By on July 17, 2011

Have you caught The Car Show yet? If not, the first episode is currently streaming at Hulu, so go ahead and waste part of your Sunday on a show that offers (according to Matt Farah) “everything you’re looking for from a proper British motoring show, but from a uniquely American perspective.” Having peeped the first episode myself, I’ve got some seriously mixed feelings…

On the one hand, it’s got a more freewheeling, diverse feel than Top Gear America. On the other hand, like TG:A, it’s still got some serious chemistry issues to work out. Whereas the quintessential “proper British motoring show” gels totally different personalities into a whole that’s greater than the sum of its parts, The Car Show’s presenters don’t seem like they actually like each other yet, and seem too self-conscious for what should be a laid-back show. Carolla, Neil and Farah have a lot of potential as odd-couple representatives of car guy diversity (I still don’t know what Salley is on hand for), but all three still seem too caught up in looking funny, smart and cool respectively. They need to remember that a huge part of Top Gear’s appeal is that the hosts have perspective on the characters they are playing, which allows them to relax and have fun with their dramatis personae (Neil comes the closest to this in the “game show” segment, but it’s still hard to tell how much fun he’s having with his egghead car-nerd character). Also, I would have saved a LeMons episode for a later date, when the chemistry had congealed a bit better.

Otherwise, The Car Show seems to be America’s best answer to Top Gear to date, and I do think that it has the potential to be downright entertaining once its presenters develops some confidence and comfort with their characters (and perhaps make a few tweaks to segments like 0-60). But you may have a different perspective? Go ahead and let us (and, I’m guessing at least a few people involved with the show who read TTAC) know what you would do to make The Car Show a “proper motoring program” that America can be proud of.

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67 Comments on “Ask The Best And Brightest: What Advice Would You Give “The Car Show”?...”


  • avatar
    Jack Baruth

    Fire Carolla, shoot Neil in the face, preferably before the camera, let Farah and Salley run the show.

    • 0 avatar
      MikeAR

      I’d buy the seaon on DVD to see Neil get what he needs.

      • 0 avatar
        Dr Lemming

        If you were stuck on a deserted island you’d shoot the only person in the party with any brains. Good luck with that.

      • 0 avatar
        MikeAR

        Lemming, does journalism school make someone smart? Neil is the least accomplished of the cast. Everyone else has done something or made something of themselves. All Neil has done is write about other peoples’ accomplishments, he’s never really done anything except be smug. He’s not smart, if he was he would keep his politics out of his stuff and not act like he thinks he is better than everyone else. In short, you have a very limited view of intelligence. Sharing your politics isn’t intelligence.

        Oh, another thing, Neil is a really classy guy. I think it was the Detroit News that fired him. He wrote in a review of some car about having sex with his girlfriend in the car. Now sex in a car isn’t awful but bragging about it in a newspaper isn’t very smart. In short, Neil is a pig with an unwarranted superiority complex.

    • 0 avatar
      V572625694

      Why the hate for Dan Neil? Is there a better auto writer in the US?

      Viz: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703989304575503893887298292.html

      • 0 avatar
        MikeAR

        Simple, he sucks on camera. He comes across as smug and a jerk. You’re right he is a decent writer but he needs to be likeable on tv and he just isn’t.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        Neil’s kind of a smug jerk in print, too.

      • 0 avatar
        bodayguy

        I suspect his perceived smugness on camera is why Top Gear let him go. However, I really liked him on the Rolls Royce feature and I think in instances like that where they can edit him, he is good.

        Actually, I liked all four hosts I just think they need to loosen up and not try so hard to be specific characters.

    • 0 avatar
      stryker1

      This.

    • 0 avatar
      Doc

      I have not had a chance to watch this yet. I recorded it and will be watching in the next couple of nights. I am a fan of Adam Carolla. I listen to his podcast every day but he is sometimes shockingly clueless on matters automotive. Shocking for someone who seems to be a genuine car nut.

      Unfortunately, not knowing anything about a subject does not seem to stop him from discussing it. For example, I heard him discussing the inline 6 engine in the Nissan 370Z a few weeks ago with a caller who was considering buying one.

      He seems to pride himself on doing as little preparation as possible but having a near photographic memory can make him sound knowledgeable at times.

      That being said, I think that people either love him or hate him. I do not hear too much in between.

      • 0 avatar
        Scott.A

        I listened to that podcast and cringed when he said that while thinking “The bimmer is the one with the inline six” but he’s the best part of the show.

  • avatar
    WRohrl

    This doesn’t exactly answer your question, but taking Dan Neil and moving him to TopGear US to replace Tanner Foust would go a long way toward making that show (TGUS) better…
    Carolla does OK here, Farah was fine, Neil was good, Salley I agree with you not sure what the point is so far. Then again, it’s only been one episode, it can really only get better from here, I didn’t notice anything that “absolutely did not work”. Was it great? No. Was it a worthwhile use of an hour of my time? Not yet. Will I be back? If it’s on the TiVo and I have nothing else to do, sure.

  • avatar
    MikeAR

    My advice, simple, ditch Dan Neil. He is awful on camera, a smug self-worshipping prick. John Salley has nothing to do now except be the token minority but he’s so much more decent and likeable than Neil that he ought to stay and be given more to do. Carolla and Farah are aquired tastes but they’ll get better with time. The first show wasn’t very good but I’m sure it will get better as time goes by. But Neil, a good writer, just makes me cringe when I see him. Out of the seven hosts of our versions of Top Gear, he is the only one I’ll not be able to get used to. Heck, by the end of the first season, I even liked Rutledge Woods.

  • avatar

    Shows that try too hard to be funny are typically unfunny: The Car Show proves this to be an irrefutable fact. Adam Carolla has a little trouble shaking that aging frat boy persona that he perfected on The Man Show. I would replace Carolla with driver Ken Schrader, a guy with a very subtle natural sense of comedy.

  • avatar
    Robert.Walter

    Haven’t watched the show … no Hula here in Europe… but from the banner pic, it reminds me of The View ……………………………………………………………… sorry, just saying that made me retch a few times … so if this show is something like The View ………. (pant, pant) of auto shows, then I don’t think I’m missing much…

  • avatar
    MBella

    I agree with the above that Dan Nail is a smug prick, however I think that works well though for what they are trying to do. It works well to have a less than likable almost villain type character.I also agree with Ed saying that this is a better American interpretation of Top Gear than the History Channel version. I also think since they aren’t tied down with being Top Gear America, they will be able to find their own groove, rather than try to rip off the British show. I gave up on TGA after the second episode. I don’t see that happening here.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    I watch Top Gear, Fifth Gear, and even all of the web videos that Autocar, Auto Express, and EVO put on youtube. I like watching car videos, and I turned it off about five minutes into the LeMons segment. It was one of the most boring snoozefests I’ve ever seen on TV. I don’t think it could fit anywhere else but on Speed, the channel for unwatchable dreck with a metric ton of commercials.

    The only thing I can think of that’s worse were those Speed Channel “test drive” shows were they had race car drivers sit in the back of a Lexus GS450h and talk about what an awesome handling machine it is “greatest car ever, right guys?” as it rolled around a track at 40mph.

    That, and maybe the first two seasons of Top Gear Australia which were also unwatchable.

  • avatar

    I’ve said it before, put Baruth on camera with an attractive woman who knows cars and the show would be a success. Hell, put Baruth on camera with Vodka McBB and it might be an even bigger success.

    Paul and Anita Leinart (sp?) used to have a He Said She Said weekly car review in one of the Detroit dailies.

    I think one shortcoming that most car shows and car sites have is that they don’t have many (any?) female voices. I’ve been trying to get women writers on the team at Cars In Depth and it’s been a struggle.

    • 0 avatar
      Davekaybsc

      Get Baruth and Vicky from Fifth Gear together for a show. That would be entertaining.

    • 0 avatar
      JJ

      I don’t know if it would work. I’ve checked out some of the vids he did on NAIAS for another car site (there was a plug here on TTAC) and it was ok but very matter-of-factly. Not as good as the written material.

      It’s just a difficult thing a car show on (live) TV. Here in the Netherlands they’ve tried it a couple of times as well with presenters ranging from car journalists, other journalists, has-been actresses, race car drivers, female race car drivers etc. All of these shows crash and burn in no time, even if you think it could actually work. What survives is the hopeless 30 minutes ‘commercial shows’ where every car is just great or at least great value and where some clothing companies chip in for some extra sponsoring.

      I guess there aren’t that many people who are credible as car guys (or girls), have a good sense of humor and can them deliver that credibility and humor within a scripted show without the show feeling overly or annoyingly scripted.

      And then there’s the tiny matter of always being compared with TopGear…And let’s be honest, even TopGear (yes, UK as well) itself has been known to fall short of that benchmark on occassion.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      I would be terrible in a show like this. I’m terrible on camera. I do the LeftLane videos because the producers, who are two nice guys, don’t like doing single-take stuff and I work cheap. We’re not under any impression that we are making automotive history :)

      A guy like Matt Farah has a hundred times more on-camera charisma than I do, which is why he’s doing that and I’m doing what I love — abusing cars, women, and my own emotional well-being in the e-pages of TTAC.

      • 0 avatar
        Flipper35

        I bet you could tell the difference between a rebodied 240Z and a real Ferrari though. That’s where Mr Farah lost credibility with me. Haven’t watched him since. Though I did try to watch this show I didn’t make it 5 minutes before I lost interest.

  • avatar

    Dying is easy. Comedy is hard.

    Adam Carolla is naturally funny and if you watch his web show, or listen to him on the radio, he’s got great comedic chops. On a scripted show, though, he might be constrained.

    I don’t know if they’re still running it, but Neil had a show on tv that I caught a couple of times and I thought it wasn’t terrible. I’ve seen Neil talk and work a press conference in person and he can be personable, if a tad too snarky.

    Farah knows his stuff. I’m from Detroit so I’ve always like John Salley (actually, if you check out my review of the Jaguar XF Supercharged, one of the photos was taken in front of the house Salley lived in when he played for the Pistons), but he’s got no creds as a car guy.

    On paper the show could work, but right now it has more of put together feel to it than natural comedy and car talk.

  • avatar
    JJ

    Since I’m from Europe, I had never heard of Neal nor Salley and I thought Adam Carolla had something to do with MTV.

    I have seen some reviews by Matt Farah on garage419 and thought they were quite good sometimes, he comes off as a bit of a douche but in a good way. Judging by this trailer though, Carolla comes off like a douche in a bad way. As I haven’t seen more of the show I’ll hold judgement on the others, although that judgement may never come since I just noticed finalgear won’t be covering the show for now.

  • avatar
    MrGreenMan

    I was confused why they didn’t put Alonzo Bodden on the show, since he was funny and engaging in the 101 Cars You Must Drive, which was aired on Speed, and this is supposed to be funny and engaging, right? I guess that, with Rutledge Wood off on TG:USA, Speed doesn’t really “own” its talent.

    Programming TV is, of course, a bind: Try to hit the range of people you think will watch the show, and then get people to say — wow, pander much? who didn’t expect one gay guy and one black guy? — or don’t and have people say — wow, you didn’t think of having any diversity on the show?

    Edit: Clearly, pull Salley and the guy with the too-pretty hair. Replace them with some Speed talent: Alonzo Bodden and Dave Despain. Can’t you imagine Dave Despain losing it on Corolla and turning it into a Three Stooges’ show? “What are you doing, chucklehead? This is serious business. You could get us all killed. Give me the wheel!”

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    Dan Neil is not qualified to write about cars. He isn’t even qualified to breathe my air. Here’s what he said when he included the 1909 Ford Model T in a list of the 50 worst cars of all time for Time magazine:

    “Uh-oh. Here comes trouble. Let’s stipulate that the Model T did everything that the history books say: It put America on wheels, supercharged the nation’s economy and transformed the landscape in ways unimagined when the first Tin Lizzy rolled out of the factory. Well, that’s just the problem, isn’t it? The Model T — whose mass production technique was the work of engineer William C. Klann, who had visited a slaughterhouse’s “disassembly line” — conferred to Americans the notion of automobility as something akin to natural law, a right endowed by our Creator. A century later, the consequences of putting every living soul on gas-powered wheels are piling up, from the air over our cities to the sand under our soldiers’ boots. And by the way, with its blacksmithed body panels and crude instruments, the Model T was a piece of junk, the Yugo of its day.”

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1658545_1657686_1657663,00.html #ixzz1SO8sxjBU

    What did he reveal in this one piece of ignorance? He exposed himself as oblivious to the way the automobile raised the standard of living in this country. He outed himself as a typical elitist progressive villain by decrying the democratization of automobile availability. For Neil, it is a shame the automobile didn’t remain a privilege of the rich. Last but not least, he demonstrated that he doesn’t have the most elementary level of knowledge about cars. What sort of imbeciles pay a man to write about cars who spreads pure fiction like the Model-T being a piece of junk, ‘the Yugo of its day?’ It was probably the most dependable car in the world at the time; more like the Honda Accord of its day.

    • 0 avatar

      I’m not a big fan of Henry Ford’s but I defy Dan Neil to take a stroll past the cars on display (including other makes than Ford) at the Piquette Ave Model T factory in Detroit and still say that the Model T was a piece of junk. Was it made cheaper than other cars then, undoubtedly, but Ford was trying to make a mass market product, which hardly anyone else was trying to do. Is the 1914 Dodge a better car than the T? Unquestionably. One reason why the Dodge brothers decided to compete with Ford instead of supplying him with rolling chassis and major components is that Horace and John Dodge were better engineers and inventors than Henry was. Still, and yes, some of them are restored to the Nth degree but the early Ts there, the ’09 there and other pre war (WWI that is) Model Ts do not have body panels that look like they were “blacksmithed”. Was the T crude? Sure. But if it was the Yugo of its day, it would have sold well for a year and then nosedived as people realized it was junk. Instead the T went on to sell something like 14 million units.

      Frankly, I though that Neil’s list of the worst cars of all times was not very thoughtful and deliberately contrarian.

      • 0 avatar
        Robert.Walter

        Obviously, any two things can be compared … but some comparisons are much more complex than others … like comparing a T to a modern day car … even so, it is still hard to compare an early T with a later Dodge … given the pace of change in the industry, 5 years was a loooong time.

      • 0 avatar
        ciddyguy

        You bring up a good point, I’ve seen books on the worst cars and I find it rather arbitrarian as well.

        That being said, there ARE some cars that have truly earned the title of worst car ever made but some that have been put on this list have not as much.

        I think in one book I saw years ago was the Nash Metropolitan and it wasn’t the worst car out there but was a decent enough small car back when it was in production in mostly the mid to late 1950’s.

        And some of these cars are small cars and we all know that they are some of the most difficult cars to design well.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      What did he reveal in this one piece of ignorance? He exposed himself as oblivious to the way the automobile raised the standard of living in this country.

      He was reviewing the car as a car. And by today’s standards, he’s right.

      The mass production method that Ford invented and that everyone copied until Toyota introduced lean production was inherently flawed. Ford had thought that he had solved the quality problem inherent to craft production just by making the parts interchangeable, but the early T’s proved to be so bad that QC was added at the end of the line when they realized that interchangeable parts weren’t enough to ensure that it worked properly.

      Neil is missing the point, though. The T wasn’t meant to be reliable in the modern sense, but something more similar to a horse-drawn wagon — easy and cheap to fix. It was designed so that a rural farmer could drive it on rutted trails or paved streets as needed, and then use some simple tools to repair it, or even make his own fuel if he had to.

      They didn’t yet have the notion in their heads that a car could be set-it-and-forget-it reliable; they built it assuming that it would break often, and the entire car reflected that. The T was designed to work during a very different time, but regardless, the production method paved the way for Toyota to come later and improve the entire process.

      • 0 avatar
        MikeAR

        Pch, in short you are saying that Neil is a car writer who either doesn’r know or care much about cars and their history. CJ is right.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        Pch, in short you are saying that Neil is a car writer who either doesn’r know or care much aout cars and their history.

        No, I’m saying that he’s using the wrong benchmarks when judging the T. He’s much better with cars built in 2011 than he is with cars built in 1911. He’s one of the better automotive writers working today.

    • 0 avatar
      FromaBuick6

      Neil’s a journalist, not a car guy. He needed a way to ply his trade and vent his worldview/ego, and the auto industry was the most expedient venue for him. And it really shows in his writing. Total elitist, and that quote tells you everything Neil thinks about the auto industry and America: Cars are a blight and he’s ashamed of our success over the last century. Of course, for Dan to wear expensive-but-hideously-coordinated clothes and drive expensive cars on someone else’s dime is perfectly acceptable.

      So I dislike him for the same reason I dislike nearly all establishment journalists. They’re narcissists with a chip on their shoulder about the American experience, because of (or in spite of?) their ignorant detachment from the way most people in this country actually live.

      • 0 avatar
        ihatetrees

        …I dislike him for the same reason I dislike nearly all establishment journalists…

        Like most established journalists, Neil has the economic literacy of a sponge.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    Just do whatever Top Gear doesn’t. Problem I have with Top Gear UK is it’s too neat. Reviews are scripted, banter seems staged and they drift hi dollar exotics too darn good to be believable all while having a leisure conversation. Top Gear is a show for everyone but insults car guys.

  • avatar
    Philosophil

    A lot of hot air, staged camp, and over-inflated, exaggerated ‘fun.’ If you like it, that’s fine, but this kind of in-your-face infotainment is definitely not my cup of tea.

    Thanks, but no thanks.

    Good luck.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      Agreed. Most of these car shows are just awful. I’ll happily read about cars, but something gets lost when they’re up on a screen.

      The original Top Gear is generally an exception, but it’s usually a lot more clever than the few minutes that I could stomach of this. The Sports Center look and vibe here doesn’t help.

      The Top Gear formula is more about cheeky dialogue and out-of-left-field set ups than it is about cars per se, which oddly enough, seems to make for better television. (The great effort to destroy a Toyota pickup was particularly entertaining.)

  • avatar
    Wagon Of Fury

    Salley really has nothing to do, and the show walks a thin line between having nothing for him to do vs. acknowledging him as both a neophyte and (ahem) black (three jokes that I caught). The Game Show segment is weak. I didn’t think Dan Neil was as grating as some of the others here :shrug:

  • avatar
    jimmyy

    Before the Obama administration, auto sales were driven by the best product at a given price. However, this resulted in Detroit going bankrupt because they are burdened with a bunch of union bills which left them cash starved for product investment. The bottom line is Detroit products are inferior relative to Asian products.

    Now, auto sales have an ugly political component where the government is practicing protectionism with Toyota recalls, fuel mileage regulations, tax loop holes, and below market government funding. Even the media carries the water for the Obama administration. Just note how little airplay the media gave to Toyota when the government could not find any problems with their excellent products, not to mention how the media totally ignored Ford’s recent historic collapse in JD Powers quality rankings.

    What needs to happen is this show needs to get back to the product and away from the politics. If the makers of the car show have courage, they should expose the ugly politics introduced by the Obama administration. Detroit needs to make the best products. At this time, all Detroit has managed is the best politics.

  • avatar

    What advice would I give? I’m not qualified to tell TV people how to do their jobs.

    As for what I can do? Give it time and hopefully it will become better.

  • avatar

    I thought this first episode was worse than the first episode of TG:A. My recommendations?
    1. Fire Adam Carolla because he’s not funny in this show. I consider myself a fan of his, but he was awful and tacky in this show.
    2. Fire John Salley because he brings almost nothing to a car show. Sure, he’s the American Captain Slow, but at least James May puts up a fight when all Salley did was laugh hysterically at every attempt at humor, particularly those as his expense.
    3. Give the show to Matt and Dan and bring somebody funny in. If they really want to mix it up, bring in a woman (not Danica Patrick) with car cred and a sense of humor.
    I’ll try it again, because I want to give it time, but this was not a good start. And because there’s not much else out there.

  • avatar
    Rod Panhard

    My advice to Mr. Carolla and company…you guys need to rehearse more. You wouldn’t have given Mr. Salley the job if he didn’t have banter skills. He’s just not used to talking cars in front of a camera. That’s a different situation.

    Mr. Neil is supposed to be smug and obnoxious, just like Mr. Clarkson.

    I don’t know the credentials of the other guy. That’s okay. I’m not supposed to. He’s supposed to appeal to the 20-30 something fanboys.

    But overall, rehearse. Build up some camraderie. Then come back and see us. As it is, the show isn’t ready for primetime.

    • 0 avatar
      Rob

      Rod, agree completely. I have no problem with “free wheeling” however the first episode looked like everyone was winging it. I particularly hated the 0-60 segment when everyone was talking over each other. It reminded me of the View. Whenever there is a panel discussion on T.V. on any topic there should be an iron-clad rule of no interruptions.

  • avatar
    441Zuke

    I thought the show was ok. the material sucked i think le-mons should have been done later. the humor was forced on the first episode but some of the ideas they have set up for the later episode sound interesting. I know their is an upcoming episode where they carolla does a challenge to see if he can beat an elderly women, a teenager and a women around a road coarse at fontana while he is drunk. Also Carolla won’t be leaving he is the executive producer.

  • avatar
    Steven Lang

    I did a TV Pilot a couple of years ago tentatively called, “Car Sharks”.

    The work is challenging for a very long list of reasons. First off, you always feel the need to ‘perform’. That is to be something that is not the real you.

    Second, to even expect the chemistry to mold by the first episode’s conclusion is not realistic. Yes that first episode may have been filmed tenth or twelfth in the order. But it really takes time to have multiple Alpha oriented personalities gel in this setting.

    Finally, and curse me for saying it, I think they have one too many people. When you have too many people who are too inexperienced with each other, you never know when one person should jump in and the others jump out. What you end up with is a heavily structured show that only has flow when some bizarre turn of events takes place.

    ‘The Car Show’ will have to be it’s own creation. Copying elements from other shows (radio or TV) will cause the show to rot on the vines of imitation.

    Oh, and Dan Neil deserves a shot. Good luck to them all. I can personally attest to the challenge of making shows like this work.

  • avatar
    rpn453

    I don’t think I’ll watch it again. There was no serious discussion or car reviews, they seemed awkward as a group, and a lot of it was silly.

    They weren’t even enthused to be able to race in Lemons without having to put any effort in. Twice they mentioned that there was no airbag on the Lemons car, as though they’d either prefer airbags to a proper racing harness or simply didn’t understand what a five-point belt is. They didn’t show any good driving clips of them racing, and Salley didn’t appear to know how to drive anyway.

    The 1-mile Porsche drag was just a Porsche promo in the form of a simple test of the car’s acceleration and Matt tried far too hard to pretend that there was some point in setting personal goals for how fast the car would go.

    I didn’t even bother watching the entire Rolls Royce advertisement at the end.

  • avatar
    jnik

    I TiVo’ed it, watched the first 10 minutes, then quit. Maybe I’ll watch again when (if) they test a car I care about.

  • avatar
    GiddyHitch

    Top Gear has done what, 15 or 16 series since it was reformatted? Not to mention that Clarkson (save a stint trying to make a go of movies or whatnot) and company have literally been doing that show for almost 25 years. That’s a lot of time to develop chemistry, find your voice, smooth out rough spots, switch out presenters, etc. If one were to go back (or BT) to 1988 or 2002 to watch the first episode from Top Gear mk1 or Top Gear mk2, how many of the same criticisms listed above would apply to those episodes as well? Even new Top Gear isn’t as good as old Top Gear (circa non-destruction of a Hilux).

    That being said, I’m a Carolla fan so I’m pulling for this to work out for him. He’s got a sharp wit and he’s a great storyteller, but his talents don’t always translate well to the screen (see his eponymous talk show). He does know funny, but as he has stated on his podcast, editors and producers usually don’t and they are ultimately the ones deciding what airs in the final product. My advice:

    * Rework the scripts because the in-studio segments seriously drag
    * More cars, less talking heads
    * Rip off TG’s cinematography/audio/editing style for the car review segments because you’re not going to top it
    * Ditch the game show segment and either improve the quality of the Zero to 60 graphics or ditch them altogether
    * Give them a full season to build up the on-camera chemistry, loosen up, and iron out the kinks

    I was not very hopeful about the prospects of this show overall until I saw the Rolls segment. The interplay between Carolla and Neil was entertaining, even if it was a bit forced, and the pace, visuals, etc. all played to good effect. The in-studio wrap-up wasn’t even that bad, though there were one too many hosts as someone mentioned above.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    My advice for “The Car Show” is, if at all possible, avoid NASCAR like the plague. I understand Fox Sports WAY overpaid for the NASCAR rights but not every show on SPEED has to contain NASCAR elements. I watched the show with my “this is their first show, they’ll get better as the season progresses” filter on, but as soon as they started talking to Jimmie Johnson, the blandest driver in NASCAR, I bailed out. I just don’t care.

    My advice for certain people who replied to this thread is, lighten up on the politics. The same one-trick ponies can’t help themselves but deride anything the don’t like or don’t agree with as “liberal elitist”. And I don’t even know how Obama comes up. What does any of that have to do with The Car Show or this thread?

  • avatar
    stryker1

    Ok. just watched it. Man that show is rough. They keep repeating jokes. Also, they demonstrate, twice, why you need to um… “help along” the challenge segments with some little white lies and TV magic. because otherwise they just sort of go nowhere. Why would you arrange a race with a plane that is so one sided? At least a little creative editing would have made it somewhat more suspenseful.

  • avatar
    Canuck129

    A longer trivia segment…

  • avatar
    70Cougar

    I wanted to like The Car Show. I read TTAC every day. I’ve liked Adam Carolla since he was on Love Line. I even watched his home renovation show. I had to turn off The Car Show before it ended. Maybe it will be okay once the develop some chemistry and figure out what kind of car stuff makes for good TV. However, the “Corvettes have a crappy interior” style jokes are inexplicably funny in print but painful on TV. The car-racing-a-plane stunt was a stupid idea and boring to watch. Maybe I’ll check back in a few weeks if its still on.

    • 0 avatar
      tankinbeans

      I haven’t watched this because my work computer filters out video and I haven’t had a chance to look at home, but I do know that TG:Uk did a car racing a plane; I believe they were using a Veyron and one of the “Blue Angels”, but I could be mistaken. Does everybody have to ape everybody else?

      Is Top Gear US still on? I only made it through two episodes and couldn’t handle it.

  • avatar
    andyinsdca

    I tried to watch about 5 min of this disaster this afternoon. Adam Carolla was absolutely painful in it. I loved his radio show (5 or so yrs ago), I love his other stuff, but this. WAS. JUST AWFUL.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    You girls need to go back to watching the Hills or Cardashians or Whatever Housewives if you can’t push thru the first episodes as painful as they may be. If TTAC BB can’t support these types of efforts, nobody will.

  • avatar
    james24

    Adam did a good job after the first 5 minutes, getting past that 5 minutes is the tough part. Neil did a good job as well, he brought a useful insight to arguments and even had some humor. Loved how he “adjusted” the side view mirrors on the Lemons cars. Classic. Farah didn’t bring anything new from Smoking Tire. And I didn’t think it was possible to make a GT3 RS boring but he did it. Salley is a nice wonderful man, however has NO place on this show. If any of the producers see this hire me, I am far more qualified for the position. I’m a car nut, a student of design, and literature tudor, so I will know what I’m talking about and know how to say it. Serious Salley has had his shot on TV, and if you have to keep him cause someone told you have to have a African-American on the show then fire Farah.

  • avatar
    Robstar

    Maybe I’m an idiot, but where is the closed/open captioning on this show? I’ve seen CC in Hulu before on the border, but I can’t find it here (possibly an issue with Flash/Linux?) It’s not watchable for me without CC since I’m hard of hearing. Us HIP guys drive too…

    I can’t believe we are in mid-2011 and something as dirt-easy as captioning still isn’t done right.

    Edit: I originally tried the link on Hulu. I also tried the youtube video above (which has a CC button) and it doesn’t seem to do anything on my computer). Did anyone get either video to work?

  • avatar
    Junebug

    Gee, I missed this one, sounds like I lucked out! If it was anything like or worse than Top Gear (US) then whatever I was doing when this came on was much more important.

    I did see something the other night called “Car Science” which included stupid car clips ripped from the Smokin Gun Presents – the World’s Dumbest Drivers. They were funny the first time, and TSG commentators are good. Car Science’s whiny announcer came across as someone I’d love to whack in the face with a ballpeen hammer.

  • avatar
    Jellodyne

    The LeMons segment was sad, and proof that just because you have a lot of money and like to collect cars, it doesn’t necessarily make you a car guy.

    1) What real car guy wouldn’t jump at a chance to jump in a beat up old Z and run some laps on a racetrack with some other drivers? They could barely bring themselves to be seen in it.

    2) They didn’t exactly win the heroic fix award.

    3) Ewww! Someone has OIL on their hands!

    • 0 avatar
      GiddyHitch

      I’m not sure who that first comment is directed at, but Carolla definitely qualifies as a car guy in my eyes – races his BRE Datsuns, hosts a weekly car podcast, took a Sawzall to his Aston Martin’s hood, etc. I definitely agree with you on your three enumerated points though – someone forgot to explain to them the whole concept of LeMons … which should probably start with rule #1: you don’t pay someone else to build your LeMons car.

  • avatar
    gessvt

    I think the chemistry among Carolla, Farah, Salley and Neil is much better than TG USA at the launch. I’ll give it a wait and see. I still like aging frat boy humor, so Carolla’s A-OK in my book.

    Some shows have had great host chemistry from the onset. One that comes immediately to mind are Wheeler Dealers’ Mike Brewer and Edd China. Lot’s of rewinding the DVR to catch the subtle insult trading. Currently my favorite show.

  • avatar
    kericr

    I thought show was a mess, and the problem here is that there are so man perspectives as to what could be seen as wrong that I don’t know where to begin. Carolla’s jokes were stale, and his way of ending each 0-60 ‘minute’ was to scream some idiotic joke loudly to shut everyone up and move on to the next thing.

    If I were running LeMons, I’d make sure these guys are never allowed to show up to another event after the segment they gave it. No BS inspections? No attempt to fix their car? Shooting it with assault rifles and ‘blowing it up?’

    The gameshow segment was a wreck, and Dan Neil did his best to piss all over it. Matt Farah said on twitter he didn’t like it. It’s an element they took from another Speed show where they do the entire thing for half an hour (and coincidentally, Rutledge Wood was one of the contestants).

    I like Matt Farah, but that Porsche segment was a snoozefest, and by the time they got to the interview with Jimmie Johnson (OH GOODY, NASCAR), I had tuned out.

    The biggest thing that irked me about the show however, is how they constantly, subversively took shots at Top Gear US. Just because you guys openly ad-lib doesn’t make your show better, especially when you’re running on 1/5 the budget. Their cinematic sequences look like they belong on Spike TV’s Powerblock, not a show that’s about glorifying the automotive experience.

  • avatar
    bunkie

    Why is this show necessary?

    We already have a funny “car” show in Top Gear, we really don’t need another one. And, let’s be real here, no one watches Top Gear to get useful car information. These people are trying too hard.

    My favorite car shows are Wheeler Dealers (already mentioned), Gearz and Muscle Car. All have appealing, knowledgeable hosts and plenty of actual content. It may be that I tend to want to see how things are done, but these are the best shows on TV.

  • avatar

    Car show talk shows don’t work because we all know better. The weird British humor and pleasing Beeb aesthetics of TG are what make it good (or at least half of it).

    I don’t think I could watch any of it. I don’t want someone reading news to me, I don’t care about general-interest racetrack updates, no one wants a Youtube monologue TV editorial and I absolutely do not want to watch a “roundtable” of pompous bros and their floor-mounted LCD go on about nothing.

    I don’t like it because I want to like it.

  • avatar
    Signal11

    I tried to watch this. I got about 15 seconds into Adam Carolla talking on an ESPN set before I found myself clicking ahead.

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