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Thread: Top Gear USA is back from the dead and headed to BBC America

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    MUGEN02's Avatar
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    Top Gear USA is back from the dead and headed to BBC America

    Top Gear is getting another makeover with an American audience in mind — this time, at the same network that airs the British original.
    BBC America has ordered an eight-episode season of Top Gear America. Set to debut later in 2017, it will join the U.K. version of the car-centric talk show (and its revamped presenter lineup) on the anglophile-friendly lineup. On board for hosting this iteration are actor William Fichtner (Prison Break, The Dark Knight, Armageddon), champion drag racer Antron Brown and British car journalist Tom “Wookie” Ford. The order is very much in line with BBC America's strategy of putting a personal stamp on British pop culture.
    "We are big fans of the mix of cars, credibility and charisma that adds up to the winning formula for Top Gear, and couldn't be happier that BBCA is now the home for the franchise in the US, with Top Gear America joining the original show on our network," said network president and GM Sarah Barnett. "Bill, Antron and Wookie are serious gear heads who never take themselves too seriously. It will be quite the trip."
    This is the third stateside version of Top Gear. History enjoyed moderate success with one, which ended its six-season run in 2016. Prior to that, NBC ordered a high-profile broadcast stab in 2008 before ultimately nixing plans.
    Like the History version, BBC America's take will again be produced by U.K. distributor (and BBC America corporate parent) BBC Worldwide. (The company has a majority stake in the network, though co-parent AMC Networks has the most creative involvement in operations.)
    Top Gear has existed as a TV property since 1977, but is perhaps best known for the incredibly popular 21st Century run hosted by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May. After achieving near-global ubiquity for their blend of interviews, field pieces and automotive test runs, the trio disbanded (and ultimately reteamed for an Amazon show) after Clarkson's contract was not renewed following allegations of verbal and physical abuse against a producer. The 2016 revamping hit another obstacle when primary host Chris Evans quit after just one season.

    Barnett discussed the obstacles of the evolving U.K. version when she recently spoke with The Hollywood Reporter. "The previous team really built the audience, and it's in a period of reinvention," she said. "Things don't happen overnight. I think that the [new] presenters are really talented and developing their chemistry. But it's tough when you have that level of scrutiny that the show had last season. Nothing can withstand that."

    Speed bumps aside, the automotive talk format remains one of the most enticing across the globe. And the original remains popular for stateside broadcaster BBC America. The 24th season of the original, which currently stars Matt LeBlanc, Chris Harris and Rory Reid, premiered earlier in March and is already outpacing the previous season in linear ratings. It airs Sunday nights.
    As for the new hosts, Fichtner is both a car enthusiast and a competitive racer — though not like Brown, a three-time NHRA Top Fuel Division world champion. Ford is the test editor of CAR and has previously appeared in BBC America series Mud, Sweat and Gears.
    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/liv...version-987149

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    Rex Luther's Avatar
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    I was joking the other day with another movie nerd mate about how William Fichner seems to be contractually obligated to appear in absolutely everything.
    Now I'm convinced this is the case.
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    Well I hope it's good, but I wouldn't have complained if they did another season with the previous US presenters.

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    Well from what I have read elsewhere, they are not just changing the presenters but rebooting the format to the UK version i.e. studio, track, star guest etc so time will tell how well that works.

    In my view, the old TGA only started to appeal once they went their own way and allowed chemistry to develop naturally.

    As an aside, I read that the old hosts only found out they weren't involved via the press release announcing the new show if true

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bunglejph View Post

    As an aside, I read that the old hosts only found out they weren't involved via the press release announcing the new show if true
    Maybe they could go to Amazon , they seem to like ex Top Gear presenters....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bunglejph View Post
    Well from what I have read elsewhere, they are not just changing the presenters but rebooting the format to the UK version i.e. studio, track, star guest etc so time will tell how well that works.
    So they are going to do what they did the for the first season of TGUSA, track/hanger/guest, same format, and that lasted one season, so it will be interesting to see if the format will work again with the new trio.

    On a side note, I know who the actor is, the other two blokes, I have no idea who they are, but I here the Ford guy is really popular, so I guess that is plus
    Last edited by jws926; March 22nd, 2017 at 2:07 AM.

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    If they have commercial breaks (they will), it will flop. It's why I avoided watching TGUK or TGUSA at the beginning. Ad breaks suck and ruin the flow. It's been talked about so many times and people at the BBC should be fully aware of it.
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    That's a shame. The previous TGUSA threesome had found a groove and really worked together as a team. Seems a big step backwards not to use them. Hopefully they will be offered their own show somewhere else?

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    Just a few months after being announced, Top Gear America is ready for the airwaves. The new series launches on July 30 at 8 pm Eastern time on BBC America. And just as a reminder, this is a completely new show, unrelated to the previous Top Gear USA on History Channel.

    BBC America released a new trailer of the show to preview various antics from the show's hosts; British auto journalist Tom "Wookie" Ford, Top Fuel drag racer Antron Brown, and actor William Fichtner. The trailer is short at just 30 seconds, and it quickly establishes the basics of Top Gear; there will be plenty of high-end sports cars, they will be driven quickly, and some odd-ball hijinks will happen.

    We spotted the Lamborghini Huracán Spyder, Acura NSX, BAC Mono, and a Cadillac CTS-V. In addition, the team will be taking a look at some other machinery, such as side-by-side off-road buggies, police cars, low riders, and something orange and beat-up. And in the hijinks department, there are drive-thrus, crashes through boxes, and some cringe-worthy singing.

    Our initial impressions varied from somewhat nonplussed to mild concern. We'll save our final judgement for when the first episode airs. We just hope there isn't too much singing.
    http://www.autoblog.com/2017/06/28/n...usauto00000015


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    JCE
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    I've got mixed feelings here. I just watched almost all of season 6 and I have really grown to like these three. Shame the BBC got rid of them. I like Tom Ford and all but I'd prefer to keep these three since they've developed a good chemistry already. Damn it BBC, Top Gear US was getting really good the past few seasons. Fuck this is irritating.

    Quote Originally Posted by transtek View Post
    That's a shame. The previous TGUSA threesome had found a groove and really worked together as a team. Seems a big step backwards not to use them. Hopefully they will be offered their own show somewhere else?


    Amazon should step in here me thinks.
    Last edited by JCE; July 7th, 2017 at 1:44 AM.
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    Holy mother of god, that is the worst TG branded thing I've seen in my life. And I have watched every single episodes and special of TG, TGUS and TGAU.

    While the old TG US was getting damn nearly as good as TG UK (not quite, but it was fun), this was an utter abomination.

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    Yeah, was not impressed. I accept it's Episode 01, but I need to see real improvement by season's end to come back next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dishayu View Post
    Holy mother of god, that is the worst TG branded thing I've seen in my life.
    +1

    I certainly miss the previous TG US. The new show had absolutely no chemistry between the hosts nor flow between blatant product placement segments (films). What was the purpose of the Mexico thing? A rip-off of TGT dune buggies from season 1?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dishayu View Post
    Holy mother of god, that is the worst TG branded thing I've seen in my life. And I have watched every single episodes and special of TG, TGUS and TGAU.

    While the old TG US was getting damn nearly as good as TG UK (not quite, but it was fun), this was an utter abomination.
    Yes, I skipped through most of it, but was unimpressed. Hope it gets better, but right now it's the spray-on tan of Top Gears

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    Quote Originally Posted by JCE View Post
    I've got mixed feelings here. I just watched almost all of season 6 and I have really grown to like these three. Shame the BBC got rid of them. I like Tom Ford and all but I'd prefer to keep these three since they've developed a good chemistry already. Damn it BBC, Top Gear US was getting really good the past few seasons. Fuck this is irritating.
    No mixed feelings here .... that's not a promo, that's a warning!

    As many have said, the last series had the team bouncing off one another nicely, not unlike another threesome, so why the re-invention?
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    JCE
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    Should I bother trying to watch this new one? Or boycott it like I do with the UK version?
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    Just turned it off 5 minutes in, I might try it again later but so far it's awful.

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    I'm half way in and in need of a break.

    If it doesn't get any better it could be the last one I watch.
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    JCE
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    That bad? Even with Tom Wookie Ford?
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCE View Post
    That bad? Even with Tom Wookie Ford?
    It's dire. I wouldn't bother with this one, maybe the next episode will be better.

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