Top Gear U.S.A. Sucks Monkey Balls

Top Gear USA

I’ve been a long time fan of the BBC series Top Gear, I’ve watched it since it’s relaunch, that’s 19 semi-annual series so far and love the show.  I don’t even particularly give a damn about cars, certainly not the supercars that they spend all of their time on, but the show is fun and funny and smart, it doesn’t really even matter what it’s about.  A long time ago, some U.S. channel tried cutting up BBC episodes for a U.S. audience and it failed miserably, as well it should.  Shows shouldn’t be cut up, just show them straight or don’t show them at all.  I think it made it through 14 episodes before they gave up.  Yes, I have those episodes.

Then, back in 2010, they announced they were making a totally original Top Gear for an American audience, with American hosts, a focus on American cars, but patterned after the BBC series.  Alright, I’m a sucker for something new so I gave it a shot.  The first season wasn’t so bad, although I will admit, I couldn’t stand any of the hosts and they never got any better.  They had no chemistry together, they didn’t complement each other like the BBC hosts do and frankly, it doesn’t even seem they like each other all that much.  However, I had to admit that, as copies go, they were at least trying.  They had their own Stig, they put stars in reasonably priced cars, they had contests and news etc., just like the real Top Gear.

But as time went on, most of that went away and it became little more than idiots behind the wheel.  Instead of their road trips being one segment of an episode, it became the entire episode.  They never talked about cars, especially new ones, they just  drove around old pieces of junk for no particular reason.  There was no more Stig.  There were no more celebrities.  They didn’t test cars around their track.  Everything that made the show worth watching, even if it was a pale shadow of the BBC show was gone.  Now it was just three asshats with driver’s licenses.

Fuck that.

They’re not even particularly interesting asshats with driver’s licenses.  Pretty much, the only credible car guy on the show is Tanner Foust, a rally driver, but he’s not very good as a host.  He’s absurdly competitive, but unlike Jeremy Clarkson, his competitiveness isn’t fun, it’s annoying.  Rutledge Wood is a race analyst for the Speed Channel and he’ll throw a couple of technical facts around but he’s not very good at it.  Then you have Adam Ferrara, who has no car  chops whatsoever, he’s ostensibly a comedian, but he’s just not at all funny and never has been.

I guess it was just too expensive to get half-million dollar supercars to run around the track and maybe the ratings weren’t all that good so that celebrities, unlike on the BBC series, weren’t coming out of the woodwork begging to be on the show.  Whereas the BBC show films all over the world, driving cars through Europe, North and South America, they’ve been through some of the highest places on the planet and through the most desolate places you can go.  Where does Top Gear U.S.A. go?  Southern California.  The swamps of Florida.  In fact, I don’t think they’ve made it out of the country yet.  In the last episode I’ve seen, they made it right up to the border of Mexico and stopped filming.  It’s just sad.  Either History Channel can’t afford to do this show right or they have no interest in doing it right.  Either way, there’s just not enough here to keep me watching week after week.

Oh wait, did I say week after week?  Try semi-occasionally.  They ran the first half of this season back in August and September, then didn’t bother telling anyone when it was coming back.  Episodes started airing in late January again and we really have no idea how many episodes will be in this season, History Channel is notoriously awful about actually providing lists of episodes, or even totals of episodes, to anyone.  Will it run 10 episodes, which is as far as they’ve hinted?  12?  16?  450?  Who the hell knows!  I just checked 7 different online TV listings and every single one of them, including the History Channel site and the BBC Top Gear site have a different number of episodes.  It’s a guessing game.

Well I’m tired of guessing.  I’m tired of paying attention to this sad, pathetic shadow of the real show.  This will be my last season of Top Gear U.S.A., assuming they don’t get cancelled, they haven’t announced anywhere that there will be a season 4.  I don’t care if there is or not.  It’s just not fun to watch.  The hosts suck, the cars suck, the contests suck and every single thing that made this Top Gear has been dropped from the show.  You know what else has been dropped?

Top Gear U.S.A.  By me.

41 thoughts on “Top Gear U.S.A. Sucks Monkey Balls

  1. I have never seen the Brit version, but you are right about the U.S. version. I have watched 4-5 episodes of that, and it is terrible. I'd far rather have a show where they test cars and provide useful information. I'm not sure who their target audience is, but it seems like it might be fans of bad game shows.
    My recent post Who Controls the Atheist Movement?

    1. Well, I don't know about providing useful information, Top Gear really isn't a consumer-reports kind of show, it's three guys who love cars, have a sense of humor and a great chemistry together, that's why they've been partnered up on the air for so many years.

      But you really ought to see some, they show it on BBC America all the time.

    2. The UK version is brilliant. Watch it. I'm Australian and they tried it here too. It's wasn't shit like the USA show. Well it was but for different reasons. We couldn't afford any good cars. Our hosts were rubbish too compared to the UK version but nowhere near as bad as the USA show. USA version is so Fake and scripted it is nauseating.

  2. I'd watch it if Adam Carolla hosted. He was picked up after he did a pilot for the show, but had another sitcom in the works by the time they let him know. (The sitcom didn't get picked up, so I wish he dropped it for the Top Gear gig.)

    1. Adam Carolla is just as bad and stupid as these three asshats. They need to just disappear and leave Top Gear to the real version. UK

  3. yall are idiots its 3 guys that are friends going around in cars the show chose doing challenges and having fun and its american not british y do you think they are two different countries

  4. Freaking Brits. You like all your tea and crumpets and your silly info shows. You just don't get our American humor. I watch it for fun. Not to learn about about cars and track times. Merica!

    1. Dumbass, I'm an American. The whole reason they are making an American version is because Top Gear is so hugely popular, not only in the UK, but in the US as well. They just don't have the money or the connections to make an American version right. You don't license a name for something, and yes, they are paying for the name Top Gear, and then not do it justice.

    2. This is what this show is about that's why they made it. Making learning fun for cars. But Top Gear US doesn't have the fun part

      1. Which is fine, but you don't try to steal the thunder from another show by using the same name and then not do any of the things that made the original show great. It comes off as blatantly dishonest. Rename the show and people can safely ignore it without thinking that it's got to be similar to the original.

    3. Im the definition of America let me tell you those three little girls hosting top gear are not the brits are making us look bad… we have a 16-year-old driving to fairies around. Like I said you sound like a girl! us real men like to know about cars… everything about them. Not watch three ferries run around trying to entertain me by blowing things up which I watch the last seven years of all other reality shows not to mention they know nothing about cars it's called top gear for reason… call it blowing up crap wile 3 Ferrys attempt to drive cars.

  5. The American version sucks, period. The U.K. Top Gear is entertaining, has great celebrity guests, it has humor, sarcasm, amazing cars, and it's just a great show to watch. Top Gear U.S.A. is unfunny, the hosts have no chemistry with each other whatsoever, the jokes are forced. It's a terrible show and should never have been made.

    1. They started out alright, but around the middle of the second season, it all went south and they stopped being Top Gear and started being Three Unfunny Guys driving crappy cars across America.

      Pass. They're filming series 20 of the UK Top Gear now. I'll watch that.

  6. Your review of the show is spot on. Terrible hosts, unsophisticated, a guy that wants to drift every car around – nobody except a few young kids wants to watch that. Virtually ALL of the things that have made the original show have been left out. I can't believe they got it so wrong – I was looking forward to it now it's just a big dissapointment. IF somebody else has an idea to do a car show don't bring that Tanner Foust guy in. He is a nobody with NO personality at all.

  7. I couldn’t agree more. The american version sucks. Love the guys in the UK. The US take on the show is an insult to the series. Every one involved with the american series should be kicked in the face and never allowed to do anything in television again.

    1. The problem is, they even tried to emulate the UK show at the beginning, they had a star in a reasonably priced car, they actually talked about cars, now it's just driving around in 70s cars looking like assholes.

  8. Before I comment I would like to note that I watched Top Gear UK, Fifth Gear, Top Gear Aus, and even Top Gear Korea. By far in a long way, Top Gear USA is the worst of the bunch.

    Lets begin with elephant in the room shall we?

    Top Gear, on the History Channel. Mind you before I watched the first season of Top Gear USA I had boycotted the History Channel for presenting shows almost exclusively devoid of history. Oh, I'm sorry. American Pickers and Pawn Stars are making history everyday. Or so the History Channel repeatedly tries to explain. What History does Top Gear provide? Mind you, back when Top Gear had long specials on car makes, one could probably say a portion of Top Gear programs is dedicated to history? But that portion better be below 10% because the program was not designed for that. That in and of it's self was a warning to me that the show might, just might be worst than changing a flat tire in the rain.

    Problem number two, the hosts;

    Tanner Foust, is a good driver. However, as a host he is not really likable in the same respects as Tiff. This would not be such a problem if he was paired with people that could make up for this but unfortunately…
    Adam Farrara, is a comedian, but none of his jokes are funny to me. Now, comedy is personal. And I would understand if anyone from New York or a comparable place found his jokes funny. But I personally didn't.
    Rutledge Wood, I've heard he was working on the Speed Chanel and so might have a place on this show with Foust but to be honest, he never made much of an impression. He was almost, completely forgotten midway through commercial one.

    To be a great host on a show like Top Gear requires five things:
    Wit- The ability to see something the audience generally wouldn't see and move in on it.
    Humor- The Ability to keep the audience and those with no automotive enthusiasm happy and engaged.
    Passion- The ability to express feelings and emotions about the object of which you are presenting.
    Knowledge- You must now some facts that the average viewer is not capable of knowing without actually owning or having driven the vehicle.
    And above all Chemistry- To give an example, the Top Gear UK presenters have gone to each others house. Although this might sound pointless, this helps the presenters get a feel for their college and understand his tastes in certain things and also increases their chance to express their new knowledge, wit, and humor tot he audience in turn.

    Problem Number three, the cars;

    Top Gear USA brought nothing new to the table as far as cars were concerned. And that for me was the killing point. Because that small action showed that neither the American Top Gear presenters, nor the staff at the History Channel cared at all about what they were doing. I understand why Top Gear UK doesn't present some American cars, their difficult to procure their. So instead they test some obscure European makes. Top Gear Aus, tests cars that only exist in Australia. But USA? No, it sticks to the exact same cars one can get in the UK and else where. Where is the Mosler? Where is the SSC Aero? Where is Panoz? One could say that Mosler is no longer in business and their for would not be a good vehicle to show to the public. But that didn't stop Top Gear UK for showing cars from Saab?

    Problem number four, the car reviews;

    Unlike the other Top Gear versions, reviews are done, with such a rush that I feel as if they are trying to deliberately get them out of the way as quickly as possible in order to perform a pointless test. The Apache versus Viper was cinematically entertaining but still flat. A better review would of been, taking the Viper through the small town which would of undoubtedly have ruff roads, to show case the suspension travel and ride comfort. Then finish up with a drive through the back country roads showcasing the history of the Viper through Shelby & Lee, the Series 1, and the old Cobra. (In hindsight, that might actually make it relevant to it creditors as a Historical Program.)

    I didn't stay with the show long enough to see it degenerate into what you said. I'm sorry but I, the interest, the need, the want to watch the next episode isn't there. I understand all shows have their initial problems, and kinks to work out. But I also understand this. VERY few American remakes old any substance to it's original fore-barer. The only way American Top Gear can survive is through Innovative effort. Unfortunately for Top Gear USA Innovation is in very short supply within the United States. For those of you still watching Top Gear USA I applaud your commitment. However, I can not force my self to watch garage anymore than I can force my self to eat such.

    1. I agree with everything you say here. I saw commercials for Top Gear U.S. coming back, today, I think, and I have no interest in watching it ever again. However, you said that Top Gear UK didn't show case American cars, they most certainly do, they've had them shipped over in the past and most American cars are for sale in the UK and Europe, although often under different names. The problem with Top Gear U.S. is mostly that it's on History Channel, which just doesn't have the money to spend like the BBC does. It can't afford supercars more than once or twice a season so it settles on old junkers and driving around like idiots. To do Top Gear requires being able to get the best of the best. Europe has easy access to all the latest and greatest supercars. The U.S. doesn't. Combine that with a lack of money and you get Top Gear U.S.

      No thanks, I'd rather watch Jeremy, Richard and Captain Slow.

  9. I specifically googled something to find a place where I can bash Top Gear USA and Tanner Foust. That guy is making the show unbearable to watch. Like the author mentions, his competitiveness is childish and annoying. I'm not sure if he thinks he's trying to be funny. The guy is compensating for something by showing off all the time and doing donuts. I know he is the only one on the show with any driving chops, but he feels the need to constantly remind everyone of that. I watch the show because I like cars and will watch any car show over other reality TV , news or stupid scripted shows. Its only a shadow on the UK version , but I'd still like for them to keep it going another season or two.

    1. Personally, I hate Adam the most, he's a talentless hack with no real reason to be on the show except he's supposed to be "funny", which he's not. Tanner is the only one that really has the qualifications to be there, but like you said, he's far too competitive, and it's not honest competitiveness, it's cartoony. None of the hosts have any chemistry whatsoever, unlike the UK team.

      I've got so much to watch, with the potential of 13 shows airing per week for the fall season, that I don't have to find something to waste my time on. Top Gear US didn't make the cut.

  10. I have an idea for you cry babies, cry a little more and write your thoughts down here, kiss each others asses, and dont watch the show!


  11. Damn right! Top Gear US has not been shown for a particularly long time here in Sweden but it is a show that is absolutely pathetic in every sense of the word. The three hosts are pathetically bad and a pain to watch. Absolutely no charisma between each other. The show is an incredible, not a spin off, but a rip off travesty. I wish the three of them could drive off a cliff and die, or at least disappear. Then the show might, just might, be somewhat interesting.

  12. Mmmk i know this post is probably dead but here goes, to all the dumbasses saying that Top Gear US is a good show and is better than the UK version…..Seriously, f*ck off. you know nothing about cars, your'e just little 12 year olds excited to see cars that you will never even come close to seeing IRL. The hosts on US are very dull and boring, Trying too hard to be like their British counterparts. The show is PAINFULLY scripted, whereas the UK version may be scripted IDK but i sure cant tell it. so seriously, guys quit being ignorant, no Top Gear spinoff is ever gonna be better than the original…. OH Yea, I'm an American!

  13. They should just drop the three douche bags and get real americans and real car enthusiest. Here is an example if you take over the top stacie david throw in travis pastrona or another larger than life person then finish it up with the guy from my classic car i am telling you there is a formula for a u.s version right there.

    1. I wouldn't even care if it was just some random American car program, they've done worse things on History Channel and I'd just ignore it, but they're using the Top Gear name and supposedly copying the successful Top Gear formula, but they can't even copy right. This is not Top Gear. This isn't even Fifth Gear. This is Low Gear.

  14. O love cars and fast driving i'm amator rally driver and a Top Gear veteran even the us version and im finishing my journalism degree but DAM!!!
    DAM!!! DAM!! i can't take it anymore its not the hosts Tanner doesn't bother me he is pure speed. Its not the cars. It's empty format and moronic challenges…OMG! television for stupid and stupider!!!!!

  15. Dit..fucking…o!….PS the only way I could differentiat between them vanished when the fat one lost weight!!!!!!!!!

  16. I haven’t watched TG US so i wouldn’t know… (might planned to watch it, while waiting any further news about Clarkson)

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