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[17x07] December 28th, 2011 [India Special]

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    The specials are always more about entertainment value than the cars anyway, and this one definitely was entertaining. 8.


      I was entertained.

      It wasn't the best special ever but also not the total failure many want it to be here.

      I've been wondering, if the harsh critics have something to do with the theme of the episode... many British tend to react a bit pissed, when you point out their country's flaws to them. And it happening with India, which used to be a British colony and part of the glorified empire, must feel somewhat embarrassing for some proud Brits...

      Don't crucify me, just thinking loudly
      Last edited by MacGuffin; December 29th, 2011, 1:27 AM.
      “If Liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear" (George Orwell)


        I laughed, I were amuzed (might have something to do with having a few glasses of whisky, christ, I've got to write a story for tomorrows paper, I'm bloody screwed), so I'm not really complaining. For me, this was a genuine 9/10 because I laughed a lot and felt the love the guys usually show for any place they visit (apart from France and America).

        I'm a complex Top Gear connoisseur. I love old Top Gear, early bits with Jezza/Hammond/May, when they were doing proper road tests. I don't really pay much attention to power laps or super car reviews, I always laugh of the challenges though. Even Ground Force.

        The thing is, old Top Gear is a bit like a Laphroaig Quarter Cask. Rough in the edges, but with amazing texture. New Top Gear is more like a 12 year old Tullamore. It's softer, less textured, but amazingly smooth. I enjoy both.

        I see Andy Wilman has opened five or six accounts tonight, though!
        "If you're not getting the picture you want, you're not close enough" - Robert Capa
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        - David Bailey! Who's he?!
        I am one of "the two most level headed and pragmatic regular posters on the politics forum" according to anonymous sources.
        Bustin' chops since the late 80s


          I think the whole hype built before it being aired is the reason why most of the people here are so disappointed.

          I have to say, though, I'm a bit disappointed, as well. I thought it'd be a big ol' dangerous ride through Hell, from what we hear about Indian roads - or what I hear, anyway. And, well, it was dangerous, but not THAT dangerous most of the time.

          And, who thought their British cars'd be so reliable so far away from home?

          In the end, however, it deserved a 7/10 from me. I liked the pranks, especially when James decided to get his revenge on Jezza and Hammo - funny that Clarkson, the self-proclaimed least practical man in the world, can actually be very practical when it comes to pranks -, the Straight-Six Cricket game really was awesome, and the hanging-a-banner-on-the-outside-of-a-moving-train-thingy was very good. But the rest, well... You know.

          This premise really didn't work. When it was about getting from one side of a country to another, with challenges along the way, things really worked quite well. But this sort of "format", if that's the proper word, didn't quite work.

          And, to finish this, I'm kinda ready for another short series. The guys have other side-projects, which gives them less time for Top Gear. I think it'd be a sort of miracle if the 18th series'll have more than 7 episodes.


            I was really looking forward to this special because I am from India, but I have to say I am a bit disappointed.
            There was so much they could have done in India but all they did was their usual gags. It would have been interesting if they did the journey from Bombay to Jaipur by car instead of the train.
            Also, driving in India is not as bad as they said. You get a hang of it in a very short time. It is as James correctly mentioned, freestyle.

            Anyways, my next holiday, I am definitely going to drive to the place where they left those cars..
            Would have been a 6 but will be a solid 8 from me because it gave me an exciting thing to do.


              I am sorry, but this episode is not getting much more than a 4 from me. Even as a great Top Gear fan, i don't like them mainly recycling old jokes and cars that have been used in the show previously (the rude statements on the train -> 24h Britcar Race, the Rolls-Royce -> Season 11, Episode 5, just to name 2 examples).
              I do really hope that the season's episodes are better than what they have shown in this special.


                Oh crap. I wrote a large review and something went wrong and it's GONE. Just as well, really, as I was getting a bit wordy. I shall take this as a sign. (Er, actually, I didn't. I banged on a little)

                I laughed, I smiled, I was entertained for the whole 90minutes. What more can I ask for? Nothing. This is what I want, what I wait patiently for. I'm very satisfied, but I think that I'm a different kind of TG fan, one that will take anything they offer me and cling to it and never let it go. Not all fans are like me. That's perfectly fine. But it does make me sad to see such negative reviews

                Yeah, it wasn't one of my favourite specials. Those are Africa, Bolivia, Vietnam... So what, though? I'll be watching it again (and again, et al), there is no doubt about that. Skylock had a point though. I would have liked to have seen more cultural interaction, like the guy with the snake. I did really enjoy the straight 6 cricket and interacting with the locals. On these long trips, it's very much about their surroundings as well as the cars they choose to complete the journey in.

                As for the scripted parts, well, of course it's scripted. I say again, so what? There are moments that I didn't pick up on, probably because I was too busy smiling and being in love with my television for the entire time. I didn't see the ripped banners coming. I didn't see the broken mini coming. I saw the water fight with the hose coming, and also the party canopy fiasco. So what if I did, it didn't ruin my enjoyment!

                Someone commented the boys should retire and be replaced with three others. You've got to be joking. James, Jeremy and Richard ARE Top Gear. End of. They might be aging, but that is normal. Doesn't mean they should be put to pasture. Perhaps their "age" reflected the slightly subdued nature of this special. I felt their friendship shone through and was very evident, which was lovely.

                Thank you to everyone involved in this production. Also, Hammond's hair drenched in hair product was fantastic HA!

                Quick question: the brown bum bag around Richard's waist, which is not usually seen. What did it contain? Mic equipment? Edit: Pic added. I'm weird and I'd like to know, is all.

                Last edited by aaurora; December 29th, 2011, 3:17 AM.

                I object to the beige


                  I gave it a 7. It's only my opinion, but this show peaked with Series 12 and the Specials peaked with Vietnam. I honestly just feel embarrassed at their cocking about more and more. Sure, I'm still there every week because there are always gems, but...


                    Could have been better. The "challenges" were stupid, esp the first one. Silly, but hey, with that many people there, not much space to do much. Lol.
                    I still hold, that the Vietnam Special was the best one so far. I hope the new series is well done and with 8 shows or more, not 6.
                    Top Gear is still the best show.


                      Oh dear. I am not even done watching and just... oh dear.
                      This isn't just me being picky and one those people. I wasn't bothered by the scripting for a few seasons past a lot of people and even got a couple laughs out of ground force even, because at least then it wasn't the same old tired jokes being scripted in. It's not very fun to watch when you know exactly how every challenge is going to end....
                      Originally Posted by captain_70s

                      Katwalk - Draining the world of happy since 1989
                      I am usually off on the tumblrs now (there is a separate blog for whining and that is not it)


                        Just finished watching it. I'd read the various reviews here beforehand, so I was a tad, well, terrified of what I was about to watch.

                        It's right, what they shouldn't pay attention to reviews.

                        I'm firmly in the "Not the best of Top Gear, but still more entertaining than most of the crap on TV today" camp. Definitely not as enjoyable as most of the previous Christmas specials, but there were some definite LOL moments - some of the car pranks were funny (Richard's reaction when Jeremy started playing the Genesis song from last year's special was a definite hearty laughter moment). And the bit when they were sitting around the campfire either was unscripted or one of the better written segments.

                        I was entertained, and I will most likely watch this again. And that's all I ask of a tv program.


                          I was entertained, but overall it felt predictable. I could see the gags coming from a mile away, like during the hillclimb it was a given that Jeremy would go way too fast, and when they had to go up that hill offroad it was a given that James wouldn't make it and the Mini would be ruined.

                          I loved the Jag cricket, though, not to mention the scenery was breathtaking. There were moments of idiotic predictability, but then there were moments of genuine brilliance, so it all averaged out for me at a (somewhat generous) 8/10.
                          In the beginning the Universe was created.
                          This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.


                            Due to the flood of Top Gear Bots that usually happens here at a time like this, I was afraid that I'd be the only one expressing any negative opinions about this. Glad to see that a lot of people feel the same way about this that I do: a complete, utter waste of time. There's only so much Stupid that you can cram into an episode, and they vastly exceeded that amount here. It didn't reach the same level of pain as, say, a Season 13 or 14 episode, but that's praising with faint damn.

                            They've done better. They know how to do better. So why can't they?
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                              should have been a lot better.


                                So...they finally do an India they go to Bombay and then Delhi(totally missed S. India but hey.)

                                As a TG special, its direction isn't the best. But its a special...supposed to be funny and scripted...
                                Naan/Trouser press, fantastic. All the funnies they did in the cities were typical TG and was quite enjoyable.

                                To all the people who are stunned by the roads in India: Its true...I am so glad that they showed this. India may be the largest democracy, but NO ONE there understands car discipline. Ive been there plenty of times and the roads are so retarded. My own relatives in India drive like this and unless they dont drive like this, they will usually end up like what happened to Clarkson in Delhi and in the truck scene with the wheel.


                                  I'm a bit on the fence here with this one.

                                  I think there was too much "white space". Condensing it to 60 minutes would have made it feel like there was more going on.

                                  Screwing with eachothers cars: Typical, we expect it but even that felt forced.

                                  The banners on the train: gave me a good chuckle. That sort of stuff has to be scripted and planned out, but it's still funny.

                                  The presenters didn't seem to "be at home". Dare I say that the chemistry between them that we've seen in other episodes wasn't there? When Jeremy and Richard went for lunch while James was waiting at the train station felt awkward and forced. Maybe if they were actually having lunch and not just acting out a lunch scene it would have been better. The Vietnam special had them sitting around drinking snake vodka - that worked well.

                                  The Vietnam special really showed viewers what the country was like - there seemed to be a lack of that in this episode.



                                    Not their best work, but I was entertained.
                                    97 Ford Mustang GT



                                      Certainly less entertaining than the other specials they've had but I found it to be quite good.

                                      However the one thing I wish they hadn't of done was tie in the whole "save the economy" bullshit. Three cheap cars, a roadtrip across a big country with the usual gags and TG comedy thrown in with a bit of peril and dangerous-ness is what I loved about the other specials but this didn't have that sort of feel to it.

                                      "If it's a Lukey."


                                        I enjoyed this more than Top Ground Gear Force ...... just.


                                          I didn't think it was boring but I definitely didn't think it lived up to the previous specials. As said earlier, the cars never broke down and there wasn't anything genuine happening. I thought they should have expanded on parts such as the snake, and I quite liked their little camp fire chat. Overall, I thought that India could have been a lot funnier than they made it.