Good News, Bad News for Top Gear Fans

Prime has just announced a renewal of its BBC Worldwide deal that will see the network continue to screen Top Gear first in this territory.

The agreement also includes first-run episodes of international versions of Top Gear Australia and Top Gear US.

But with no timetable in place for Prime’s conversion to HD, Jeremy Clarkson and the crew will continue to languish in SD, except on home video – where not just the “great adventure” specials but also the series are coming out on Blu-ray.

Series 15 will be released on Blu-ray on August 17, for the same price as the DVD (Prime has just launched the 17th within a month of it going to air in HD in the UK).

Another BBC HD highlight that Prime will waste in SD is the David Attenborough series, Madagascar, while the channel continues to sit on Attenborough’s Planet Earth successor, Human Planet, which is delaying its Blu-ray release here (it went on sale across the Tasman in May).

Meanwhile, Prime is picking up two notable dramas from the BBC: Case Sensitive: The Point of Rescue, a psychological thriller of identity, guilt and the dark side of motherhood, starring Olivia Williams (An Education) and Darren Boyd (Green Wing); and Silk, a fast-paced legal drama starring Maxine Peake (Little Dorrit) and Rupert Penry-Jones (Spooks, Whitechapel).

While both will air in SD, it’s possible Lace may win a Blu-ray release given next month Roadshow NZ will distribute on the format two more of Prime’s UK dramas: Strike Back and Doctor Who: Series 6 – Part 1.

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2 Responses to “Good News, Bad News for Top Gear Fans”

  1. It’s a real pity that Prime doesn’t go HD with DD5.1 sound but I suspect that Hell will freeze over before Sky lets it go HD on the Freeview|HD platform …

  2. Agreed. Meanwhile, I have joined the many who no longer watch Top Gear etc in miserable SD.

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