With all the changes being made on Top Gear, it’s nice to see that there are still some things that haven’t changed. Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond may no longer be around, but at least we’re still getting Top Gear’s Christmas Special.

The announcement was made by BBC, which said that the annual two-part Christmas extravaganza will continue this year, albeit with a different format. No, we’re not going to see the lovable trio embarking on a never-before seen adventure. We’re not even going to see Chris Evans and the new Top Gear hosts. Instead, the BBC will use the Christmas Special as a celebration of sorts, dedicated to some of the most memorable moments Clarkson, May, and Hammond had in the 13 years they spent as the faces of the world’s biggest motoring show.

The two episodes will be called “Top Gear: From A-Z” and will feature a lot of footage that didn’t make it in any of the past Top Gear episodes. There will also be insider facts and quirky statistics that a lot of fans of the show have never been privy too. Simply put, "Top Gear: From A-Z" will be chronicling some of the silliest moments from the show in the past 13 years. As an added treat, the show will run in alphabetical order, hence the “A-Z” in the name. John Bishop will serve as the voice of the episode and past guest stars of the show will each introduce a letter to commemorate a specific highlight from the show’s past.

It may not be the traditional Christmas Special we’ve come to love in the past, but with all the changes on the show, it’s probably the next best thing. At least we’ll still get one last hurrah of Top Gear from the era of Clarkson, May, and Hammond. That in itself makes this year’s Christmas Special a must-watch.

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Why it matters

On the one hand, I’m excited to see the show just so I can see Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond on Top Gear one last time. It’s not the kind of format I’d like to see, but I’ll take what I can get considering how the show’s Christmas Special has become a staple in my holiday TV schedule for the past few years.

On the other hand, I understand why some people are criticizing the BBC for its perceived intention of milking the continued popularity of the three presenters, even if all three are no longer employed by the network. Clarkson, May, and Hammond are currently busy filming their new motoring show on Amazon Prime. Same thing with Chris Evans, who will take the helm as the lead presenter of the revamped Top Gear when it returns to television in 2016.

There’s a part of me that thinks that BBC is using the names of the three former presenters to generate strong ratings in what traditionally is a competitive time for British television. I don’t know if any of the three will try to block the airing of the episode since all the rights belong the network. But given the personalities of the people involved, I certainly wouldn’t be shocked if that happens.

Whatever the case may be, I’m not going to complain too much about this two-part episode. I’ll still watch it, and I’m pretty sure that a lot of people will too.

Source: BBC

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