OK.... so I finally got around to watching the FIRST episode last night.
Chris Evans is annoying. But he MIGHT end up being annoying in a "good" way, if things develop in the right way in the future.
Leblanc is pretty good. He seemed a bit scripted, like the BBC doesn't trust him yet. But in the moments when he was left to say and act as he wanted he seemed to be enjoying himself, and was entertaining.
Where are the others? Why was Sabine not in studio? And can the BBC be so dense as to not see that people like Harris and Rory much better than Evans! I can't understand how they are missing the idea/fact that having three hosts in studio and on the challenges is a much better way to get energy and balance in the segments and in the chemistry of the characters of the show. Baffling.
I think it is saying something that the trailer for Extra Gear is BETTER than the 1st Episode itself!
Where were the car reviews? Leblanc's segment with the Ariel was close, but it seemed to be too scripted. They should have put the thing through it's paces, tested what it could actually do. Instead, it was a pre-planned race with a pre-planned outcome. Same with Rover vs. Jeep... we all knew how that would turn out, which isn't always bad, but we weren't sold the idea that there might be a plot-twist at the end.
The outcome of that segment really says a lot about the show on a whole: Good ideas, good vehicles, good production quality; but bad chemistry, bad editing. Leblanc again seemed to be being told what to do. And when Chris Evans cheats we want to punch him; but when Clarkson cheats, we feel bad for him and let him win.
So... if they start using three hosts. If they put Evans in his place, or get rid of him -- which is probably the only answer. And if they incorporate Harris and Rory and Sabine, and the style of presentation/production and CAR REVIEWS, I think it might be a good show!
As it is, the show had a few successful moments. But mostly it was boring. It was boring because of the delivery, chemistry, etc... But in being boring, while having good production, it actually became annoying. It's like the kid with the sweet stereo system in his car who, instead of using it to listen to music, uses it to proclaim how cool he is by annoying those around him by showing how loud he can be.