(Editor’s Note: This post contains spoilers. If you do not want to know what happened in the last episode of Top Gear airing on June 28th, 2015, then do not read on any further.)
“This is a car programme. There will be no cushions. There will be no rag rolling. No one will sing, and at the end of the series no one will have a recording contract. This is our new base, and this is our purpose-built test track. There are no traffic jams here, well apart from this one. And no bus lanes, either. This is Top Gear.” – Jeremy Clarkson, Top Gear [01×01]
And now it’s over. Earlier tonight the folks at the BBC aired the final episode of Top Gear featuring the current format and hosts. It was a 72 minute cobbling together of two episodes that had already been filmed. It also, of course, lacked Jeremy Clarkson in the studio.
For a show that has thrilled and entertained me for 22 seasons (or series, if you will), the end was very anti-climatic. I suppose that’s to be expected when one of the hosts punches a producer in the face and gets himself shit-canned from the show before the series ends.
Of course, the films were made when Clarkson was still employed by the BBC, so he was in the final episode a lot. Both of the films they showed were decent by normal standards, but not particularly enthralling. They definitely aren’t what you’d want to see from a show that is never going to be the same way again.
The first film involved the boys buying old cars and attempting to see why people like to own them and see what they do with them. They all pick cars that you already know are going to have reliability issues, and they are given a series of challenges.
I just finished watching the episode and I can’t even remember who won the challenge because I was quite bored during it. If that episode would’ve aired by itself, there would have hopefully been a car review or decent Star in a Reasonably Priced Car to keep the episode interesting.
The second film was more entertaining, as the boys buy SUVs for less than £250 and then were put through a series of challenges. This film had some redeeming qualities, mainly when they hook up to caravans and race around an oval.
The final challenge involves all three off-roading to a final destination where the loser would have to give an after-dinner speech to some environmentalists. It was a fun bit to watch, and was lost by Richard Hammond.
Obviously, this isn’t how the series was supposed to end. There were going to be better episodes. It’s almost a sad way to end such a long run of show that has been so popular, but it is what it is.
Chris Evans will be bringing back Top Gear in the future, and it appears that the boys will find a new home on ITV with a new car show. Hopefully, the magic is carried over there.
Until then, it was nice knowing you Top Gear. It’s not how I wanted it to end, but it did entertain me for quite a few years.
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