Check Out Our New Look

CABLE RAT RACE: OK Start For ‘Top Gear’

By | Monday November 22, 2010 @ 1:34pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

After several years in development, first at NBC and then at History, the U.S. adaptation of the hit British unscripted series Top Gear made it on the air last night. The History series debuted to respectable ratings – 1.9 million viewers, 1.1 million of them in the adults 18-49 demo. It didn’t come close to breaking any records though – for instance, History’s American Pickers drew 3.1 million in its series premiere earlier this year.

Comments (14)

Idris Elba, Louis Theroux and ‘Top Gear’ Headline BBC America’s Fall

The Brit actor who’s just signed to play maverick cop Alex Cross in David Twohy’s Cross, stars in the 6-part BBC mini-series Luther playing another maverick cop (think Cracker meets Prime Suspect meets Wallender). Luther uses the Columbo trick of letting the viewer discover early on who the murderer is – the suspense comes from watching how Luther will catch the murderer. Brit TV reviewers agreed Elba saved a tired formula “pitched somewhere in that territory between fantasy and cliché that commissioning editors find so irresistible,” humphed the Guardian, while the Daily Telegraph said: “Luther lets Elba down”. Poor early reviews impacted ratings. From an audience of 5.8 million (24%) for its first outing, ratings fell to 3.1 million (12.3%) by episode five. Despite falling ratings, the Beeb announced at the Edinburgh TV festival it was commissioning Luther for a couple more two-hour specials. Luther premieres October 17.

Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz do a turn throwing a hatchback car round a racetrack in hugely popular car show Top Gear. Andy Garcia and Harry Potter star Rupert Grint also test their driving skills this season. Cruise and Cameron’s much-publicised appearance came as a welcome spike in Top Gear’s declining ratings. That week’s episode scored 5.8 million viewers and a 22% audience share compared with a season average of 2.6 million. Top Gear remains popular in Britain, and has made stars out … Read More »

Comments (0)