Yesterday we did some community outreach, asking for fan feedback on what The Grand Tour could do differently. There’s been a lot of conjecture about the new format losing audience viewership, not just compared to the Top Gear days, but also since the earlier GT days.
Well, now we’ve taken some of the main takeaways from top comments, and we’re going to dig into their criticisms.
1. Too Produced
Facebook user Paul has the top rated comment. His main point is that the show has been “far too contrived,” especially in relation to the scripted segments. This has been a major change for the show’s format. Back in the day, it was far from ordinary to get sucked out of the show by the host’s acting chops.
There were undoubtedly some arranged segments or gags back in Top Gear, but you’d probably not notice most of them. Now, it seems like the camera rolls after a stereotypical shout of “action!” At least the majority of the behind-the-wheel banter still seems unrehearsed.
2. Lack of Challenges
Benjamin makes a good point here. Where the hosts had to build a car to traverse Mongolia, they used to be faced by adversity far more often. While riding boats in “Seamen” came with troubles, they don’t come as frequently as they used to.
The classic relationship of the guys was one fueled more by clunkers, that two out of three mocked, than three nice vehicles which all secretly admire. When the hosts had a very limited budget, and had to live with the harsh terrain before improving their cars, those were golden episodes. The quest for the source of the Nile comes to mind.
3. Too Few Episodes
Ah, Carl Christian Martin Hipenbecker coming in with the real talk. TOO FEW EPISODES.
We all feel this one. The move away from the classic Top Gear format, and even the early Grand Tour setup, now means way less content per year. Furthermore, it’s more sporadic, with each episode dropping whenever they decide it’s finished.
There are some obvious pros and cons to more epic traveling, but as Carl says, they can “make the specials 2 parts to make more than 2 episodes a whole season.” Maybe that would keep fans from cancelling their Amazon Prime accounts, since it’s hard to justify a whole year’s worth of fees for three hours of content.
4. Too Many Cooks
Erin gets extra credit for being very wholesome and supportive. We all sometimes forget why we love the Grand Tour hosts in the first place, their chemistry. When they’ve gotten us addicted to their fun-loving ways and antics in the past, it’s hard to not expect more of the same.
With change comes pains, and we can get carried away with our own back-seat driving. Yes, it would be nice if the guys could have their tent or old coffee table back.
Either way, we’ll get what we can take, and if at the end of the day, regardless of any changes… we’ll still check out anything Jeremy, James, and Richard release.