But that was an asset, not a liability. And I only realised that when I began watching The Grand Tour after accidentally agreeing to a free trial of Amazon Prime.
In The 48 Laws of Power, the 46th law is “Never Appear Too Perfect.” The author, Robert Greene, elaborates:
“Appearing better than others is always dangerous, but most dangerous of all is to appear to have no faults or weaknesses. Envy creates silent enemies. It is smart to occasionally display defects, and admit to harmless vices, in order to deflect envy and appear more human and approachable. Only gods and the dead can seem perfect with impunity.”
Amazon, by taking the core of Top Gear and making it better, have created something worse. By smoothing the rough edges they’ve created a show too polished to resonate with its audience.
The lesson to take from this is that imperfections add something intangible to the value of a thing. That a defect, far from representing a weakness, can actually be a strength. That something without weakness, without failings, is seen as artificial and treated as such. After all, we humans aren’t perfect, so it’s no wonder we find it hard to relate to something that is flawless.