For over a decade, car enthusiasts had an accurate and entertaining representation in television programs. This was all thanks to the British Broadcasting Corporation's hit show, Top Gear. Launched in 2002, Top Gear steadily became a favorite amongst automotive enthusiasts.
However, all good things must (at some point) come to an end. As such, Top Gear would see its last days NOT in the literal sense, but in the metaphorical. Of course, this was caused by the departure of Top Gear's main cast: Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May, following a "fracas" with a B.B.C. producer.
Even though Top Gear was without its star-studded hosts, the B.B.C. wanted to keep the show going, particularly given how lucrative it was. Though, the old Top Gear we had come to know and love was already gone, replaced by a shadow of its former self.
Don't believe us? Well, allow us to elaborate on how Top Gear isn't the same since Hammond, Clarkson, and May left for greener pastures...
To start off, we have to explain the unique problem the B.B.C. found itself in upon Clarkson's sacking. The company still had a ton of money and plenty of resources to keep the show going, but they had lost a critical part of the show, the cast. Along with that, the fan base was seriously divided afterwards.
Where the show would go was completely unknown at that point. They were, essentially, at the mercy of the fanbase to keep the show going. As we would come to see, the B.B.C. were blindly throwing anything to the wall to see what would stick. Evidently, little did.
Mo' Money To No Money
Before the shake-up in 2015, Top Gear was easily one of the most profitable and well-received series on their network. All that would abruptly end once Clarkson, Hammond, and May. According to sources at the time, the restructuring of Top Gear would cost £500 million and over one-thousand jobs when all was said and done.
The loss of extra revenue streams hit the B.B.C. hard. They had to cut back on a majority of programs, including Top Gear itself. None of that helped, either, when the new hosts/situations were already poorly selected from the get-go. Interestingly enough, this brings us neatly into our next reason...
Capable, Charismatic Hosts
The most obvious reason why the new Top Gear is but a shadow of its former self is the absence of Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond. Aside from the awesome cars, the show was reliant of the skills of the hosts; whether they could turn a boring road-trip into a hilarious experience that could be enjoyed multiple times.
The classic trio had charisma in the purest sense of the word. Each member worked perfectly together; bouncing off jokes from one to the other, whilst still introducing important/usable information on what they were doing. The new hosts can barely keep the audience awake, let alone drop jaws.
In fairness, however, Chris Harris is a wonderful entertainer. Comparatively, Harris is the most experienced in the Top Gear-esk style of filmmaking (given his past with Drive).
Circumstances As Epic As The Cars Themselves
Finally, there are the scenarios in which the Top Gear boys find themselves. Now, we're not saying that the new age Top Gear doesn't do some wild stuff. Obviously they do: such as racing a fighter jet with a McLaren Speedtail, going on cross-country trips, etc.
Did you notice something, though? Perhaps, it's that all of this has been done before, and done better with the old crew. It feels (to us) as if Top Gear is in a creative rut in which there's no escape. Thankfully for Clarkson, Hammond, and May, though, they appear to have gotten out just in the nick of time.