If TopGear Tested Heelys Shoe Skates


TopGear, the outrageous UK racing program, tests the power of vehicles with bizarre stunts and offbeat humor.

Over the years, presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May have raced across Vietnam during rainy season on vintage motorcycles... Skimmed America's Salt Flats in taped-together 70s muscle cars... Crossed dangerous terrain in Africa in 60s roadsters... And transformed trucks into sailing ships.

But they've never tested Heelys-- the athletic shoe/roller skate hybrid that's taken grade-schoolers by storm...

Until now. (Only not really, because if this were an actual show transcript, they'd spend most of it custom-making Heelys to fit Mr. Clarkson.)

Jeremy Clarkson: Welcome to TopGear. For this episode, our producers have offered the challenge to beat all challenges... We are to leave BBC Studios, go around the corner to the local pub, and pick up lunch... all while rolling in Heelys.

Richard Hammond: And what's more, we're up against some very tough competition.

Out steps three gritty-looking primary school children in uniforms, popping gum and giving steely stares.

James May: Whoever gets to the pub and back first, wins.

Jeremy Clarkson: With one catch. We're allowed to soup-up our Heelys in any way we like.

Cut to the trio of presenters outside at the TopGear racing track. They are all examining their shiny new Heelys.

Jeremy: You know what these need?... Rockets.

Richard: That'll never work.

Jeremy: Of course, it will. I saw it done once.

Richard: On a Warner Brothers cartoon? The coyote blew up, if you recall.

James: I hate to say this, Jeremy, but Hammond's right. The physics would be all wrong. See, the weight of the rocket, evenly-distributed to each leg, would hamper mobility but...

Forty minutes later...

James: ...And that's why we'll be pouring you into a sippy cup.

But soon, the Heelys have been transformed. We see the snarling school children have added sparkly shoe laces, stickers and wheel oil.

Jeremy, Richard and James, meanwhile, have added compressed air cans, spoilers, and remote control car motors, respectively.

Richard: (to Jeremy) Compressed air? Are you racing or cleaning your computer keyboard? What happened to your rockets?

Jeremy: I found it wouldn't work without setting my legs on fire. I am right now standing on my new prosthetic legs. What about James' remote control car motors?

James: (looking happy with himself) This is ideal because it doesn't rely on power from me.

Richard: So you don't, in fact, plan to skate at all.

James: No need to.

So the contestants step up to the race line, the signal is sounded and...

Our three presenters, tangled and tripped up, topple over in a pile of wheels and flying parts. James' one Heelys motor does roll off without him, earning fourth place.

Cut to the Test Track. Jeremy Clarkson has a sneaker tread-shaped bruise on his forehead:

Jeremy: And now, we'll test the speed of the Heelys against the other high-performance vehicles on our board. But for that, we'll need our Tame Racing Driver.

Some say, he raises antelopes for profit... And only eats tinned tuna for breakfast. All we know is he's called The Stig.

Out steps "The Stig," the impressive white-clad helmeted expert racing driver. On the Stig's feet, instead of his normal white driving wear, are a pair of cheerful Heelys with a pink Hello Kitty motif.

At the signal, the Stig takes off around the track.

Jeremy: (looking at a stopwatch) Well, it's slower than the Zonda.

(Skating, skating...The Stig is listening to prog rock music in a Ipod as he goes...)

James: (peers at Jeremy's watch) It's slower than the Honda Jazz.

(Around the tire obstacle...)

Richard: Okay, it's slower than the G-Wiz. (looking at watch) How long is this program?

James: (calling to the Stig) Put some effort into it, man!

Jeremy: And on that bombshell, that's all the time we have.

(I know, I know-- it was all just a totally gratuitous post--- and a bit early for my regular Friday schedule, but I'm off that day. Thanks for indulging me, folks!)
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24 comments:

Da Old Man said...

Was this a paid post for Heelys?

*snicker*

In the tutoring center where I worked, they had to outlaw them because the kids were zipping around the room and making the teachers crazy. Ok, more crazy than usual in some cases.

Have a nice day off.

Jenn Thorson said...

Da Old Man- I actually had to look up what they were called. "Sneaker-shoe-wheel-thing-not-quite-roller-skates" wasn't really cutting it. :)

I can totally see why tutoring centers and other schools would ban them, though.

And every now and then, when I'm at the mall and some kid seems to almost levitate by...

It freaks me right the heck out. :)

Hindleyite said...

It's weird seeing all the kids slide around on trainers. I was considering getting some, but my doctor advised me not to as my feet would fall off.

Also, WordArt for the win, dudes!

C.B. Jones said...

I think the Stig would prefer black Heely's with pink neon lights and spinners on the site, as opposed to the default.

Jenn Thorson said...

Hindleyite- Ah, yes- Word Art-- the key to quick, nice-looking-ish titles for the design-challenged! WOOO!!! :)

C.B. Jones- Yes, I would imagine he might have-- but you know, the budget would only allow for so much. :)

Shawn said...

I was a kid too early. I should have very much liked a pair of roller skate tennis shoes. I didn't even like to go skating, but I think I would have liked these.

Cute love Quotes said...

I was considering getting some, but my doctor advised me not to as my feet would fall off.Love your Blog

LiLu said...

I hate those things as kids regularly try to run me over with them... but I would totally watch a race with them!

Susan of ThinkThinks said...

Love the Top Gear parody. Does the humour potential for this show never end?

As for the shoes, I agree that it's disconcerting to have kids glide past. My annoyance is probably largely fueled by the fact that I know that I wouldn't so much glide as fall-over all the time if I was wearing them.

Jenn Thorson said...

Shawn- They do look like a lot of fun. I recall vividly falling down a lot when doing regular roller skating. But as these only have one wheel a piece, I think I might be able to handle it.

Cute Love Quotes- Hm, where have I heard that phrase before... er, could it be Hindleyite's comment just a few above yours, word for word?

LiLu- Oh, I know. I can see why they've been banned from schools, etc. Can ya imagine a room of kids with them?

Susan- Ah, someone else who knows the show! I knew I was taking a risk by talking about it, since not everyone's seen it, but it really is TOO FUN not to share. (Or, maybe I need to watch less BBCAmerica)

Every time kids glide past with these shoes I feel like I've walked into the Exorcist or somethin'. :)

Prefers Her Fantasy Life said...

I'm not even going to try to make a witty comment about this post. But I must say, Jenn, your choice of topics is the most versatile of anyone out there. You rock (and roll).

Jenn Thorson said...

Meg- Well, "variety is the spice of life," I always say...

It's got sort of a curry-flavor. :)

Karen said...

I really hate those wheelie shoes. Everytime I see a kid trying to 'cool dude' it down the sidewalk in a pair (back leg pushing, front leg out steering), I do my very best to trip the little fu*ker up. Like kids aren't annoying enough ALREADY. Really, I should probably force the inventors of these abominations to wear them to work daily till they break a major bone, wearing T-shirts that proclaim..."I Invented Heelies, And I AM SO SORRY".

Jenn Thorson said...

Karen- Heh, methinks I brought up a bit of a sore subject. :)

Skye said...

Oh I do so hate those heely's! I do believe they've been banned in the malls and most stores around here, kids seem to get into too much trouble wearing them!

Jenn Thorson said...

Skye- I was in an antique mall not long ago when a kid glided by in them. Talk about a bull in a china shop-- what a scary combination. Heelys and 100-year-old glassware.

Chaotically Calm said...

Ha ha- I wish I had a pair of heelys. Personally I think it would bring a light schoolyard air to the office and begin to pull that stick out of the behinds of the stiff shirts in the office. Of course this is just my thought, if not I could always skate/walk around the mall.

Jenn Thorson said...

Faith- You know, I can totally see you doing that, too.

The looks on the faces of your office colleagues...

You merrily gliding unnaturally by their desks...

No question. It's an episode of "The Office" waiting to happen.

The Mother said...

I think Mythbusters should give this one a go...

Margo said...

Hello Kitty sparkly heelys? Not even that would make me allow those in my house. I was almost run down by a four foot urchin in those at Costco a few years back.I must check out this show.

Jenn Thorson said...

Mother- Oh dear-- is that good or bad? :)

Margo- Heh, given your sense of humor, I think you would like the program, actually, quite a bit. You don't have to be a car buff-- it's sort of like The Amazing Race plus tons of Monty Python.

Dashery Jewelry said...

Have to love the Hello Kitty ones on The Stig!

Tiggy said...

Hello Kitty Heelys! Want!

Jenn Thorson said...

Dashery Jewelry- Ya think he'd be a good sport about 'em? :)

Tiggy- You I can totally see wheeling around in Hello Kitty heelys... knocking over the other humor bloggers... zipping around malls creating havoc...

Oh yeah, I have YOUR number, Miss Tiggy. :)