The return of Top Gear?

So, Top Gear returned to our screens tonight for the start of the eighteenth (indeed, 18th!) series.

I have to admit I didn’t even realise it was on. Having watched Clarkson, Hammond and May dissolve into cliches of themselves over the past nine years, Top Gear has recently been something to tolerate not enjoy. It wasn’t until it started trending on twitter that I noticed it was back.

After the sheer hideousness which was the Indian Christmas Special, my expectations were low. But tonight’s episode displayed a faint glimmer of what could be (or could’ve been) the direction of the show.

Three new supercars, an road trip and an infamous race circuit. This is what real petrolhead TV should be about. Yes there were still some cringe-inducing parts, but nothing which made me want to turn away. Apart from Clarkson interviewing perhaps.

Tonight the cars were the focus. Not staged “comic” set pieces or non-accidental accidents. Nothing exploded, nothing caught fire (bar the Lambo’s exhaust) and James May didn’t shout “oh cock” every five seconds.

The Aventador was the true star for me out of the cars on offer. The drama, the presence, the noise; none of the others matched it. More than anything it was the supercar which has a soul.

The segment before the last session at Imola where the trio talked to the cars; only Clarkson and the Lambo seemed convincing. I’ve had a similar “moment” with an orange Lamborghini also, but that shall wait for another post.

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