Author Topic: James May's Cars of the People  (Read 27009 times)

DaveMiller

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2014, 12:29:34 pm »

Why wouldn't he mention Tatra in context to it being an integral part of the VW beetle story?

I suppose because he's not aiming to tell "the VW story" - he's concerning himself with the concept of a people's car, and the effect it had on the people.  He branched out into the bits about Hitler and Kraft durch Freude because those make it more interesting/funny/scary to the general public, in a way that technical and design tie-ups might not.  You and I might find the technical background fascinating - but then we have microcars, and are by that definition not the general public!

I quite agree, though, about destroying cars - any car - for the sake of it: a lapse back into Top Gear mode.  Surely the "worse" a car was, the more we want to maintain the history?

Bob Purton

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2014, 12:39:51 pm »
The general public love a good scandal, I think the Tatra bit would have gone down well on that basis alone without touching on technical issues.. Anyway, he didn't so that's that.

Although I agree with Al I cant really see how we can control what the program makers say.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2014, 01:13:21 pm by Bob Purton »

Rusty Chrome (Malcolm Parker)

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #17 on: August 13, 2014, 12:54:36 am »
Nothing to do with microcars, but if you want to see a decent documentary that covers an engineering topic and shows how it should be done, don't miss the recent "Mechanical Marvels: Clockwork Dreams" programme about automata presented by Professor Simon Schaffer.
Malcolm
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Big Al

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2014, 10:38:34 am »
Although I agree with Al I cant really see how we can control what the program makers say.

Two word answer as an example. Bubblecar jousting.

The background to that was an idle comment I made that it was easy to get on television if you wanted. It just needed the brains to do it. I was bet I could not do so. So I invented Bubblecar jousting, as the BUMS were happy to participate. We then sold this into the TV media as a traditional past time, total fabrication of course. It resulted in three filming sessions and a number of appearances on television. Several within the 6 month period stipulated, but I only got paid out once the bet, reluctantly I might add.
From the directors point of view this was tailor made and highly televisual. What need to add silly comments? Therefore the entire thing was filmed as we wanted it, save that for Pulling Power the Messerschmitt had to loose as the MOC pissed the director off (They were filming them on the same day). I was a far better jouster than Mike so my helmet was seeded with taped on drawing pins! I was happy for the Trojan to win, though, as I agreed with the Director. We even supplied the camera car, Mahari!
Transpose the situation to a more serious approach, dig out the odd and interesting facts and features, apply intelligence and skill, and appoint a personality as the Microcar production representative with the power to direct. The Director can either follow the prescribed and agreed agenda or he can piss off. Reason is simple as without control the TV camera takes over and any event becomes unmanageable. I have seen it happen, anyone at Malvern has seen it happen. This is totally achievable with the right people. Sadly it calls for the sort of long term planning and joined up thinking that seems rather lacking in the microcar world currently and I am not volunteering. Nor am I greatly interested in being in front of the camera.

That said I have got an idea that could involve creating a film to be sold. Something for when I have less work on and a reliable Microcar. If it happens it would probably involve some invited guests who know there stuff and can speak well, like Grant. Who knows what that could lead too. As things are there is a yawning gap in the market. 
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
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DaveMiller

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2014, 01:05:39 pm »
So ... A TV programme based on silly misuse of cars, with the focus on the potential for disaster and injury, the situation made up, and what happens actually a lie?

Bright idea, Al.  You could call it ... ooh ... Top Gear? ;D

Big Al

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2014, 01:15:33 pm »
Why do people insist on deliberately misunderstanding information put before them? You cannot educate pork.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
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For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

steven mandell

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #21 on: August 16, 2014, 08:44:21 am »
Speak of the devil.
This beauty  just drove across my path on the streets of Monterey today.

NickPoll

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #22 on: August 16, 2014, 12:30:32 pm »
In response to Marcus's post. the name "Mercedes Benz" first appeared on a car in 1926. The early cars from the late 1800's were "Benz". The first Mecedes was made made in 1901 ( I think ). A chap called Emil Jellinec ordered a batch of racing cars built to his own design from the Daimler Motorworks. He specified all the technical details. He had them named after his daughter Mecedes. Thank god they weren't called Jellinecs !
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Bob Purton

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #23 on: August 17, 2014, 01:19:58 pm »


Well here is what James May really thinks of our cars

"“If you’re a regular viewer of Top Gear, you might be a bit disappointed that this programme is full of stupid, small cars,” admits James May. “But I have to say, I’m enjoying myself immensely.”

And so he is, piloting a range of more or less daft microcars like the Peel Trident and the Messerschmitt Tiger – cars created essentially to let people without a licence drive a (sort of) car – and look, as May says, like berks.

He spends a bit too long on this design cul-de-sac, but things get more interesting when he moves on to the classically French 2CV and Renault 4. Which sold more, do you think? And for that matter, what would be the biggest selling vehicle of all time? Answer: a Honda moped.


They are all stupid and people that drive them are berks!
Still glad you lent your car to make this programme????

 




richard

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #24 on: August 17, 2014, 09:04:49 pm »
Let's see then but I have reservations - recording it for later Richard the Third programme holds more attractions for me right now
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Bob Purton

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #25 on: August 17, 2014, 10:33:28 pm »
Well it wasn't as insulting as it could have been. Peels and sans permis cars are awful so they deserved it. 2cv and Renault four part was reasonably informative but he then wasted 15 mins on blowing them up! Moron!
Another 15 mins about the Honda 50 scooterette which isn't a car of the people!
Still I was softened to the prog as there was a good shot of me and Alan Budd driving Thumper on the national road run. He was at least quite complimentary about Isetta's.

blob

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #26 on: August 18, 2014, 12:10:17 pm »
I liked the historical 2Cv stuff, including the 5 second shot of a prototype being lifted out of a loft. Apart from that it was usual Top Gear' fare! Nice shots of the Japenese lineup especially the Mazda, though would have been nice to include the Flying Feather or Fuji Cabin when reminiscing over Japans past attempts. Needless to say I hated the stupid electric Peel bit of PR into the back of a Transit.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 08:46:54 pm by blob »

marcus

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #27 on: August 18, 2014, 12:44:58 pm »
Agree with Rusty Chrome about the Mechanical Marvels show, absolutely superb, and no flippant/trendy insults. I was away and missed part 2, sounds like I did not miss much.

How much is down to May and how much is down to producer I do not know, but BBC hows some fascinating programmes about all manner of things from ocean liners, trains and trams to Egyptian remains, weather and fossils, all covered with respect and interest.  However, as soon as CARS are the subject matter all interest and objectivity has to make way for cynicism and contempt.

If they cannot think of anything positive to say about the programme's subject matter, I wish they would just not make the programe!
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Bob Purton

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #28 on: August 18, 2014, 01:36:01 pm »
The motoring programme makers appear to have nurtured an audience of petrol heads that are more interested in blowing things up or dropping from helicopters than they are in learning some facts. Now, that's what they expect to see. Very sad!
Its still worth seeing on iplayer though Marcus for the interesting bits.
The biggest irony is that at the National I was totally against them having free range of the site and the cars to make the programme, guessing it was going to be another Top Gear type shame, and out of all the camera hungry crawlers there trying to get into the programme via offering there cars etc who's is the only recognizable face to appear in the whole sequence? Yours truly!  ::) ;D

marcus

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Re: James May's Cars of the People
« Reply #29 on: August 18, 2014, 01:49:28 pm »
^ Ironic!
Just remember: as one door closes behind you, another slams in your face