‘Warm’ return praised by TV critics

The Guardian’s Tim Dowling is among the critics welcoming the return of Top Gear with its new hosts – racing driver Chris Harris, retired cricketer Freddie Flintoff and comic Paddy McGuinness.”There was likeability as the hosts opened the show,” reported Digital Spy’s Alistair McGeorge.The Telegraph’s Michael Hogan said the presenters’ “chemistry was immediate, their camaraderie warm”.Overnight viewing figures showed an average of 2.54 million viewers which represented a 12.7% share of the audience, making it  Two’s most watched programme of the day.By comparison, the launch of the previous series of Top Gear drew an overnight average audience of 1.97 million in February.The second-highest rating  on Sunday was The Ranganation, with an average of 1.1m.”The larky, bad-tempered chemistry that existed between [Jeremy] Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond has been replicated in a slightly sunnier form,” added the Guardian’s review.The show has gone through several line-up changes since Clarkson was droppedand May and Hammond left with him in 2015.Former Radio 2 host Chris Evans tried and failed to impress viewers while former Friends star Matt LeBlanc came on board for a couple of seasons, announcing his departure in 2018.When people saw the names, they probably went, ‘hang on, a cricketer and a comedian?'” Harris told this month.But why not? If you had three people like me, people would fall asleep. I think we’re a good, broad team, we cover lots of bases.

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