What hap­pened next

The Daily Telegraph - Telegraph Magazine - - Celia Walden - Chris Evans / Top Gear

Oc­to­ber 2016 Five months in, Chris Evans’s re­vamped Top Gear is ham­pered by mys­te­ri­ous calami­ties – the wrong fuel in the cars, sev­ered brake cables and poi­son in the pro­ducer’s por­ridge. Evans ac­cuses the new Stig – a shad­owy, beer-bel­lied 6ft 5in cur­mud­geon – of be­ing be­hind the crimes. In a vi­cious fst fght, Evans tears off the Stig’s hel­met and rac­ing suit to re­veal a grey perm, denim and Ama­zon-branded un­der­wear. ‘You!’ Evans screeches, be­fore be­ing knocked out cold.

April 2018 With an in­junc­tion pre­vent­ing Jeremy Clark­son from ap­proach­ing the set, Top Gear fnally lurches to suc­cess. Des­per­ate BBC ex­ec­u­tives soon ap­ply its novel pre­sent­ing for­mula (of com­bin­ing Ra­dio 2 DJs with weary American sit­com ac­tors) across the board. In a se­ries of risky ap­point­ments, new pre­sen­ters of Strictly Come Danc­ing are un­veiled as Ken Bruce and Ted Dan­son (from Cheers), while The One Show gains Kelsey Gram­mer and Vanessa Feltz.

July 2021 Top Gear is stifed by po­lit­i­cal up­heaval when Jeremy Cor­byn surges to power in 2020. With all cars banned and roads con­verted into al­lot­ment­bor­dered cy­cling su­per­high­ways, Evans and Matt LeBlanc are forced to pose in sta­tion­ary ve­hi­cles and imag­ine what they might be like to drive. Af­ter one se­ries, the pro­gramme is re­placed by Top Fixed Gear, a Cor­byn-ap­proved cy­cling al­ter­na­tive. Guy Kelly

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