[01x01] September 29th, 2008

[01x01] September 29th, 2008


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Tranquillizer

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this is the second most discussed episode among Top gear, fifth gear and TGA. 500 replies.the only other episode to fetch more than 500 replies was 09x03 of Top Gear.
 

JPDyno

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has anybody else noticed the wierd GT-R interior?

that has to be some mistake made during the editing, because that surely isn't the GT-R interior, now is it?

24:32
This come up earlier in the thread,
Looks like BMW M3 Interior
 

darkday2

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I might as well throw my 2 cents in.

Pros: They have learned at least some of what works from TG UK. Rough around the edges yes but I see a diamond in there somewhere. I like the more technical discussion for a change.

Cons: Steve? (The kid) is god awful annoying at times. I think he's trying to hard to be hip with the younger crowd and "fit in" which just doesn't cut it in the car world IMO. I liked the other two presenters though. I also thought the maybach review was just pure stupidity. WTF? You make a big scene about getting to be in a expensive car and then wear a pair of headphones? Ugh.

Overall though I will most certainly be watching this again and it's nice to have something to tide me over until the real deal comes back on in november. If they learn from their mistakes in a series or two it will be a gem.
 

klankymen

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OK, so a few thoughts:

A) The Blond dude sucks, the guy with the mustache is cool.

B) show a friggin layout of the track. Remember back in the first TGUK episode? they explained the whole track, with all it's stupid corner lanes. And of course, as everyone has mentioned, exterior shots. I think the "bus stop" might be kinda cool, but it's hard to tell.

C) Porsche and Maybach reviews were too short / useless. It really shows that Clarkson is a long time motoring journalist, and knows a shitload of cars, and can compare any new car he tests to the others.
Watching the TG AUS episode, I had absolutely 0 desire to got out and buy a new Porsche.

D) Wow, 250 grand for a bog standard carrera S? Even allowing for the mentioned luxury tax, that's like 90 thousand pounds, or 112 thousand euros. You Aussies are really SOL.
 

neige

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The segments are interesting, the presenters have chemistry together but all in all they lack charisma. Definitely not Clarkson, May, Hammond. Even Fifth Gear presenters are far more charismatic than this. I can watch other shows hosted by May or Hammond but i cant imagine watching anything presented by these guys and not falling asleep. You can tell Cox is trying to be like Clarkson but it doesn't feel like he believes in his own Clarkson attitude. Kinda awkward really. I hope TG US wont be like this.
 

budgieishere

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I missed the screening (I was at work) and only watched it last night. I found it almost cringe worthy, not at all entertaining.

Firstly, Charlie Cox. I think he needs to learn not to yell everything. What makes that worse is his voice is horrid when he yells, and very very grating. The other two were ok, Warren less so that Steve.

It felt all over the place in parts, like there was no coherence or it was a clip show. The Maybach section was very poor - I mean why go to the trouble of hiring out this type of car, doing all the intro stuff on the empty Eastlink, and then sit in the back and talk about the gadgets? Sure in the UK version they sat in the back, but they talked about the ride and the space and the look of the car. Maybach headphones is a gimmicky item, but they shouldn't have been the focus like they were.

Also, the sand dune 'challenge'. It would've been nice to have a big of a reason why they were doing it, instead of just randomly driving around an area and timing it. I think they tried massively to try and make it entertaining but lost the point that it needs to be relevant. In the end they lost both.

I do hope this is just like a pilot, a rough rundown of a show that will improve. But TG Aus need to carve out their own niche and not just try and imitate. I understand the set, the titles, the Stig - those are probably in the license. What it felt like is a cheap ripoff with a tenth of the underlying knowledge.
 

steka

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Guys... don't forget that this show is designed for australians. TG UK is designed for the UK/Europe.

I rather like TG Australia, but I think they copied TG UK too much. I mean.. even the studio setting is the same.

Let's give those guys some months to really get going. For a first episode: GREAT.
They had some mega mountains to climb and I think they really managed quite well.
 
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Icedvovo

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Okay, I've watched it yet again, and aside from the presenters, I reckon I've worked out the major problem.

They have absolutely no budget and they're trying to fake it otherwise. (despite what they report.)

They are short of location cameras (two from the credits) which leaves them with not enough footage for the editors to work with (two again). And they have not enough people to do a proper job in the time.

They certainly haven't left the editors enough time to do a proper job. If you look at the segments that were crap it was all the track stuff, which would've been edited last (at least if I was prioritising workflow.) So the footage looked thrown together because it was, probably VERY last minute. Listen to the audio in Collosimo's lap, they haven't even built a proper audio track, the revs change with every edit. 4AM on RedBull stuff.

These production issues won't simply be fixed with time and experience like some suggest, they will get worse as the team gets tired. And as for claims the production team needs to find their feet. I'm sure they haven't got work-experience kids working on it. These are hopefully seasoned professionals who should be able to cut anything perfectly straight off the bat.

And another thing, can anyone tell if it was shot/broadcast in High Definition? Because it certainly doesn't look like it to me.

The whole thing smacks of shoestring, and there's only one way to fix that.
 
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Dirkgently

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My lasting impression was how rushed it felt. TGUK feels like a solid hour show, TGAus felt 30mins. They rushed from one segment to another, the interaction between the presenters felt heavily scripted, I was left with no understanding of either what they felt about the Porsche or the Mayback.

It may be his Style, but I think the opinions of Charlie can be put down to the lack of space given to any comments, it was say this, next segment, they need to relax.

But I think the ingredients are there. Glad they are doing the Ford V Holden thing now. Get that stupid, who cares, bit out of the way so they can get on with doing a proper car show.

P.S. Yes, a good look at the layout of the test track would be nice. They also should have probably put the Aussie Stig time on the board to give some benchmark to what a laptime was around there, or maybe Charlie's, or Steve's or both. See what these 'Celebrities' are aiming for.
 

Dirkgently

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I had friends in Tassie 2 weeks ago, that got held up for some Tasmania shooting for Top gear. If that was the Porsche stuff then they haven't had any real time.
 

bolly

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The Einstein Prize...

The Einstein Prize...

Okay, I've watched it yet again, and aside from the presenters, I reckon I've worked out the major problem.

They have absolutely no budget and they're trying to fake it otherwise. (despite what they report.)

They are short of location cameras (two from the credits) which leaves them with not enough footage for the editors to work with (two again). And they have not enough people to do a proper job in the time.

They certainly haven't left the editors enough time to do a proper job. If you look at the segments that were crap it was all the track stuff, which would've been edited last (at least if I was prioritising workflow.) So the footage looked thrown together because it was, probably VERY last minute. Listen to the audio in Collosimo's lap, they haven't even built a proper audio track, the revs change with every edit. 4AM on RedBull stuff.

These production issues won't simply be fixed with time and experience like some suggest, they will get worse as the team gets tired. And as for claims the production team needs to find their feet. I'm sure they haven't got work-experience kids working on it. These are hopefully seasoned professionals who should be able to cut anything perfectly straight off the bat.

And another thing, can anyone tell if it was shot/broadcast in High Definition? Because it certainly doesn't look like it to me.

The whole thing smacks of shoestring, and there's only one way to fix that.

The Einstein Prize goes to.... Icedvovo. I reckon he's right on the money. And there's no point in panning the editors, cameramen and crew for it either. I'd say they've worked their butts off and done the very best they can under tough circumstances. They're also probably bashing their heads against the wall in sheer frustration at not having the same resources to try and match the production values of TGUK.

As for the scripting! Just pass me a chainsaw and point me at the idiot who thought "Stiggy the Bush Kangaroo" was a funny line. Please. This is the 21st Century and we're no longer a bunch of convicts who decided to move to 'The Big Smoke'. Maybe you should treat your audience as though they have some brains. If you can't, go and make 'Gladiators' instead. Eeeck!

:cry:
 
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Tchutney

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This might be my first post, so g'day to all, time to stop trolling.
I think overall Aussie TG was good, but I was disappointed for many of the reasons already mentioned. Cox has an annoying manner on film and a voice that grates on the nerves.
They have carbon-copied UKTG and that's disappointing (the title sequence, there are even vehicles on plinths already on the set and we have no idea why they're there). They don't have the budget to properly copy UKTG so why try? It would have been better to focus on making a show with real character and build a fan-base, so that the money will come.
Warren is great and is the pick of the presenters. We need to see more of Steve's much-lauded driving because his onscreen manner is a bit too goofy. "Why don't we call him 'Stiggo'? 'Stiggsy'?" sheesh.
The track needed to be introduced as did the "bog-standard" car. I think the Proton's a good choice, certainly as funny as a Suzuki Liana.
The first season of 'new' UKTG was not the brilliant program we love so much now. Jason Dawes was awful, Hammond hadn't found his feet. Given time (and a few more bucks) Aussie TG could certainly improve.
The Shark cage moke was very funny, nicely done (edited to hell though, like the Maybach story).
The surf to snow thing was not bad, at least we got a bit of a sense of who the guys are, and how they interact. Cox flying off the top of the sand dune was entertaining, and despite the fact they let us figure out for ourselves basically which cars they'd chosen their appraisal of the relative merits of each was quite good (better than other Aussie car shows of yore).
Would have liked to have seen a lap in that Lambo, though.
 

Icedvovo

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It comes down to the Golden Rule of Production

Speed - Quality - Cost.

Pick any two...
 

bolly

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The Big Rush...

The Big Rush...

It comes down to the Golden Rule of Production

Speed - Quality - Cost.

Pick any two...

The other thing is, you might have the cars... and all the right gear to shoot them, but if you don't have TIME to do it properly (because time = money), then you end up with a very soggy biscuit indeed.

I think the show would have been much better if they'd dropped a couple of the filler stories and spent more time getting the main ones right.
 

pulse

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I agree on the whole with many of the disappointed viewers here. I didn't expect much of the show, but I did expect better than what was delivered.

The simple fact is that TGAU hasn't got any money. The Age had an article recently about it. SBS is allowed only 5 minutes of advertising in that hour. At the rate of $30,000 per ad slot, they can hope to recoup only $300,000.

http://www.theage.com.au/news/entertainment/tv--radio/reinventing-the-wheel/2008/09/23/1221935644983.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap4

Now, that's $300,000 (133,000GBP or $238,000USD) to pay for the Top Gear license, editors, director, camera crew, sound engineers, presenters, pay for use of the track, the 'hangar', pay the executives salary, the receptionist, the advertising staff, etc etc etc etc and try and make a profit (they are now a commercial station, after all).

TGUK costs multi-million pounds per episode. This show will never be able to compete at that level, and all the time in the world won't make any difference at all. They simply can't afford it.

That said, my opinions of the presenters were a little different to most. I didn't mind Charlie. I liked Warren .. but I f**king *HATED* Steve. He needs to calm down, he was like the energizer bunny on Red Bull after snorting a kilo of speed, grinning like a mad man and generally pissing me off.

I agree that the show felt laboured, like they were trying too hard, and were unnatural. Charlie's driving position shows it, he drives like an old man, elbows out, clutching at the top of the wheel. That stuff will improve with time.

The lack of cameras, the poor sound quality, etc.. those are all financial constraints. That won't improve at all.

For those who are too lazy to read The Age article, the following quote may be interesting

SBS has much riding on the success of the eight episodes of Top Gear Australia. While media reports that the network is investing $11million in the franchise appear overblown (television head Matt Campbell says it is "a ridiculous claim ... that's more than our annual drama budget"), a more realistic figure puts the cost at between $200,000 and $300,000 an episode.

But even at that price, SBS will struggle to cover its budget. It is understood that it sold the full inventory of advertising spots on Top Gear Australia at a commercially realistic rate of $30,000 a spot. With a cap of five minutes of advertising per hour, SBS can expect to recoup $300,000 per episode.
 

bolly

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Swings and Roundabouts

Swings and Roundabouts

I didn't mind Charlie. I liked Warren .. but I f**king *HATED* Steve. He needs to calm down, he was like the energizer bunny on Red Bull after snorting a kilo of speed, grinning like a mad man and generally pissing me off.
I reckon Steve would probably be a lot better if he wasn't trying to overcompensate for Charlie's complete lack of vibe. He comes across like a tryhard blowhard on mogadon. At least Steve has enthusiasm, even if it is a bit "gale force" in its delivery.

Oh? Did I remember to call you 'Son', or 'Sunshine' just to assert my superiority. Learned that from Charlie I did :mrgreen:
 

Icedvovo

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At the rate of $30,000 per ad slot, they can hope to recoup only $300,000.
I agree, and I hadn't read that article. It's all starting to make sense.

Having said that, where they could recoup back cost is from the Tail of The Rat. Merchandising items that hopefully provide a long, thin stream of revenue way after the show has aired. DVDs, Hats TShirts etc etc.

Sad to say but I would buy a "Stiggy The Bush Kangaroo" TShirt. ;)

Then there's licensing reruns to other markets. There's money to made there.

But all this revolves on them getting it right in the first place. Gulp.
 

Hidden_Hunter

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But I think the ingredients are there. Glad they are doing the Ford V Holden thing now. Get that stupid, who cares, bit out of the way so they can get on with doing a proper car show.
I'd rather see cars that are unlikely to ever appear on normal Top Gear than just see the same cars that they get on normal Top Gear 12 months later. You might not like locally built cars but i'm sure some of the demographic does
 
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