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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Is Top Gear UK now toast?

View Poll Results: Is Top Gear UK finished?
Poll Options:
It's a publicity stunt. 1 votes (5.56%)
No. the BBC will pardon him, again. 9 votes (50.00%)
Yes. Jeremy will move on to start his own show. 3 votes (16.67%)
Yes. Clarkson's career is basically over. 1 votes (5.56%)
No. They'll get a new presenter to replace him. 2 votes (11.11%)
No. They'll scrap all the presenters and get 3 new ones. 2 votes (11.11%)
Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll
Is Top Gear UK now toast? (Page 2)
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Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 15, 2015, 11:44 AM
 
They weren't refused visas, never have been. That was a stunt based on the wording on the common US journalist visa they've used countless times in the past, they just decided to make it part of the act. Top Gear is entertainment and fiction, it's not to be taken literally.

Also, Clarkson doesn't hate electric cars, he simply thought it would be a funny skit at the expense of a company he imagined would be out of business soon (like every other small electric car company). However, like most people, he underestimated Elon Musk and was taken to task for it. If there's any one skit he wishes he could take back, it's probably that one.
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subego
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Mar 15, 2015, 01:03 PM
 
Is Clarkson actually racist, or just crotchety?

From experiencing 10 minutes worth of him, I'd say crotchety.
     
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Mar 15, 2015, 01:29 PM
 
It's casual racism that's excused by "racial and national stereotyping is a robust part of British humour" to quote the BBC. In other words, if you don't think it's funny it's your own fault, or, our humour trumps your sensitivities.

As far as electric cars are concerned, he tried the same stunt with Nissan, where the team run down the battery to 40% before starting the "test".

The argument that the show is not to be taken seriously is nonsense when it is based on the idea of "testing" cars. The average viewer has no way Knowing that the "test" in question has been rigged.
     
subego
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Mar 15, 2015, 01:41 PM
 
I'm not asking the BBC's opinion, I'm asking yours.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 15, 2015, 01:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Is Clarkson actually racist, or just crotchety?

From experiencing 10 minutes worth of him, I'd say crotchety.
The character he plays on Top Gear is crotchety, in real life he appears to be goofball.
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Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 15, 2015, 01:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
As far as electric cars are concerned, he tried the same stunt with Nissan, where the team run down the battery to 40% before starting the "test".
They were exaggerating the issue that exists with all electric cars for comedic effect. QED, he loves the BMW i8, absolutely adored it when driving in all electric "Eco mode", what he hates is the hellish wait for recharging, that's required with all current EVs.

The argument that the show is not to be taken seriously is nonsense when it is based on the idea of "testing" cars. The average viewer has no way Knowing that the "test" in question has been rigged.
Not my argument, it's from an official BBC statement:

Ms. Davies, the BBC spokeswoman, said several times in an interview that “Top Gear” was “an entertainment program.”
http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2008...er-misleading/
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Mar 15, 2015, 02:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
The character he plays on Top Gear is crotchety, in real life he appears to be goofball.
Speaking as a goofball, calling my producer of over 10 years a "dumb Irish c*nt" and then cold-cocking him isn't in the playbook.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 15, 2015, 02:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Speaking as a goofball, calling my producer of over 10 years a "dumb Irish c*nt" and then cold-cocking him isn't in the playbook.
That's alleged, it hasn't been confirmed, at all.
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subego
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Mar 15, 2015, 02:22 PM
 
Well, presumably, we'll get a better idea if it's true or not in the upcoming days.

If true, far more crotchety than goofball.
     
subego
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Mar 15, 2015, 03:57 PM
 
My favorite quote in all this is May's response to the question of whether Clarkson was innocent.

"Of being a knob? No."
     
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Mar 17, 2015, 08:12 AM
 
Well I can't imagine this is a good sign.

Dear iTunes Customer,
Your season pass for Top Gear, Season 22 is now complete. There were fewer episodes in this season than we anticipated at the time of your purchase.

As a result, we have issued you a partial refund in the amount of $7.50. These funds will be applied to your original payment method within five business days.

Regards,

iTunes Support Team
     
The Final Dakar
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Mar 17, 2015, 09:10 AM
 
Nah, that's expected. They cancelled the rest f the season right after the suspension.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 17, 2015, 09:46 AM
 
Got the same, sad.
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Mar 17, 2015, 12:35 PM
 
May and Hammond should quit, then rejoin with Clarkson - do the exact same thing on another network. Enough of this foolishness!
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Mar 17, 2015, 12:52 PM
 
I do tend to fall on the side of letting the marketplace of ideas be the gatekeeper.
     
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Mar 17, 2015, 06:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by osiris View Post
May and Hammond should quit, then rejoin with Clarkson - do the exact same thing on another network. Enough of this foolishness!
They sold the format.
     
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Mar 17, 2015, 06:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
They sold the format.
Format is vague. They could omit one segment and the "format" has changed. Problem solved.
     
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Mar 17, 2015, 08:10 PM
 
I read that Clarkson owns a big stake in the company that makes Top Gear. Last year he earner £1M in presenter salary and £13 or so on top of that.
I'm not sure they have sold the format. Why would they?
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Mar 17, 2015, 10:54 PM
 
To make money. It was sold in 2012 IIRC.

In 2012, BBC Worldwide paid £8.4 million for Clarkson’s stake in a joint venture which had owned the commercial rights to Top Gear. Clarkson had received dividends - £4.86 million in 2012 - as a co-owner of the company, Bedder 6.
Under the terms of the new contract, Clarkson now receives a seven-figure fee from BBC Worldwide and the corporation owns the rights to the Top Gear format, name and intellectual property.
The change will mean the corporation is free to continue the show in the event of his future departure, but questions remain over whether it would be able to sustain comparable interest with a change of presenter.
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 18, 2015, 01:27 AM
 
Check out the hate towards @BBC_TopGear on Twitter, they've essentially stopped tweeting for over a week. On the rare occasion they do say anything they get flooded with "f*** you!" and "bring back Clarkson you assholes!" type replies.
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Mar 18, 2015, 06:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
To make money. It was sold in 2012 IIRC.
Just makes the whole thing suspicious. The BBC would never pay that for the rights to keep the show in the event that Clarkson left because it won't work without him. They would only have bought the rights to license the US, Australia and whatever other versions they licensed.

Would you swap £4-5m a year (with the potential to skyrocket due to licensing deals) for two years salary?

That deal only makes sense for the BBC if they were planning to sack him (or preparing to be able to). It doesn't make a lot of sense for Clarkson at all IMO.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
osiris
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Mar 18, 2015, 09:13 AM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
They sold the format.
Well, they can change the order of things, add something new, and be on with it.
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Mar 18, 2015, 09:14 AM
 
I guess that would involve an assessment of the "7-figure fee from BBC Worldwide", wouldn't it?
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Mar 18, 2015, 09:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by osiris View Post
Well, they can change the order of things, add something new, and be on with it.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that it's likely not that simple.
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Mar 18, 2015, 09:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that it's likely not that simple.
Perhaps not that simple, but the idea of 3 guys testing cars in a variety of locations is not an owned concept.
The only exception is the Reasonably Priced car/Stig bit would have to go, obviously. They would have to come up with something new and exciting to match.
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Mar 19, 2015, 04:38 PM
 
The petition is getting closer to one million, please show your support for this asshat, I mean, crazy guy named Clarkson!

https://www.change.org/p/bbc-reinsta...7XG0ui0Xj9xt8g
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Mar 19, 2015, 07:02 PM
 
Here's what I've heard: since his divorce he's been off the rails in more whats than one. This latest incident might have just been what broke the camel's back.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 10:34 AM
 
Verdict is in, and Clarkson is out. It appears that he punched said producer, who then had to go to A&E (ER on for those on the other side of the Atlantic) with a fat lip. In light of this and the fact that his contract is up, the BBC has elected not to renew it.

Jeremy Clarkson dropped from Top Gear, BBC confirms - BBC News
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The Final Dakar
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Mar 25, 2015, 10:36 AM
 
Will someone defend punching a guy over lunch? Let's wait and see!
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 10:44 AM
 
There is other stuff to watch that DOESN'T involve the BBC.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Will someone defend punching a guy over lunch? Let's wait and see!
I'm not defending him but why did the producer have to visit the ER for a fat lip?

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The Final Dakar
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by Stogieman View Post
I'm not defending him but why did the producer have to visit the ER for a fat lip?
Work regulations, I imagine.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:43 AM
 
It's dead, Jim.
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:51 AM
 
Maybe he could host a nighttime TV show?
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Will someone defend punching a guy over lunch? Let's wait and see!
I won't defend the punch, but that's what lawsuits are for. Clarkson has money, the guy is probably due some compensation and the BBC can levy a fine against Jezza. Why should all of TG fandom be put out over a fat lip, not to mention losing the most valuable property you own? All 3 presenters will happily move over to Sky or CBS (Showtime), for even more money, the only big loser here is the BBC.
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Mar 25, 2015, 11:56 AM
 
Originally Posted by BadKosh View Post
Maybe he could host a nighttime TV show?
I'm sure he'll get tons of offers for continuing Top Gear under a different name with the existing crew — if that's what Clarkson wants to do.
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
Why should all of TG fandom be put out over a fat lip, not to mention losing the most valuable property you own? All 3 presenters will happily move over to Sky or CBS (Showtime), for even more money, the only big loser here is the BBC.
Because the BBC has to show that its big personalities are not above the law. The Jimmy Saville case has left scars. It should also be noted that Clarkson had a yellow card, as it were.

I also wonder over Clarkson's response to all of this. If he wanted to stay, he should have got out in front of it, admitted the punch and apologized. Instead he denied the punch and stayed silent. Given how Top Gear apparently had a horrible year 2014, maybe he had just had enough.
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subego
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:27 PM
 
I heard he reported himself.
     
P
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:40 PM
 
That he did.

James May seems extremely reluctant to do any more Top Gear. Updated his Twitter profile to "former TV presenter", says the three presenters are a package, and jokes about rushing off to eBay his Ferrari. He doesn't rule anything out, but he is clearly not happy with the BBC.
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
James May seems extremely reluctant to do any more Top Gear. Updated his Twitter profile to "former TV presenter", says the three presenters are a package, and jokes about rushing off to eBay his Ferrari. He doesn't rule anything out, but he is clearly not happy with the BBC.
They are a trio, you can't remove one and replace him with someone else — especially Clarkson.
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subego
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:49 PM
 
Also, doesn't framing this in terms of Saville blowback make the BBC look worse?

I feel this will end up as the UK equivalent of Bill Maher and his 9/11 commentary.

Are we going to look at this in a decade and note the only head which rolled over Saville, et. al. is Jeremy frigging Clarkson?
     
Cap'n Tightpants  (op)
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Mar 25, 2015, 12:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
Because the BBC has to show that its big personalities are not above the law. The Jimmy Saville case has left scars. It should also be noted that Clarkson had a yellow card, as it were.

I also wonder over Clarkson's response to all of this. If he wanted to stay, he should have got out in front of it, admitted the punch and apologized. Instead he denied the punch and stayed silent. Given how Top Gear apparently had a horrible year 2014, maybe he had just had enough.
He didn't deny anything, he went and reported himself. He wasn't silent either, he made several statements and comments after the fact, he just wasn't out begging forgiveness. As for being "above the law", I didn't say he was, but it's the BBC that will be severely pinched financially, not Clarkson. There are many ways to chastise without cutting off their main source of revenue.
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
As for being "above the law", I didn't say he was, but it's the BBC that will be severely pinched financially, not Clarkson. There are many ways to chastise without cutting off their main source of revenue.
That's a economic argument, not a moral one.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:18 PM
 
It sounds like the BBC wants to replace Clarkson and is willing to pay well to make that happen, but that at least May is reluctant to be part of it.

And this is where they are in a bind. The sane way to get something good out of it is to make a new team of presenters and probably producers too and relaunch. The show has gone stale and was about due for that anyway. Now that Clarkson has left under these circumstances, whoever does it will have "killed Top Gear", and the new format is likely to fail. If May really cannot be convinced to stay, I think there will be many big checks waved in front of Hammond to have him included in a new team of presenters and provide something of a smooth transition.
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:21 PM
 
I'm not sure I trust the supposed morality of corporations or media conglomerates. Everything is ultimately financial.
     
The Final Dakar
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by Jawbone54 View Post
I'm not sure I trust the supposed morality of corporations or media conglomerates. Everything is ultimately financial.
That's ultimately correct. However, chastising them for not making the economic decision in a ethical matter seems retarded.

From reading on another forum, it just seems like people are so attached to Top Gear that they've entered a bit of an ends justify the means scenario to keep int on the air.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
That's a economic argument, not a moral one.
They're a business as well as a gov't entity, they ignore economics to their own peril. This decision cuts into their ability to fund a very broad range of future content, including projects that aren't about middle-aged men driving expensive cars. While it's lovely to sit back and feel like you're dispensing justice to an individual you disagree with, their viewership as a whole are the ones being punished the most.
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
That's ultimately correct. However, chastising them for not making the economic decision in a ethical matter seems retarded.
I agree with their decision to can him. I'm far from the overly sensitive hyper-PC type, but he's ventured far into the tasteless and abusive too many times.

I just think they know at some point they're going to get hammered.

From reading on another forum, it just seems like people are so attached to Top Gear that they've entered a bit of an ends justify the means scenario to keep int on the air.
No doubt about it.

However, this might be a blessing in disguise. Otherwise we'd be watching the Top Gear equivalent of this:

 
     
The Final Dakar
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Mar 25, 2015, 01:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
They're a business as well as a gov't entity, they ignore economics to their own peril. This decision cuts into their ability to fund a very broad range of future content, including projects that aren't about middle-aged men driving expensive cars.
Like I said, ends justify the means.

Originally Posted by Cap'n Tightpants View Post
While it's lovely to sit back and feel like you're dispensing justice to an individual you disagree with, their viewership as a whole are the ones being punished the most.
Their viewership doesn't factor into the right or wrong of the action.
     
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Mar 25, 2015, 03:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I feel this will end up as the UK equivalent of Bill Maher and his 9/11 commentary.
Please. Maher was sacked for an unpopular opinion, Clarkson lost his job because he punched a co-worker — hardly the same thing.
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