Wednesday, July 02, 2008

On Top Gear

On Top Gear

Woo-hoo! Top Gear is back!

Top Gear is really Blue Peter for grown ups.

Blue Peter for grown-ups who still want to be kids.

They've even got a dog.

Think about it. Three presenters in a studio, doing all the things you'd like to do, but can't.

Back in the day, before it turned all shouty as they desperately tried to pander to TEH KIDZ, Blue Peter set out to show children from poorer backgrounds experiences they wouldn't otherwise experience, and to have studio pets they might not otherwise be able to afford.

BP went to Tonga and the Ivory Coast, because there was no way on God's Earth that you would ever see those places in normal circumstances. They took holidays for you, jumped out of airplanes and got to wrap Janet Ellis in clingfilm*.

John Noakes went down the bobsleigh run on his arse for YOU.

Top Gear, then, drive around in Ferraris and Bugattis because, frankly, you've got a Mondeo and haven't got a cat in Hell's chance of getting your hands on – in the words of poor, dead Kenny Everett - anything sleek, red, sexy and just right for picking up girls.

You, owner of a Vauxhall Astra, will never get the chance to choose between four-door supercar estates, so Richard Hammond gets to do it for you. The short-arsed, spawny git.

James May gets to drive Bentleys because you've got something with only three wheel, and Clarkson gets to do all the exciting stuff whilst shouting "POWWWWWER!" because a) it's his programme and b) he's got quite extraordinary pots of money. And you haven't.

It's all about aspirational ownership. They're test-driving frankly astoundingly expensive cars because you'd never get past the credit check if you turn up at your local Porsche dealer demanding a week-long test drive. If you really want a ten-minute discussion on the shape of the gear knob on a Mini Metro, I suggest you watch old Top Gear. With Noel Edmonds.

In fact, just about the only think you and I have in common with Top Gear is that Richard Hammond gives his crappy old car a name, and mine is now referred to as Toshiko, The Silver Hornet Which Is Actually Silver. Toshiko even talks if I prod the person riding shotgun hard enough: "You're an excellent driver!"

Hammond, of course, is the new Noakes, being the presenter most likely to get killed TO DEATH in the name of pointless televisual entertainment.

If that's the case, that makes James May of the lovely hair Valerie Singleton, which means he'd have to have a one-night stand with ...ooooooh... too terrible to contemplate.

* Probably. I'm having a few problems separating reality from teenage sexual fantasy

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