The End For Top Gear
A trio of men having a laugh all while pursuing a passion they love in some genuinely informative programming? A format we’re unlikely to see make a comeback any time soon after the BBC have made another serious misstep in the cancellation of the long-running and much beloved Top Gear.
To take a show off the air after garnering fans across multiple decades and generations seems criminal and is a serious blow to the BBC scheduling - I dread to think of the fluff that will end up filling its slot, probably yet another gardening show or some insufferable segment focused on targeting ‘young people’.
Of course it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge what is seemingly the driving force behind it being laid to rest. The incident that saw Freddie Flintoff suffer injuries should of course be taken seriously especially after previous host Richard Hammond was also in a worrying crash. But to cancel the programme completely feels like the BBC panicking and taking things a step too far, they’ve rushed headlong first towards health and safety madness without thinking, as usual.
If Flintoff did not want to return then that’s understandable and completely up to him, but there are plenty of talented petrol heads who could’ve taken up his presenting reins without compromising the integrity of the programme.
Filling The Void
One of my concerns lies largely with the diehard Top Gear viewers. Undoubtedly, some of the show’s biggest supporters are currently some of the most disenfranchised demographics who will no longer see themselves represented on screen. The broadcaster now has been left with a responsibility to fill the void left by the show with something appropriate for the audience it should not be leaving behind.
While the misguided would argue it’s something of an old fashioned ‘boys club’, with the way the world is now the programme in recent years has become rather refreshing. It’s a haven for boys being boys, enjoying some good banter together. Genuine harmless fun. Men deserve good quality programming that they can relate to just as much as anybody else. I can’t help but feel the BBC would’ve tried to get rid of it sooner or later regardless.
While the most recent presenting line-up of Flintoff, Chris Harris and Paddy McGuinness saw the show recapture some of its former magic, the BBC’s biggest mistake was letting Hammond, James May and Jeremy Clarkson out of their grasp in the first place.
The three who really made the show what it was. If the Beeb don’t want to bring Top Gear back, I’d love nothing more than to see the three musketeers back together under a new format in a prime time slot where they belong.
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