Customer Review

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still a great adventure!, 11 Nov 2008
This review is from: Long Way Down - Special Edition (3 Discs, 10 Episodes) [DVD] [2008] (DVD)
I only bought this DVD after watching the first few episodes on NatGeo. I didn't plan on watching it after reading the bad reviews here. But I loved Long Way Round and knew I just had to watch these two guys again.

The first big criticism abt this series must be Eve's (Ewan's wife) out-of-the-blue decision to join them. As a woman I was slightly embarrassed for her because she had never even ridden a motorcycle before! It didn't help that Ewan was gleeful of the prospect and I felt exactly what Charlie must have felt - oh gooooooood! It all seemed like too much of an indulgence on Ewan's side and Eve looked like a clueless and spoilt, bored housewife. However, what most reviewers did not say is that she only joined for a short section of the journey - thankfully on a realistically easy route from Malawi. Despite my earlier apprehension, I have to say that she did remarkably well and didn't whine and whinge despite falling off her bike riding on the sand. And everyone was very gracious about her being there. That said, I did think it was a bit much to have Charley riding on his own (on one section) while Ewan took Eve on an easier route. But Charley was a real sport and didn't bitch about it, which I though showed why he and Ewan are best mates. If the McGregor decide to go on another bike trip together, they should save it for a trip all on its own. Leave the two lads to go on with their own adventure!!

Second criticism about the show being too commercial is I think being a tad unfair considering how much it must cost to embark on such a journey. Despite the trip being on the poorest continent in the world, the places they stayed at (lodges and hotels) charge prime rate (unless they're all part of the freebies). No one claimed that they were going to do this on backpacker's budget! But neither was it Hollywood-budget!

The thing that stuck to me the most was that there was a bit when Charley and Ewan had a huge bust up which they decided not to show on film. I was in two minds about this. One one hand I think it was a relief they didn't go the "reality tv" route and air all their dirty laundry - this kept the dignity and integrity of the show I think. But on the other hand, it was a missed opportunity and the programme after that just seemed to skim the surface of their friendship. We see them laughing and joking a lot but it certainly would have been intriguing to see another side to their relationship. Still, all credit to them for kissing and making up!

The second and third leg of the journey were certainly more "involved" - the first leg (from Scotland to Sudan) was them just plowing through. But I liked that they realised this hence they took more time to see and experience Africa afterwards. I did think the arrival in Cape Town was a bit of an anti-climax. Not sure why but it just seemed that way. And why do we see Charley reunited with his wife and kids, but no Eve for Ewan? No one mentioned this at all. Just seemed another production hole!

I liked the extras but I wished they had done the same (as they did for Long Way Round) and did reactions about the trip months afterward (not just about the various charities they got involved with afterwards). I would have liked to hear more about Eve's involvement in the trip and hear if she thought it was a good idea and would she continue biking! Even going on a trip herself!

I love love love Ewan and Charlie because I think they are such decent and fun fun chaps!! Sooooo looking forward to Long Way Up!!! And they still have India and South East Asia to tackle!
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