If More Is Better

Posted on November 22, 2010


If more is better, too much must be just enough – Carroll Shelby (1923 – ), American car designer

One day I turned on BBC America in preparation for whatever mystery series they were showing on Monday nights. I was early, but I often set a channel for something that I want to watch and then go off and do something else – like the dishes, or making dinner. On BBCA was a show about cars. Now, I am not a gear-head. Shows about cars rarely work for me. This one, though, was exciting, glamorous, and often silly. It was Top Gear.

The next Monday, I apologized to my lovely wife, and told her that I wanted to watch another episode of Top Gear. If she would bear with me, we would get through it and then we could watch our British mystery series du jour. She loved it. The interaction between the hosts was fast and funny. The stunts were outrageous, starting out in all earnestness and then going hilariously wrong. We proceeded to watch every episode BBCA could provide, and preferred repeats of Top Gear to many other TV offerings.

So, frankly, I had mixed feelings about an American version of Top Gear. On the one hand, I want more. Seasons of Top Gear are too short to suit me, so I always want to watch more of it. An American version would give me more. Plus, it was going to be on our History Channel. I like History Channel. The show seemed an odd fit, but I was willing to hold out faith. On the other hand, very few American translations of British television are worth watching – The Office being a notable exception.

Well, last night was the premier episode. It’s not that great. Rumor says that there’s great improvement by episode 3. We’ll see.

Posted in: television