Author Topic: no other country has idiots quite like these  (Read 3114 times)

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Offline thaiga

no other country has idiots quite like these
« on: January 26, 2015, 03:51:12 PM »
Top Gear: no other country has idiots quite like these

Pompous Clarkson, nerdy May and pesky Hammond are inimitably British, says Michael Hogan


The boys are back: (l-r) Richard Hammond, Jeremy Clarkson, James May and "The Stig" Photo: BBC

 Some say it’s sexist, racist and homophobic. Some say it’s the best show on TV. Whatever. All we know is that Top Gear is a global blockbuster hit which shows no signs of slowing down.

BBC Two’s petrol-soaked, engine-revving, fender-bending institution is officially the most watched factual TV programme in the world. The latest series, which starts on Sunday night (BBC Two, 8pm), is a perfect example of Top Gear’s multi-media, multi-national nature. Hitting the track in the “reasonably priced car” during this run are Hollywood stars Will Smith and Kiefer Sutherland, alongside home-grown figures like Ed Sheeran (who doesn't even have a driving licence). The series launches with a simultaneous broadcast in more than 50 countries. A further 10 will screen it within 24 hours of its UK premiere. Filmed in a Surrey aircraft hangar and fronted by three middle-aged men, it’s a car-crashing phenomenon that has conquered the planet.

So how did a provocatively pompous Yorkshireman, a mop-topped Bristolian nerd and a Brummie human-hamster hybrid become so beloved around the globe?

Half-a-dozen countries have launched their own licensed versions of Top Gear: namely the USA, Australia, Russia, South Korea and, debuting this year, China and France. These watered-down local brews, though, are still dwarfed by the original.

The Top Gear that we know and love/hate (delete according to taste) - the one fronted by Messrs Clarkson, May and Hammond - has been sold to 214 territories and is watched by 350m viewers per week. It's the web’s most illegally downloaded show and has 15m Facebook fans worldwide. Top Gear Live tours to 24 countries, Top Gear Magazine’s global circulation is 1.67m and the show makes the BBC's commercial arm £300m per year. Accept no imitations because nobody does it better than us. It’s got the Emmy Awards to prove it.

 Most countries can't recreate Top Gear in their own vernacular because of its rare alchemy: it has high-budget, glossy production at one end but endearingly ramshackle rank amateurishness at the other. Us Brits do both these things well and make beautiful, cinematic television while we’re at it. Most nations would also struggle to find three big enough idiots to front it. They need to be boorish but self-aware, blokey but trainspotter-ish, mercilessly mickey-taking but with chemistry and camaraderie. Loveably laddish overgrown schoolboys, puffed up with horsepower, testosterone and the arrogance of empire.

Clarkson and “Captain Slow” especially behave as if the British empire had never crumbled into dust, hence their gleefully unreconstructed “up yours, Johnny Foreigner” attitude. This has, of course, tipped over into scandals: ridiculing Germans, Mexicans, Asians and Poles, plus supposedly taunting Argentinians over the Falklands.

 Yet the three amigos aren’t the blinkered small islanders that critics would have you believe. They’re in thrall to German engineering, Italian style and American cool, while acknowledging with a sarcastic, self-deprecating shrug that anything Brit-built tends to fall to pieces. They might pretend to hate “abroad” yet they can’t wait to go on globe-trotting road trips. Their tongues are firmly in their cheeks and they prove that age-old rule that if you’re funny and charismatic, you can get away with almost anything.

Now 22 series old in its current form, this hardy perennial remains as popular as ever at home too. The waiting list for audience tickets is effectively 21 years long. You don’t have to be a petrolhead to enjoy it, just a lover of stunts and smartarsery. Forty per cent of viewers are women. Eco-conscious liberals admits it’s a vicarious guilty pleasure. Executive producer Andy Wilman - who, along with his childhood mate Clarkson, masterminded the show’s reboot into its current format - cheerfully admits it’s “aimed at people with a mental age of nine”.

It can even be seen as a sort of skewed sitcom. Men Behaving Badly behind the wheel. Alan Partridge made real. A peacetime Dad's Army, in which Clarkson’s the pompous Captain Mainwaring figure, May’s the brains of the outfit and Hammond is a cheeky officer's batman (stupid boy!) who represents the coming of the new guard.

Boys will be boys, it seems, wherever those boys happen to be located. It might make some of us wince with embarrassment that it’s one of our biggest exports but Top Gear is still a great British success story. And these days, we should be grateful for every one of those we can get. So thanks, boys. And on that bombshell, goodnight.

telegraph
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline dawn

Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2015, 05:34:11 PM »

The Top Gear that we know and love/hate (delete according to taste) - the one fronted by Messrs Clarkson, May and Hammond - has been sold to 214 territories and is watched by 350m viewers per week. It's the web’s most illegally downloaded show and has 15m Facebook fans worldwide. Top Gear Live tours to 24 countries, Top Gear Magazine’s global circulation is 1.67m and the show makes the BBC's commercial arm £300m per year. Accept no imitations because nobody does it better than us. It’s got the Emmy Awards to prove it.

 
some say it's a bit like marmite
the earliest light of day
 

Offline Roger

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Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2015, 08:26:20 PM »
Grouch. It's enough to make me read a book. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Cocky s*ds. Idjits. I dislike 'Top Gear' as much as I like Marmite D. That's serious. ATB
 

Offline thaiga

Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2015, 09:07:27 PM »
I have to agree with you roger, but i do like a bit of marmite on toast ;)

Yes they are as boring as **** but they do seem to be pulling the punters £ £ £ £ £ s
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline Roger

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Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2015, 11:33:00 AM »
It's about Marmite really - I see that you can get a Marmite flavoured Easter egg in the UK this year.
Now IMO that actually makes some sense -try Marmite on toast with strawberry jam - highly recommended !
Or with eggs on toast, a Marmite stripe underneath the eggs does taste really good.
Dawn sorry but Marmite is a Love it or Love it choice !
But Top Gear - yuuk !
 

Offline thaiga

Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2015, 01:01:35 PM »
Yes roger chocolate eggs tasting of marmite and Pot Noodles.   Any comments on the the vaseline guys.



Marmite loses bestselling spread title to Rowse Honey
UK's love-hate relationship with Marmite takes turn for worse as sales fall 5%, while Rowse Honey sales soar 18%
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
 

Offline Roger

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Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2015, 03:46:50 PM »
AND that brings me to war criminal Tony Blair who seeks to advise Brits of the Labour shade, not to vote for Mr Corbyn. Blair is a Tosser.
Thaiga, other countries do have idiots like Tony Bliar yes IMO (as an answer), but should they listen ??
If Corbyn is voted in, so be it.
 

Offline Roger

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Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2015, 06:20:10 PM »
And bl**dy hell, the Mad Hatter Bliar now accuses Corbyn of being in the world of Alice in Wonderland.
Come on Mr Chilcott - let's have that report and lock Bliar up asap.
I miss Saf as we could have had a good argy bargy about this.
And where is Taman Tun ?
ATB
 

Online Taman Tun

Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2015, 07:35:15 PM »
Hi Roger, Couldn't resist this one!  Yes, Jeremy Corbyn has really upset the apple cart.  The Westminster politicos are really angry that he will be the new leader.  For some reason they do not seem amused that a lot of youngsters have signed up to vote for him.  Personally, I am very disappointed by some of his declared policies so far.  Railway carriages for women passengers only?  What is so revolutionary about that?  Comrades, what we want is full nationalization without compensation.
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 

Offline Roger

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Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2015, 03:14:12 PM »
Hi TT well there you are !
As I said, if Corbyn is voted in, so be it. I don't see Labour getting back into Government for at least a decade anyway.
Women only railway carriages - the idea doesn't stand up to examination IMO.
I could get a bit more excited with a 'get rid of the House of Lords' policy.
Agree with you on nationalisation - start with the electricity and gas industries !
So long since you posted I though you'd got that job you mentioned !
ATB
 

Online Taman Tun

Re: no other country has idiots quite like these
« Reply #10 on: September 02, 2015, 12:08:53 AM »
Yes, agree about House of Lords.  I saw today that Boris is proposing a programme of voluntary euthanasia for Their Lordships!  Eight hundred of the old codgers..far too many.  Most of them are just retired time servers from the main political parties.  It is almost 5 years to the next election but a Boris versus Jeremy contest is an interesting possibility.  I am sure that would work wonders for the level of interest.
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 

 



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