it only sporadically here in America. You can find it on BBC America and occasionally it pops up at odd times on other cable channels. There have been rumours circulating that the show would eventually come to America. I hoped it would come with Jeremy Clarkson and the gang, but NBC seems to have bought the show and I got a call one day asking if I would be interested in being a part of it.
 

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Yes, Top Gear USA might have worked well with Jay Leno, Tim Allen and Jerry Seinfeld hosting - the latter being a huge car collector as well, particularly Porsches as I understand.

How much could that talent really have cost? :)
 

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Just watched episode 4. The bit about the Raptor was OK, but the race was inane.

I think I have figured out why this show sucks dead bunnies - they are taking themselves far too seriously! Maybe they really are not, but they sound like they are.

That is a major difference with the BBC's version - and is a common theme in most British comedies. They know they are making something unrealistic and they treat is as such. The commentaries, the characters, everything is a bit over the top because they are doing it for fun. The US version acts as though the staged events are true competitions! Duh!!!!

Those who think the BBS's Top Gear has degenerated into a staged comedy may be right, to some extent, but that is what makes it work. The US - just as Clarkson predicted! - just does not get it. Unfortunately, that "does not get it" seems to start with the producers and writers......
 

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Just watching episode 5, and just noticed - they have a lot of good rock music, but it is often British rock!

Even in this episode, the first song is Layla from Eric Clapton.

There is so much great American rock, much of it from Detroit, yet they use British rock? Talk about a first class screw up when selling a show that focuses on Detroit iron to the US public!!

Also - I noticed again that they take these challenges and stuff as if they mean something! That is the major difference from the BBC version - Clarkson et al know they are doing entertainment, not a car show, and treat it as such.
 

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Well I just sat and watched all 6 episodes and after a very shaky start it is growing on me.

The segment on bringing back a classic GM car was funny and relativly informative, the Fiero looked like a great attempt at a Sports Car, I never knew that GM had to recall ALL of them for a problem.....

The segment where they filled the cars with water, was again a direct rip off of the UK show, maybe that is the plan, just use the same stunts.....

All in all, getting a little better each episode, just hope it continues to improve.
 

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OK, so now that season 2 has begun on History Channel in the US, this topic begins anew! Anybody heard word on the Canadian Season 2 premiere?
 
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