Top Gear

 

Many of you will know I’m a fan of Top Gear, I’ve been a fan of Jeremy, Richard and James for around 7 years now. So when the whole thing with Jeremy happened I was disappointed and annoyed. Now I’m over the whole thing and am very much looking forward to The Grand Tour. However that’s not what this post is about.

The new “revamped” Top Gear came out last night on BBC2 and I thought I could give it a little review on here. If you don’t care about cars or Top Gear feel free to go and read another post of mine (or just close this I won’t be offended… much. No I’m kidding it’s all good in the hood.)

I was looking through the #TopGear online and it came down to three schools of thought:
“This is boring”
“Matt LeBlanc is saving the show”
“Better than the old one”
I’m assuming the first two were from proper hardcore Top Gear or Clarkson, Hammond and May fans, giving the show a watch to see how it would be without the “dream team.” Most of them seemed to find there was a lack of chemistry which was what I was expecting, that Chris Evans was irritating and trying too hard to be Jeremy by shouting and saying ridiculous metaphors, or that Matt was actually entertaining. The final one seemed to be from people who’d hated the old show, or more specifically hated Jeremy, so found this to be a tamer, nicer version. All in all, the show was viewed by 4.4 million, which although isn’t bad, certainly is not as good as the old one.

Many people though, were expexting a “revamp” and what they ended up with was a very similar version of the old show. Weird. Why would you say something would be different if it wasn’t? That’s like ordering a pizza and then folding it in half instead of ordering a calzone in a restaurant.

Anyway. My opinion. The first thing I did was laugh, at how cringely (is this a word?!) loud the audience was being, then I frowned when I heard Chris Evans do the “TONIGHT” in true Clarkson style. I thought “oh maybe he’ll do his normal voice after this.” HE DIDN’T. He carried on with his Clarkson impression. I hate impressions anyway, because they tend to exaggerate things, but this one was something else.  Although in saying this, I did like the videos playing in the title sequence, as usual with Top Gear, everything looked beautifully shot. Another note on the audience. There appears to be new standing up area in the rafters of the building, which is kind of a good idea, yet kind of pointless.
My next thought was the shouting, Chris does like to shout doesn’t he?! I can’t decide if it’s nerves, a Clarkson impression (again) or because he thinks the audience can’t hear him, but it’s quite annoying. Chris we can all hear you, quieten down.
Then there was the “by the way, we don’t talk about catering anymore” line, well Chris, that was an unneeded joke wasn’t it. Why do I get the feeling that was planted in there?
There’s no denying however, that Chris does like his cars, and his out of studio Dodge test drive wasn’t that bad, he explained things well and drove well, and I found the test engaging. Sabine Schmitz then showed her face and I will admit that it was quite nice to see a woman on the screen. I’ve not seen Top Gun so I couldn’t comment on the references, but I liked the idea behind the challenge. As usual the cinematography was amazing, I love it when they cut to another shot just before Sabine swears, it’s an old trick, but because I’m immature I like it.  Then it was back to the studio for more shouting and a “custody” joke about The Stig, which made no sense because obviously Top Gear would keep The Stig as it was an original part of the show and not connected to Clarkson, Hammond or May, but that’s by the by. Matt LeBlanc did his first proper piece to camera and did the “some say” lines. They weren’t too bad, but you can’t help but think of the old show when you hear them.

Then came the challenge between LeBlanc and Evans. When I saw the Reliants I was a little disappointed as the old boys did do a lot of gags/tests on the Robin, but I braced myself and carried on to see what might be different. Almost immediately after they set off LeBlanc did a Hammond thing of ramming the back of Evans/Mays car. Oh dear. I will say this however. Matt was quite entertaining, I did actually laugh when his car kept breaking down. Trust me I wasn’t expecting, or if I’m honest, wanting to laugh. But I did. And then annoying, Chris said the line about the seagull and I laughed again. DAMN IT. I was starting to almost enjoy it. Matt calling Chris “bro” seemed very unatural however.

Jesse and Gordon’s interviews were a bit weird if I’m honest. But I very much enjoyed watching Ramsey getting knocked over. The “best first car” and “best car ever” things were an interesting idea, a good shake up of the old interview style. The lap is different with a “dirt” section. I’m undecided about this. It’s kind of good, kind of weird.

Another roadtest came afterwards this time by Matt, and it was actually quite funny and informative, the challenge was good, I was pleasantly surprised.

They ended with a “bombshell” joke which was stupid but not as stupid as their actual ending. What the hell is the TV walk?!

And then there’s “Extra Gear” which when I first saw it I reacted with a “wtf is that.” Well it’s a half an hour BBC Three talk show type thing based on the show. Yeah I didn’t think it was needed either. While watching it I realised it was basically “The News” section from the old Top Gear, added with some extra pointless chat that could have been said in the original show but was given to some extra random presenters, added with another celebrity interview (although it was nice to see Chris Ramsey) and then added with some backstage “behind the scenes” footage (which I did enjoy because I’m a nerd who loves that sort of thing). All in all though, as interesting as the chat was, it was pretty pointless, most of it could have been put on the website as extra videos or just in the main show.

To conclude this long rambly post then. The in studio stuff was annoying and let’s be honest pretty rubbish, Chris was too loud, the chemistry wasn’t quite right and the crowd were too enthusiastic . Definitely not as good as the old show. However the challenges, especially Matt’s were actually not too bad, I quite enjoyed them. So. Top Gear. This has made me realise just how good Clarkson, Hammond and May were, although the show wasn’t as appalling as I imagined, it certainly wasn’t too bad. If Chris would just not talk as much it’d be better.

If you made it to the end, well done, I’m amazed, give yourself 10 points.

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Top 5 Songs of the Moment

I haven’t done a musical post for a while, so I thought I would change that by telling you all my current top five songs. You might love these and add them to your playlist, or if you think of better five songs, let me know!

  1.  Hair: Little Mix. This song is SO sassy and incredible I LOVE it. There’s just something so upbeat about this song. I wish I had the hair to swish along to it, but mine just becomes tangled and that ruins the moment.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgUpRwMeRr4

  2. Raging: Kygo. This is an incredible song, it’s fast paced and fun, yet surprisingly deep with very good lyrics. Obssesssed
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZhzN7-Q00KU

  3. 7: Catfish and the Bottlemen. Just a really good bit of music with a incredible guitaring (is that a word? It is now)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ibv5N70ncsk

  4. Wild Things: Alessia Cara. I love her voice so much, she’s incredible. This song is my anthem. “We don’t need your policies, we have no apologies for being, find us where the wild things are”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=De30ET0dQpQ

  5. My final one is basically the opposite of Alessia. Wolves of Winter: Biffy Clyro. This is an instant banger, it’s loud and shouty but in a good relatable way, you can’t just sing along to this you have to shout it and play air instruments.  “WE HAVE ACHIEVED SO MUCH MORE THAN YOU POSSIBLY THOUGHT WE COULD”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpJvP4b5fX8

Exams

It’s the end of the academic year and many of you may be taking exams, I’ve got one at the end of the month which I’ve not revised for yet but that’s not the point, I wanted to write a post that might give you some tips on how to survive the exam period:

  1.  Don’t rush revision. Read through your notes slowly, otherwise you’ll just skim them and won’t actually remember it all.
  2. Cramming doesn’t work for everyone. Start ASAP (which might be a bit difficult for some of you to do now as you might have exams this week. But for future references) the sooner you start the sooner it’s over.
  3. Try and work out whether you work best to silence or with background noise, I’ll be honest I still have no idea, I’ve tried silence, the radio, classical music, the sound of rain, piano music. Nothing’s standing out to me yet, but maybe one of those might help you.
  4. Be colourful, it’s always more fun seeing green ink as opposed to black.
  5. Stay hydrated, avoid getting headaches as they’re so distracting (I have one as I write this and I’m struggling to put sentences together)
  6. Give yourself snack rewards, write a page of revision notes = two biscuits.
  7. DON’T get stressed, it never helps, just keep as calm as you can, remember all you can do is try, as the saying goes “if at first you don’t succeed, try try and try again”
  8. Once in the exam, take all the equipment you need, including as much motivation as you can muster, tissues and water, I once choked in an exam and trust me, trying to keep choking as quiet as possible is challenging, I could have died.

The One That Got Away

This is the tale of a love I lost that still hurts me to this day, my heart was broken.

No. I’m joking that isn’t what this is about. THE BLOODY CRANEFLIES ARE BACK PEOPLE.

Last year I wrote about the horrendous ordeal I went through trying to remove a cranefly from my room in a post titled “Creatures of the Night”  and you will be pleased to hear the situation has happened again. I on the other hand am not pleased. I am incredibly annoyed.

Over the last few days I’ve caught glimpses of a cranefly, doing it’s usual disgusting thing of making pattery noises and having hideous long legs and disgusting wings. In an ideal world I would have removed it by now. But life is cruel and this cranefly keeps vanishing, I have no idea how I keep losing it, one minute I can see it, I go to grab my weapon of choice, this time not a folder but an old slipper, and it’s gone. WHERE DOES IT GO?! I search high and low for it, shaking every surface, turning my phone torch on and off, and it doesn’t appear, so I give up and sit back on my bed. THEN IT APPEARS AGAIN. I’m being mocked by an insect.

So every night I have to go to bed knowing there’s a cranefly in my bedroom. Maybe tonight will be my lucky night and this time this cranefly won’t be the one that got away and I will be victorious in getting rid of it…the key word here is maybe. Maybe.

Bank Holiday

Today was a bank holiday, and in all my 19 years on earth, I still don’t know when bank holidays are or why they exist. I’m not complaining though, a day off is a day off.

Bank holidays are always a little bit weird, you wake up later than usual, almost jetlagged muttering to yourself that you must “remember it’s Monday” but inevitably forgetting it’s Monday 20 minutes later as you tell everyone you see it’s Sunday and as they correct you, having to say “it doesn’t feel like a Monday does it.” Today at one point I actually thought it was boxing day, which considering it’s bloody May is a bit odd.

My bank holiday was spent doing some classic bank holiday activities, eating, watching television, baking, eating the cupcakes I baked and going out for a “lovely long walk” today’s walk being around a farm shop which is quite possibly one of the most middle class things I’ve ever done. It is fun though isn’t it, knowing there’s an extra day in the weekend. This meant I was able to come home for the bank holiday which was really lovely as usual.

Now, as the bank holiday draws to a close you remember it’s “back to normal” tomorrow and the complaining begins. Every bank holiday is the same, no one remembers it’s a normal day the next day, until about 4pm when everyone in unison get’s depressed and starts counting down the days till Friday. Which remember is in four days because it’s a Monday.