Sunday, December 6, 2009

8th Doctor - Max Warp

Serial 9P – Top Gear
An Alternative Program Guide by Ewen Campion-Clarke
Thirty-Ninth Entry in the EC Unauthorized Guide O' Max Headroom
More crucial inspiration from Jared "High Intelligence" Hansen


Serial 9P – Top Gear -

Jeremy Clarkson welcomes the audience back to "Top Gear", as ever being broadcast from the Dunsfold Park Aerodrome because no one else will allow the car-obsessed bastards to film due to quite a few environmental protection laws.

In today’s show, Richard Hammond (aka 'The Hamster') will be test driving the new Bigged-Out Motor provided by Top Gear’s rival automobile entertainment show, "Pimp My Ride UK". He will also decide where the Vampire Turbojet-Propelled Drag-Racing car should go on the show’s Cool Wall... if anyone cares.

Meanwhile, fellow presenter James May will also be looking at the latest Chevrolet Lacetti, and later on, guest celebrity Conrad Westmaas will experience the punishing escape velocity of being beaten up by the Stig in an alleyway outside the studio.

Mercifully, at this moment the titles begin and we can stop hiding behind the sofa because it’s actually Doctor Who making a sociological point rather than the genuine awfulness of Top Gear.

Parte the First

Within the heart of a contained paradox lies Shaula IV, a leisure planet which has gone WAY down the list of top intergalactic tourist destinations since it became the battlefield between the Time Lords and the Dustbins. As both sides try to nip back in time and sterilize their respective enemies’ grandfathers, trillions of the combatants cease to exist, whole races are destroyed and on and on until the universe is rendered unrecognizable as the Temporal Difference of Opinion engulfs previously-unheard-of and previously-non-existent races!

Destroying every single event that lead to the Dustbins’ existence and causing their enemies to cease to exist, the Time Lords attempt to win a war that will never have happened!

But that’s getting rather heavy and metaphysical, so let’s instead focus on the events of the one Time Lord too much of chicken to get involved in it and the incredibly irritating ape descendent?

The TARDIS materializes outside the aerodrome as the Doctor once more tries to ditch Lucie Miller. This time he’s remembered she actually comes from 2007 and not 2008, but none of this really matters anyway. To the surprise of no one, Lucie is under the delusion that the Doctor is taking her out on a date to a car exhibition.

However the Doctor doesn’t give a pair of fetid dingo’s kidneys what Lucie thinks and rushes over to a discarded piece of paper excitedly. Lucie muses that she’d much rather pose erotically on a proper racing car than a shed like the TARDIS – which deeply offends the Doctor. Lucie takes this as proof he has a classic inferiority complex, but the Doctor is just nauseated by the thought of Lucie trying to be erotic.

Thankfully at this moment, distraction comes from the nearby TV screens as Jeremy Clarkson announces Top Gear will be joining Richard Hammond live throughout his test drive of the Pimp My Ride UK Bigged-Out Motor. James May launches into a speech about the fascinating aspects of fuel exchange, but Jeremy Clarkson tells him to shut up and pokes him in the eye.

Richard Hammond says the power steering is a bit of a swine too and he’s having to compensate for drag as he shifts the gear around the track, and Jeremy Clarkson dismisses it as typical Pimp My Ride UK design – proof positive that that no car can possibly hold as much sub-woofer and bright purple paint whilst remaining structurally sound AND heterosexual. James May warns his colleague about his lack of political correctness, but James May doesn’t care about that and says, "There’s only one word for Pimp My Ride UK design - shithouse."

Suddenly Richard Hammond reports that he’s having some difficulties with the GPS which has taken to screaming "Snotar-Ha!" at him in the voice of Mike Thecoolperson and the Doctor, who is watching all this on that nearby TV screens I sensibly mentioned earlier, laughs sadistically and shouts, "No, my dear Hamster, you must DIE!"

James May calls to Richard Hammond and asks for a proper soundbite for the DVD, but his colleague is too busy smashing his pimped-up drag racer into a wall at 314 miles per hour to oblige. There’s nothing anyone can do except cut to a commercial, and the Doctor whirls to tell the bored Lucie that he is certain of one thing: that crash was no accident, but a deliberate assassination of Richard Hammond.

"We must find out who committed this atrocity," the Doctor vows, "and buy them a pint! The little rodent had it coming for years..."

With the Time Lord’s handy-dandy psychic passport, the Doctor and Lucie are able to enter the studios and get past the bouncer Kirsty Wark, who has been forced to moonlight as a security guard as well as her job as newsreader to make ends meet. When she asks the Doctor just WHO actually sent him and Lucie to investigate Hammond’s accident, the Doctor reveals he’s told her several times already, but erased her memory each time for security reasons.

But the amazing ratings for Hammond’s death have finally made the BBC sit up and take notice and their supreme commander, Chancellor Michael Grade of the British Broadcorping Castration is making a personal visit. The attempt to unite the mighty empires of Top Gear and Pimp My Ride UK have failed spectacularly and Grade blames all this on his brand new R-T-Droid.

The R-T-Droid is the latest output of the Serious Cybernetics Company, a colossal Welsh robot with the ability to manipulate audiences with maximum ruthlessness. As such, Grade discovers from the R-T-Droid that the ratings have never been higher and more people are tuning in all the time to watch an action replay of Richard Hammond snuffing it – what’s more, the live Twitter feed reveals that 61% of the public believe the Pimp My Ride UK Oligarchy is responsible!

The public are foaming at the mouth and the R-T-Droid suggests that immediate and devastating prime-time repeat schedule against Pimp My Ride UK will improve Top Gear’s ratings by another 20%. But this all-out war between the car shows is not what Grade wants, as it would break the budget and ruin the profit margin.

Just then, the Doctor and Lucie barge in shouting that the media pigs cannot lie their way out of THIS one – the Hamster was murdered and the Doctor is determined to find out the truth... unless something more interesting crops up.

After checking with the R-T-Droid, the Chancellor of the BBC gives the Doctor carte blanche: "Bloody brilliant - proles over here will watch ANYTHING with a murder investigation so long as it isn’t called Star Cops! And we can do it entirely on location - in this building!"

Grade doesn’t care who is found guilty at the end of this so long as it’s not Pimp My Ride UK because then he might have to cancel it and then lose all the young, blinged-up chav demographic and have to waste precious cash making a brand new show to appeal to them...

Meanwhile, the commercial break has finally come to an end, so Jeremy Clarkson tells them the death of young Hammond is at least quality entertainment and everyone on the Top Gear programme is truly devastated they never thought of doing it earlier. Personally, Clarkson fees as though he’s had one of his own arms hacked off with a rusty chainsaw, jammed up his backside and wiggled around – which is why his hair looks like that.

"But at least they can take comfort from the fact that Richard Hammond died doing what he loved," Clarkson notes, "driving a Bigged-Up Motor in a reckless manner in at high speed. He won’t be missed."

Tim Westwood also extends his sympathies to Hammond’s family on behalf of the entire Pimp My Ride UK Oligarchy: "That’s the way it goes down, straight blazin’ when the Hammond boys be walking with the big dogs, you gotta go hard or go home! Now my main man down in the ground, it’s how we does, I’m gonna big him up something crazy! Is off the meter!"

James May points out that Richard Hammond would still be alive today if the Pimp My Ride UK Bigged-Out Motor had been roadworthy. Tim Westwood insists that their bling machines are incapable of malfunctioning and the only explanation they can offer is that the ship was deliberately sabotaged by someone who wanted Richard Hammond dead – which means at least eight million viewers will be soon to be helping the police with their inquiries into the matter.

In the present, however, the Doctor and Lucie are actually investigating things. Well, sort of. At first they were going to investigate Hammond’s Bigged-Up Motor for sabotage but Kirsty Wark said sabotage was impossible, so THAT line of inquiry dried up pretty darn quick. Lucie thus decides that Kirsty Wark herself is the assassin, and when Kirsty denies this Lucie leaps to the next logical conclusion: it was Michael Grade himself trying to boost ratings. The Doctor refuses to belief Grade has the balls to think up ideas without his R-T-Droid, so Lucie accuses the R-T-Droid itself as the assassin. When it’s pointed out that the R-T-Droid, like all robots, is castrated by Isaac Asimov’s three laws of non-vehicular-tampering, Lucie decides that there can only be one murderer: the Doctor.

"SHUT! UP!!" screams the Doctor, finally snapping and smacking Lucie repeatedly in the face. Lucie, however, knees him in the bollocks and both time travelers end up lying unconscious in pools of their own blood beside the Cool Wall...

The duo finally regain consciousness in an out of control Toyota Hilux hurtling around the racetrack at the whim of an untrustworthy GPS shouting Snotaran propaganda – the Doctor and Lucie are trapped and doomed to die the exact same way as Richard Hammond!

"This really IS embarrassing!" the Doctor sobs as Lucie slowly begins to realize there are no escape pods, no lifeboats and no parachutes in a Toyota Hilux at the best of times. Gripped with sudden mortal terror, Lucie starts screaming out the names of vermin...

...until the Doctor has the bright idea of simply turning off the car engine, undoing the seatbelts and simply gets out of the car.

Lucie refuses to believe it’s that simple and stays in the passenger seat, screaming the names of rodents at the top of her voice and insists they were put in the car by the murderer! Who, by Conan-Doyle logic, can only be... Lucie herself!

Sighing in almost physical pain, the Doctor wanders off to find someone more interesting to talk to. Unfortunately, the first people he meets is none other than Tim Westwood who is outraged at the idea he might be considered a murderer. I think. He IS outraged, anyway, and screams a lot of random funky-sounding syllables interspersed with "You know who I am? It’s ya boy Westwood! The king pin of the car game! I’m ALL ABOUT the metaphor! YOUR CHEESE GAME IS STRONG!"

The Doctor finally grabs Tim Westwood by the throat and explains the Time Lord is under strict instructions NOT to find Westwood guilty of murder but the braindead 50-year-old Ali G wannabe is being so damned annoying that he’s tempted to blame Pimp My Ride UK anyway!

Kirsty Wark runs up and says she’s checked the updated wikipedia entry and it proves no one tampered with the Pimp My Ride UK Bigged-Out Motor and computers cannot lie! Thus, she decides, Tim Westwood IS guilty and wanted to provoke Grade into canceling Top Gear so Pimp My Ride UK could become the dominant car show on British/Welsh television.

"Yeah, whatever," the Doctor yawns and wanders off.

Deeply, deeply upset, the pathetic Tim Westwood contacts his agent and protests that he must release a new album to win more public support so Pimp My Ride UK can dominate the ratings.

Back at the studio, Lucie has been found in the Toyota Hilux shouting out random animal names and at the Chancellor of the BBC’s insistence Lucie has been made the new guest presenter to replace Hammond mere minutes after his death. Not only will it broaden Top Gear’s appeal, it’s also incredibly cost effective.

Jeremy Clarkson however strongly doubts that the great male British public is interested in "a female of the weaker gender", no matter how big her tits are. How he reconciles this with the success of Two Pints Of Lager & A Packet of Crisps I have no idea. Maybe it’s because he’s a whining misogynist bastard?

This impression is not helped as, mere moments into the latest edition of Top Gear, Jeremy Clarkson totally loses and tries to run over Lucie for "being a girl at the mercy of her hormones". Clarkson starts smashing up the studio in a fury at the MERE IDEA that Lucie might want him to talk about his emotional problems or, even worse, shoes!

Nevertheless, being vaguely professional, Jeremy Clarkson reviews the BMW he’s driving for the audience at home even as he uses it to hit-and-run the audience in the studio: "It’s a MAN’S car, literally fuelled by testosterone and not suitable for shandy drinkers! Listen to the throb of those engines! This car screams out to the ladies to bring a toothbrush and a spare pair of knickers!"

Finally, the Stig is able to sedate Clarkson with a blowpipe and some rhinoceros tranquilizers and James May is left to compromise on Clarkson’s behalf as he foams at the mouth and screams about giant kittens and Eddie Waring impression.

Lucie MAY join Top Gear as long as she

a) limits herself to smiling and "sticking out her bits"
b) never drives a car
c) does not give opinions
d) always allows Clarkson the last word as it IS his show
e) never upstages a man
f) shows no sign of independent thought

Lucie agrees to this, mainly because she wasn’t listening.

After the recording, the new Top Gear team all go to the bar to get absolutely blitzed and the appallingly drunk James May admits he’s fallen completely and utterly in love with Lucie Miller, who is so much more attractive than Richard Hammond and doesn’t get the death threats from feminists, environmental campaigners, animal welfare activists and nuns like Jeremy Clarkson.

Clarkson, for his part, is getting appallingly drunk and hurling abuse at the fans of Pimp My Ride UK and is sickened that BBC guidelines prevent him speaking his mind without causing offence? "Is this what Lew Grade fought and died for?!" he demands before passing out in a pool of his own vomit.

The Doctor meanwhile, completely ignores Grade as he runs up and demands to know if the Time Lord has found the murderer yet – and it’s not out of any moral obligation, as the Chancellor of the BBC is freaking out - the R-T-Droid insisted more and more people are switching off to watch reruns of Father Ted and when Grade yelled at the android it ran away from him, blubbering and upset and Grade hasn’t seen his R-T-Droid since.

The Doctor muses that the heap of spare parts at the end of the corridor looks rather like the gutted remains of an R-T-Droid and immediately Grade falls to his knees, clutches his head and howls like a prairie dog in mourning.

Idly wondering if there’ll be another murder soon, the Doctor ducks into the gents and doesn’t emerge for the rest of the episode. Disturbingly, on the way he in passes Kirsty Wark – and what was SHE doing in the gents? Huh?

Meanwhile, the now paralytic Lucie and James May are returning to their hotel room and making lustful small talk about throttle ratios and transmission fluid. Finally giving into their desires, they fall to the corridor floor and start making out.

They don’t react at all as a gunshot is heard and Time Westwood bursts out of his hotel room screaming, "I’m gonna be crazy! Some blinged-up R-T-Droid just tried to shoot the big dog, baby! The bomb’s about to go off! I’m gonna have to elevate my game! Now me boys have flipped the script - the joint's straight blazin’ - it's off the meter! LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN!"

Tim Westwood gingerly steps over the copulating pair and runs off in the vain search to find somebody... ANYBODY... who gives a crap about this assassination attempt. As he goes, Lucie and James May stop snogging long enough to wonder how rubbish an assassin would be to miss all Tim Westwood in his neon-yellow jumpsuit and bling?

Realizing they don’t really care, they start screwing once more...

Parte the Second

Tim Westwood finally stumbles upon Michael Grade and starts screaming at him that he is considering moving to BBC Scotland, where no self-respecting assassin would dare follow him. Despite the Chancellor of the BBC’s urges to reconsider, he is simply told "Go hard brother number one! Two! Three!" and prepares to dispatch the Pimp My Ride UK Pimped-Up Big Motor army tanks!

Grade is understandably far from impressed when Kirsty Wark reveals that for once Tim Westwood is not talking absolute bollocks and literally thousands of pimped assault vehicles are heading straight here like a really, really tacky war film.

The Doctor finally emerges from the lavatory and bumps into the flushed, disheveled and very-obviously-just-bonked Lucie and together they decide they might as well blow this shitheap. As they pass through the studio, the Time Lord stops in horror.

"These bastards put the Honda S2000 in the UnCool section?" the Doctor gasps, "THIS IS MADNESS!!!"

The Doctor vows to move the car to the Cool Wall and solve this injustice once and for all when suddenly someone starts firing an Uzi submachine gun at them. The Doctor orders Lucie to draw the fire and, once again proving her godlike stupidity, she cheerfully dodges bullets as she skips out of the studio while the Time Lord hides behind the comfy chairs and whimpers.

Lucie finally makes it into the car park as Tim Westwood dives into his Pimped-Up Big Motor and drives off to meet the tanks... but for some reason the tanks just roll straight over his modified Volkswagen Sharan, leaving it a large and thin patch of purple tinfoil on the road. Tim Westwood is dead – and Grade realizes this means the end of any hope for the BBC to keep the Pimp My Ride UK franchise!

Still. You gotta laugh, don’t you?

Doing just that, Lucie wanders back to the Top Gear studio, completely forgetting the danger of being machine-gunned to death, and finds James May idly polishing an Uzi submachine gun in a very suspicious manner. With her usual perspicacity, Lucie doesn’t mention this at all and the two presenters start shagging once again.

The tanks roll into the carpark and members of the public either run for their lives or double over in agony, laughing uncontrollably at the ridiculous pimped-up war machines, especially when Michael Grade falls to his knees before the tanks and begs for some "pimped-up mercy".

One of those pointing and laughing cruelly is the Doctor, who easily defeats the entire armed unit by scratching their paintwork with the TARDIS key. With their bigged-up motors ruined, the Pimp My Ride UK army must abandon their military reprisals until their vehicles are once again fully sick!

Grade realizes Pimp My Ride UK is defenseless and this presents him with a choice. He can either cancel the entire series in the biggest publicity coup of all time or do sod all and look like a completely spineless no-fist loser. The Doctor challenges Grade to make a decision and without his precious R-T-Droid, and Grade decides to be true to himself... and after a brief pause puts Pimp My Ride UK on an eighteen-month hiatus and demands a new star.

"A horse’s arse can’t change its spots," the Doctor muses, before pushing Michael Grade into heavy traffic. "That’s for the 1980s, you utter fuckwit!" he shouts over Grade’s screams. "DAMN IT, I JUST LOVE POSTMODERN RETRIBUTION!!!"

Feeling IMMENSELY smug, the Doctor decides it’s time to sort out the Mystery of the Dead Hamster once and for all, and gathers all the suspects together in the Top Gear studio. Mainly because that’s where they all were to start with.

In the studio, the Doctor addresses Lucie, James May, Kirsty Wark, the Stig, Jeremy Clarkson and the now wheelchair-bound Michael Grade. "Richard Hammond was not some innocent murder victim," he booms theatrically. "For Richard Hammond was no innocent, nor even was he a murder victim!"

The Doctor rips off the Stig’s helmet to reveal... RICHARD HAMMOND!

"Yes! The real Stig is filming a Zovirax add in Hungary, and Richard Hammond was merely pretending to be him all along! You see, Hammond was no mere presenter of a TV motor show – but all along was an undercover agent sent here by Pimp My Ride UK to investigate outspoken columnist and media personality Jeremy Clarkson, bored to the point of psychosis presenting a motoring program for middle-aged men since 2002!"

"Um, do I actually get to admit this?" asks the Hamster meekly.

"No, so shut up!" the Doctor retorts. "But Clarkson guessed at the Hamster’s true intentions and, as part of Top Gear’s war against Pimp My Ride UK, Richard Hammond HAD TO DIE! In a Pimped-Up Bigged-Out Motor, which would scare off Tim Westwood enough to lure in the Pimp My Ride UK battle fleet for Clarkson to ridicule in an unprecedented Top Gear exclusive! But Richard Hammond was too clever and thus faked his own death by using some stock footage and a cardboard-cut-out of David Tennant in the driver’s seat, while in truth he escaped disguised as the Stig whom no one would ever suspect!"

"Very amusing," Jeremy Clarkson deadpans before snatching up James May’s submachine gun. "Now back off or I shoot the Chancellor of the BBC! I’ve got a Caterham Seven R500 waiting outside, fueled and ready to go, and more than capable of running over any bleeding-heart liberal that gets in my way..."

"You should be looking to elevate your game, baby!" mocks a voice from the shadows. "You be walking with the big dogs now, Clarkson SO LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN!"

Yes. Tim Westwood has somehow returned from beyond the grave!

"Yo, faking your death, it’s a good look!" he explains. "When I heard from my main Doctor here that Hamster boy be faking his death, I got straight on the phone. If I died, can you imagine the bling machines we're going to create that’ll be cruising down your local high street? No, it won’t gonna be crazy. So I nicked the R-T-Droid and pimped him up till he looked just like me!"

Screaming in fury, Jeremy Clarkson opens fire... but the gun’s empty.

"I emptied it," James May explains. "Do you have ANY idea how boring you are, you politically incorrect posturing ass? SHUT THE HELL UP! I’ve had to put up with you whining about do-gooders! Hamster – take this bitch down!"

Alas, Clarkson easily escapes and runs to a door with a rather dated G-logo on it, dives inside and said door vanishes with a strange wheezing, groaning sound.

Everyone decides to not to mention this ever again and get on with their lives.

In front of a crowd of cheering fans, James May introduces a brand new, Clarkson-free edition of "Top Gear" in which they’re going to be putting the new leopard skin furry dice through their paces, comparing different types of luggage rack, exploring the history of the humble traffic bollard, taking a vote on rear view mirrors and presenting the top ten tips for caravan holidays.

In short, the show is doomed to cancellation – something so obvious that even Lucie can work it out. The Doctor muses that maybe out of this tragedy some good may come, forcing the public to watch something else, like a certain long running science fiction series currently being made by BBC Wales... but it probably won’t work.

"Still it should piss off Michael Grade, so it’s not a total loss," the Doctor broods as ITV buys the rights to Pimp My Ride UK, forcing the Chancellor of the BBC to raise the license fee in direct opposition to the protesting screams of the R-T-Droid.

The duo return to the TARDIS as Lucie notes that the Doctor choosing a blue shed for his penis extension reveals interesting things about his psychological wellbeing, so the Time Lord clips her round the ear before they depart.

Elsewhere, Jeremy Clarkson stands in a strangely-decorated live-in office and control room and addresses several other shadowy figures. "Turns out that the Doctor and Lucie are REAL and not just a delusion in Bill’s head. What’s more, they ruined our plan to get revenge on Michael Grade!" he explains as he removes his rather unconvincing rubber mask to reveal that Jeremy Clarkson is, in fact...


Next Time...
"Tee hee! Follow the white rabbit!"
"Wasn’t this done back in 1991?"
"Loozie Milar vrom vamus English town of Card Whiff!"
"Blackpool! That’s what David Tennant was in!"
"SHE set him on fire? You little minx! Right on!"
"Do sequels normally go like that?"
"Lucie Miller you anthropomorphic duck, you’ve discovered the joy of Nestle chocolates! I haven’t had a decent Auton story since that nasty business in Singapore!"
"I zink ze Doktor zhould ztay on as our morale offizer."
"The sunset across Mermaid Bay! What more could you ask for?"
"Adequate toilet facilities?"
"Oh god I am sick of this version of the theme music!"
"Tell the hookah-smoking caterpillar has given us these mushrooms..."
"You’re the replacement for the women’s institute, aren’t you?"
"Desolate, deserted and dusty... and we’re STILL in fucking Cardiff!"
"The joke’s really gotten rather old, hasn’t it?"
...Brave New World...

Book(s)/Other Related –
Dr Who: Full Throttle
Doctor Who & The Sad, Anorak-Clad Car-Obsessed Wankers (Canada Only)
Motorway Madness by Lemmy from Motorhead

Fluffs – Paul McGann seemed to star in a reasonably-priced Big Finish audio drama for most of this story.

"Mate, if we was blazin’ hany straighter we would be tha road from Piccadilly to the public toilets in Broadwick at 1 in tha morning! We need some eat, something hoff tha meter! Check it out, Cardiff in ha Brazilian style, realise!"

Goofs –
Whose idea was it to use light blue lettering against a red background on the CD case spine - Colin Baker? This is madness!
So Jeremy Clarkson isn’t actually a REAL person? Thank God for that. I thought that flesh mask was a bit loose in that Parkinson interview. Plus it means he can’t sue anyone! Everybody’s happy!

Fashion Victims -
The Stig’s novelty Space Rat outfit with all the shoulder pads and mohawk helmet with teeth painted on it.

Technobabble -
Tim Westood intends to have his hetero life partner Dave "reverse the bling of the straight blazing flow" somewhere at some point as soon as they can both find the time.

Links and References -
The Doctor still keeps his psychic paper in the pocket of his leather jacket which is, apparently, "fantastic". This seems to be building up to something but I cannot for the life of me think what.

Untelevised Misadventures -
The last time the Doctor and Lucie encountered Tim Westwood, it was part of a complicated plot to kill the American President by pimping up Air Force One by crashing it into Gilligan’s Island. For some reason both the Doctor and Lucie have vowed never to discuss what happened next, but reliable sources indicate one hell of a cat-fight between Lucie and Mary-Anne.

Groovy DVD Extras -
In undoubtedly one of the weirdest extras ever, Top Gear offers David Tennant’s guest appearance on "Pimp My TARDIS UK" in 2007:

"Mad colouring here, this sort of blue can’t go with much. Man, me mate’s havin’ some trouble here with his kami-lion circuit for real – the windows ain’t even the right size! Look at this, paint peelin’ off, his phone is hooked up on a permanent call to STATIC and – hey, what’s this? Oh, I don't believe it, he’s trying to cover up his extra-dimensional void with a cardboard cut-out of his inferior interior! Straight lazy! They discontinued the coral backdrop three centurions ago – there a reason for that. Metal grating floors! Perfect that old episode of "The Sweeney" look! Scanner’s knocked me flat on my back by nearly being a piece of alright – flat screen HD, but ONLY 12 INCHES! Mate, your ride may be dimensionally transcendental so why not fill up the space? What my man’s got here is a practical infinity of busted JUNK. But I say it ain’t so, Doctor, prepare to be RENOVATED, I’s gonna pimp your ride!"
", jings!"

Dialogue Disasters –

Lucie: As far as I’m concerned, this sort of thing only appeals to middle-aged single men having mid-life crises.
Doctor: Nonsense! These cars aren’t just ANY old cars - they’re the latest, sleekest, fastest cars ever constructed. In any case, I had my mid-life crisis centuries ago. Curiously when I met Charley on that desert island. Everything sort of went downhill. Funny, but now I come to mention it, I’m surprised I never noticed I’d been in bed with her before we first met...
Lucie: Do I look like I care?
Doctor: Oh, shut it, duckface.

Jeremy Clarkson: You realize, of course, this means WAR?!
Tim Westwood: UK understand what’s about to go down, Westwood the Album. And we’re goin to bang in your face with the hottest joints around, real hip hop, nothing but big things. Now drop the bomb! BOOM!

Lucie: Hamster!
Doctor: What?!
Lucie: If saying "Hamster" causes cars to crash, then maybe saying it again, you know, undoes the effect?
Doctor: How the hell is that supposed to work?
Lucie: Ferret!
Doctor: For fuck’s sake, Lucie...
Lucie: Mole! Umm... Otter! Beaver! Oh God, what are those things called that pop out of holes?
Doctor: I don’t believe it. I’m trapped inside an out of control racing car about to crash into a wall! Worse, I’m trapped with a dozy Northern bint who is wasting these last few moments listing vermin!
Lucie: Meercats!
Doctor: Death can ONLY be a blessed release...

Dialogue Triumphs –

Doctor: It’s quiet. Too quiet.
Lucie: I was just thinking aloud
Doctor: Ah, that’ll be why.

Jeremy Clarkson: Everyone knows what women are like! One minute they’ll be checking their lipstick in the mirror, the next they’ve reversed into a traffic island and knackered the clutch. It’s a scientific
fact that men don’t get into accidents because they don’t have the
accident chromosome! Oh, why don’t they want to go to bed with me?!

Grade: Doctor, have you found the murderer yet?
Doctor: These things take time, Chancellor! You can’t just point the finger of blame at the first person who looks a bit shifty!
Grade: Oh, a subplot to fool the audience, I see...
Doctor: Go away.
Grade: What?
Doctor: Just... just go away. Go. Just go. Go now. Go. Keep going.

Jeremy Clarkson: I spent most of my life presenting a motoring show for middle-aged men. BUT NO MORE! IT ENDS NOW! And back to the studio!

Doctor: There’s nothing like a good murder mystery, is there?
Lucie: Yeah, and this was NOTHING like a good murder mystery, was it? No one died!
Doctor: That’s the thing about murder mysteries. There’s always a twist in the tale. You can’t get a better twist in the tale than the revelation that no one actually died.
Lucie: There’s a total lack of gory deaths! This is rubbish.
Doctor: Oh Lucie, how I despise you so.
Lucie: ...thanks!

Jeremy Clarkson on Lucie:
"It looks like a brick and steers like a shopping trolley."

UnQuotable Quote -
Lucie: "Time And Relative Dimension In Shed." That’s about as funny as syphilis, that is!

Viewer Quotes -

"You know if that Jeremy Clarkson bastard actually took public transport in a while, I might not despise the cruel, sexist, anti-environment twat! I’m not saying him taking the bus would make me like him, but it’s a start!" – Billie Piper (2008)

"Top Gear stuff was entertaining at first but just got annoying the longer it went on. I suppose that makes this story all the more accurate in its depiction of the show. In fact, I’d say that in terms of accuracy, this was the Eighth Doctor equivalent of a John Lucarotti historical from the 1960s!"
– Really Pretentious Fans Who Pretend They’ve Seen All The Missing Episodes And Know What They’re Talking About (2008)

"The battle between Top Gear and Pimp My Ride UK would give James Michael Straczynski sleepless nights! Well, it MIGHT. If he had insomnia. Possibly." – John Kenneth Muir (2009)

"The most mind-blowing contrast ever is listening to the actual stories, and then to the mountainous self-congratulatory back-slapping they give one another in the behind-the-scenes material. Jesus! Are they all on crack or something? This has to be the most "Did I read this fan fic online?" stories ever, being 100% generic in it's middling merge of sci-fi and moody historical with bucketloads of incoherent technobabble that manages to hang together, constricted by its desire to stick to the memes of typical Doctor Who as an anchoring point rather than trying something even halfway insane!"
– Jared "No Nickname" Hansen (2009)

"Too light, frothy and insubstantial; populated by caricatures rather than characters with stupid accents! The Eighth Doctor stories used to feel as if they were experimenting and driving the Who concept forward but now feel a bit as though they are aping the Tennant era! What happened to the brilliance of The Crimes of Fright-Night or Encase the Arseholes or, um, Zig-Zag-Gay-Ass? Actually I’ll just shut up now."
– Stephan G. Travis (2007)

"I thought it was awful. Awful, awful, awful. It thought it was big and clever and trying to say something - instead it was just tasteless and dumb. Paul McGann stands right up there with Trevor Martin, David Banks, Peter Cushing, Edmund Warwick and Terry Walsh. Because he’s NOT a proper Doctor! He’s a LIE! He was NEVER the Doctor! EVERYONE is lying! WHY WON’T YOU SEE THE SUBTEXT!" – Alan Stevens (2008)

Psychotic Nostalgia -
"You want to know a secret? I bet that you can’t guess! Yes, **I** am the Stig! I can prove it to you... but then you would have to die."

Paul McGann Speaks!
"That’s exactly it. Top Gear revealed to be a cunning plan by the Goodies to destroy English civilization. Couldn’t have put it more succinctly. In fact, I doubt I’d have tried. And we got the real cast from Top Gear. I don’t know how Big Finish afford the calibre of these casts, especially with Eddie drinking away profits like he’s been hired to assassinate his own liver. It’s got to be said, the booze is good."

Sheridan Smith Speaks!
"Me and Paul get to do new and kinky things every day I can’t tell you how much fun this job is because then you’d all get jealous and demand to know why the hell I get to enjoy myself so much AND get paid for it while the rest of you are wasting your lives in dull offices doing jobs you hate for too little cash."

Eddie Hitler Speaks!
"Top Gear? How hard can it be to do that drivel? It's all to do with who you are, with penis size and with cars. A cockroach could come up with a format like that! It’s high time it got a damn good banging by Doctor Who, ideally involving Dustbins exterminating Clarkeson. For real. In slow motion. With buckets of blood everywhere. I can’t stand Top Gear. No matter how good the cars, they always put those three wankers in front of them. Why doesn’t the Stig just KILL THEM ALL?!"

Trivia -
There isn’t any for this story. Now THAT is trivial!

Rumors & Facts -

While it can be argued that a Doctor Who/Top Gear crossover does have its good points, it can also be argued that it is complete crap. And indeed this is exactly what most normal people DO argue.

For Hitler’s second series, and indeed Paul McGann’s seventh series since 2000, it was decided that all concerned should pull together and attempt something new, something radical, something COMPLETELY different. They decided to attempt to make a decent season. There was much shock and consternation at the thought of this throughout Big Finish and numerous dubious opinion forums, but eventually permission was given to go ahead. Not that Hitler gave a tinker’s cuss what anyone else thought and, anyway, this "permission" arrived long after they’d finished and was completely bloody irrelevant anyway.

Hitler was determined that the new season try to draw attention away from its frankly abominable theme tune by having stories that were real, bleeding, meaty chunks of hardcore Phillip K Dick Sci-Fi, with logical extrapolations of how certain factors effect the world, a realistic portrayal of this world, convincing special effects, and so on and so on. Needless to say, it was all doomed from the very moment of its conception.

Unfortunately, the already-miniscule budget had a massive dent in it due to the massive drinking tabs chalked up by Hitler, McGann and Sheridan Smith, forcing the series to be made on a shoe string – and do you have ANY IDEA how much shoe strings cost?!?

In an attempt to kill two Presidents with one magic bullet, it was decided that they ideally needed a writer who would waive aside such pesky matters as payment, artistic integrity or self-respect for a sip of beer and maybe a grope of Smith’s boobs. And thus Nigella Jay Verkoff was chosen to once more write for Doctor Who after such epic failures as Fan & Phantasmagoria, Faith Dealer, Sympathy for the Devil and any other such stories I have completely forgotten about.

Verkoff was more than prepared to work for nothing but to touch the smooth and shiny surface of Sheridan’s tits, and – via a tough negotiation technique that just so happened to resemble a drinking contest with Hitler – negotiated his "fee" up to a lapdance.

In return for this, Verkoff not only wrote this story but produced it, directed it and starred in it, an effort which means it’s taken only three years of his life to date to complete this story. I believe this truly makes Verkoff stand out from all other Big Finish authors - if only for his unyielding dedication, uncontrollable megalomania and complete lack of anything approaching a social life.

The basic premise was quite simple: "if RTD can get away with having Doctor Who crossover with popular TV shows on the feeblest of pretexts, then why the fuck can’t I?"

Where the Ninth Doctor, Rose Tyler and Captain Jack Sparrow had had, in the 2005 series finale, confronted Big Brother, What Not To Wear, The Weakest Link and Ant ’n’ Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway, Verkoff decided his own story would show the Eighth Doctor and Lucie Vauxhall Nova confronting Top Gear. Since the Stig’s guest appearance in the Tenth Doctor episode Smith & Weston had set a truly disturbing precedent, there was absolutely no excuse to turn down Verkoff’s pitch.

Tragic, I know.

There’s none of the required Eighth Doctor dose of death and disaster this week, my poignant friends – just loathsome whimsy, undergraduate humor and gravitas-lacking stuff to appeal to casual and non fans, satire of Jeremy Clarkson and, curiously, a huge urge to turn the stereo off and do something else... ANYTHING ELSE!

After the horrendously camp Dead Cardiff, everyone was expecting the emphasis to vary somewhat over the next story. Unfortunately the new emphasis was set on "even MORE horrendously camp than before!" And it is with Top Gear we discover that there is a limit to how camp you can get – and this is it. Kitsch is the order of the day and we can go no further... Thank God!

I mean, don’t get me wrong – it is true that, yes, there ARE people in this world who actually enjoy this story. But so what? There ARE people in this world who actually enjoy being beaten with canes! There ARE people in this world who actually enjoy being tied up! There ARE people in this world who enjoy reading the online blog of Lawrence Miles!

It takes all sorts to make up a world, but it doesn’t mean we have to socialize with all these sad little sickos though, does it?

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