Review of Top Gear on History’s Monument to Moab

Review of Top Gear on History’s Monument to Moab

Top Gear on History’s first leg of Season Three came to an end this week with another challenge-centric episode that sent the hosts on a three-day, off-road adventure.  The plan was for them to trek from Monument Valley to Moab as the crow flies for one hundred and thirty miles in various, popular rental cars.  However, no company would allow this but BBC Worldwide found a way around that minor hindrance.  The premise was simple and honest.  They had to get from point A to point B and return the cars with as little damage possible.  There was no allusion that they were trying to prove which was ‘America’s Best Rental Car’ or anything like that.  They didn’t have any supercar prize drive for the winner either.  It was just these guys and the cars in the desert.  Easy peasy, right?  Rutledge was saddled with the subcompact Toyota Yaris.  Tanner bombed about in a Lincoln Town Car.  While Adam drove a V6 Ford Mustang…aggressively.

“All I got to do: don’t wreck it. Don’t look at me like that. I can do it.” – Adam Ferrara

Rutledge Wood's tweet dated 25-Sep-2012 (Top Gear)

Rutledge Wood’s tweet dated 25-Sep-2012 (Top Gear)

None of these vehicles had any business being driven off asphalt.  Then again, this is the same show that took minivans over the Continental Divide and Small Cars into a Louisiana swamp.  In an effort to make the mayhem last longer than a few minutes, minor modifications were made to the cars.  Of course, somebody cheated and did a bit more to his car than upgrade the wheels/tyres.  (See how I didn’t name names but there’s a link in there, so you know what to do.)  This turned out to be a good thing because one of the cars had to have a winch in order to tow the other two losers out of sand and/or what wasn’t mud.  Oh yes, poo took centre stage on a Top Gear episode yet again.  Quite frankly it was probably avoidable but I think this production team is diabolical and I think we love them for it.

Promo Still from Top Gear USA's Facebook Page 26-Sep-2012

Rutledge and Adam are knee-deep in not mud
(Top Gear USA’s Facebook Page 26-Sep-2012)

“Words cannot fully express the anger I share towards both of you right now.” – Rutledge Wood

The last time these guys had to camp out in a desert, at least they had some kind of shelter but not this time.  They were left with nothing but their cars and minor creature comforts.  It was funny to watch them set up for the night, and their questionable sleeping arrangements made them appear to be the most inept campers on television.  They faced many difficult passages along their journey and made it through by grit, a bit of skill and sheer, dumb luck.  It was amazing to see how huge the canyons and rock formations were in the helicopter shots.  Especially with the three moving dots on the vista that carried the cast.  Some of these trails were better suited for rock crawlers, but the guys persevered and it provided some exciting footage.  Despite the steep drops and massive boulders, they managed to have a good time.  Talk about laughing in the face of danger, eh?

“This is Town Car country…countrycountry!” – Tanner Foust

Adam Ferrara's tweet dated 25-Sep-2012 (Top Gear)

Adam Ferrara’s tweet dated 25-Sep-2012 (Top Gear)

The final segment looked like nothing but an excuse for wanton destruction at first but turned out to be very exciting.  It was a lot easier watching the cars in precarious situations without anybody in them.  This was an entertaining episode and if their goal was to close out 2012 with a bang, then they’ve succeeded.  The cast performed well under dire circumstances and kudos to the crew for toughing it out as well.  In its relatively short run, they’ve all been through a lot together and we can look forward to what else is in store.  The rest of Season Three is currently in production and is set to return in 2013 for a ten episode run.  Until then there will be reruns on History Channel, in addition to free episode views on the show’s website.  All episodes are already available for purchase on iTunes and Amazon.