Top Gear Shows Glimmer Of Hope In New Preview

Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY /

It has been a while since I have anything positive to say about Top Gear. The new preview and show date making me think they finally get it.

I was one of the few when Chris Evans was named the lead presenter of Top Gear that was excited. The announcing of Matt LeBlanc was also exciting for me as a dedicated Top Gear loyalist. I could not wait for the revamped show to air.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Clarkson, Hammond, and May. They made Top Gear the international hit that it was. I love The Grand Tour and sure hope we do not have to wait another nine months for new episodes. With that, I still wanted Top Gear to succeed. I want more great car shows, not less.

Then the first new episode of Top Gear aired and you could tell it was not going to work. From Evans audio issues in the studio to the horribly uncomfortable interviews, Top Gear was in trouble. It became quickly apparent that Top Gear just went on life support.

After the series ended, the firing of Evans did not take long. Then we all waited to see what else was going to be done to try and help the show regain its footing. The resigning of LeBlanc to be the lead presenter was met with lots of doubt. I am a huge LeBlanc fan, but even I am concerned about this decision.

After a seemingly long silence, Top Gear started sending out publicity shots. Nothing spectacular, just letting us know the show was still there. Then all of the sudden it seemed that Top Gear reruns stopped airing on BBC America. It was an ominous sign that the show, a staple of the channel, had in essence disappeared.

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A month ago a quick teaser was released by the BBC. The reaction was quick and unanimous, Top Gear is done. It seemed that they had totally lost any idea of what their audience wanted. Until then I still had hopes for the show to come back strong. That teaser though was the last straw, it was dead.

All of the sudden last week the BBC put the big push on for the new series. They released an extended preview of the show that actually was not bad. It seemed like the cast was, god forbid, having fun again. The adventures they previewed were classic Top Gear, exotic cars and putting the presenters in unfamiliar circumstances. There was even some natural clowning around that had been sorely missed.

Then one of the biggest shockers from the BBC came at the end. The show was moving to Sunday. Now that may not seem like much, but changing the air day actually gives it a new feel. It puts the show in a new spot, on the weekend where it cannot be compared to the Clarkson, Hammond, and may version. It is a stroke of brilliance that should give the remaining Top Gear fans hope.

I finally have some hope leading up to the March 12th premiere of Top Gear. It almost feels like a reboot for the grand old show. I think I may have come back around and got myself hopeful that the show can be entertaining again. We will see, but the truth is make or break this time around. If this series struggles again, that could be it for Top Gear.

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