The Grand Tour Season 1 had its moments of ups and downs, but none were as polarizing as “The American” Mike Skinner. Created as an alternative to The Stig, The American was the one who took the cars of the week around the test track and set times for the lap time board.
Due to legal restrictions with the BBC, any test driver for The Grand Tour would basically have to be the polar opposite of The Stig. Where The Stig had his face covered, the new driver would have to be seen. Where The Stig was silent, the new driver could not be. I bet even an all-white suit was not allowed.
As a result, we got The American; a loud, brash, opinionated mish-mash of every bad redneck stereotype in the book. When Season 1 wrapped up, it was clear that The American was the one thing that people disliked the most about the show despite the character being a parody of Americans.
As it turns out, The American himself, Mike Skinner, also had his problems with The Grand Tour as he announced early this morning that he will not be joining the boys for Season 2. No further details were given as to the reason why other than a tweet, so we can only speculate.
Perhaps if they just let Skinner be himself, things would have been better?