As a fan of the UK's Top Gear and an altar boy for the Church of Jeremy Clarkson, I was mortified when rumors of an American version of Top Gear pulled out of the garage. Names like Jay Leno and Adam Carolla were bandied about as potential hosts, further cementing my poo-pooing of it (I like Carolla in small doses, but didn't see him as a good fit for Top Gear).
Eventually History Channel took the plunge and got the rights, making this potential nightmare a reality. And when I saw that the network released a trailer for their version of Top Gear, complete with hosts I had never heard of, I thought it would be a good opportunity to tear it a new exhaust pipe. But lo and behold, I found myself thinking, "This looks... alright."
Now don't get me wrong, I still don't think it has the chops to even come close to the UK version (which is near perfect), but it's a heck of a lot better-looking than I thought it would be. Plus, and most importantly, it appears to capture the spirit of Top Gear (though I'm not discounting the fact that because my expectations were so low, anything above a complete wreck would look good).
Judge for yourself:
One suggestion: Secure your in-car cameras better and don't put two of your hosts in black-and-white plaid shirts. Hurts my eyes, dude!
Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom