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The Grand Tour-Season 2, Episode 1: Media Reactions

They came, they shocked, they offended, and they conquered. That’s right, The Grand Tour is back for a second season! Fans were left laughing at the antics of Jeremy, James, and Richard, but what did the major media publications think of the premiere episode? Let’s take a look.

The Guardian

While I’m sure most fans loved the return of the boys, not everyone thought it was sunshine and daisies. The Guardian’s Sam Wollaston seemed less than impressed with the season’s opening effort, stating “The boys are on the road again, with more of the same old jokes, same old stunts and same old attitudes.

The biggest complaint from Wollaston’s review, whether he’s blatantly calling it out or trying to be more subtle, is Jeremy’s remarks on how only women eat vegetables, and the sophomoric humor throughout the episode.

The Telegraph

The Telegraph’s Tristram Fane Saunders seemed to enjoy the premiere episode, claiming that it could be a sign that6 Jeremy has re-found his “groove.”

“The excesses of the first series have all been neatly pruned; achingly unfunny racing driver The American has been sacked; the weekly Celebrity Braincrash comedy skit has been scrapped by popular demand (as Hammond bluntly admits, “You all hated it”); Clarkson has cut back on his country-of-the-week observational comedy about “the locals”, as the touring studio-tent has given up touring, and is now pitched permanently in a field near his home in the Cotsworlds.”

The Times

If you want to read a review that’s absolutely dripping with sarcasm, then this is the one for you. The Times’ review doesn’t outright say that this was a bad episode, but the feeling of contempt emanating from the page is palpable. Also, there are a number of incorrect names and facts scattered about.

That’s not to say it was all bad, though. Hugo Rifkind’s review ends with possibly one of the most “real” statements about the boys and the show that I have read: “Real men. Weird, mad and pointless, but all the more real because of it. Bantering, perennially, into the void.”

Digital Spy

Here we have perhaps the strongest review for the premiere episode yet. Catherine Pearson states:

“The show feels like it’s finding its feet. While the first season allowed the trio to keep plenty of their quintessential Britishness, the on-the-road format necessitated a lengthy introduction of each new place they visited. Now, we’re back on home turf and the show has recaptured some of that (dare we say it) budget feel.

Supercars and globetrotting aside (Amazon have a mammoth budget), the studio scenes feel more grounded and the presenters appear more laid back as a result. Small tweaks are being made everywhere – and it’s working.”

GQ

Alex Godfrey’s review points out that Season 2 definitely has the glitz and glamour of a big budget show and the boys’ trademark brand of humor still works, but it may be time to try some new things.

“The banter. So much banter. The charisma and chemistry of Clarkson’s crew is undeniable, and there are some laughs, but they are coasting, and it is often witless, and endless. Throughout the show, serviceable jokes are milked, again and again, and the humour often seems like a defiant response to critics.”

There is a good show in here. But it’s a long, baggy hour. Despite all the money, the tech, the gear and the glitz, it feels stuck, beholden to itself. It needs greasening up.”

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Written by Tony Hsieh

Cars, the Buffalo Bills, video games, comics, sandwiches, jelly beans, and the shooting star press; these are the things that Tony loves (in addition to his family, of course). When he's not spending his time writing tech reviews for theslanted.com, Tony puts his lifetime love of muscle cars to use on his 2015 Mustang GT. Tony's top three favorite cars are the 1973 Mustang Mach 1, Ferrari 458, and Aston Martin DBS.

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