Okay, those of you on Twitter may be tired of hearing about it by now...because I certainly wasn't alone in my NBC feelings regarding the Olympic Ceremony in London yesterday, but after a night spent reflecting (and still very much annoyed) on exactly WHY I was so bothered, for me, this was/is the best way to GET IT OUT.
Because normally I'm a pretty optimistic person, usually I'm glass-half-full, normally I can ignore trivial bothersome things (okay, that might not be accurate...I can be a little OCD) BUT, my point (I swear I have one) is that this whole broadcast pestered me to the point that my tweeting became more vicious (in my mind) than I'm comfortable with. (As sarcastsic and vicious as I get anyway...trust me, it was tame comparatively.)
SO, here's what I've concluded after a night of thought:
First off, let me state the obvious: NBC dropped the ball BIG time. I wasn't thrilled about the delay, but I understood it, it was LOGICAL, and I could deal. They were allowing for the majority of us to be able to watch it together. If only.
Truth is, they cut out bits and pieces of the ceremony that they didn't air, which still confuses me. I mean, if you're on a delay, the advantage (in my mind) would be that when you go to commercial, you don't have to miss anything. It's all a GIANT RECORDING at this point, right? But no, that would be crazy. And it wasn't just the fun, action packed parts they cut out either, but some of the Parade of Nations as well. You'd leave for commercial on one letter and come back on another later on down the line, and they'd say something like, "while you were gone, we saw XXX and XXX, and here we are at XXX."
But it got worse. Way worse.
The commentating was horrible in a way that's just, well, AWKWARD.
It was unintelligent at best, something that, during the beginning of the Opening Ceremony, as they explained what was happening on stage, made you cringe. I'm not sure if it was intentionally dumbed down or if that's just how they roll, but the vibe was more of a Macy's Day Parade broadcast than an Opening Ceremony Broadcast. There was a level of respect and awe, that for me, was vacant. It lessened the experience.
But even that wasn't the worst. The worst was reserved for the highlight of every Opening Ceremony, the Parade of Nations. Here's this huge moment of unity, of peace, of the WORLD coming together with all our differences, united, for one reason. Sure, at it's heart, it's to compete, but it's MORE than that. It's beautiful to see so many different cultures, so many different languages, all under one roof.
It's beautiful. And moving. And we should all be in awe of it.
But not NBC. No. They're commenting was more pageant style, with random facts being shouted out as each country passed, and none of the facts were given in a respectful, loving manner. None. The undertone was "We are America and we are awesome, aren't these other countries who don't have a chance cute." And that's being nice. Because none of them actually think anyone is cute. I don't know...it's hard to explain, it was just....SAD.
And the saddest part is that I don't believe it was intentional at all. I don't think NBC or the commentators themselves were trying to be offensive. I think they were clueless, and that their comments, given without much thought, embodied what is so wrong with our country.
It should've been beautiful. It should've been respectful. It should've been commentating about how great it is to have all these people come together, how great a job London was doing with the whole thing, but it just wasn't. And that was BEYOND DISAPPOINTING.
I was embarrassed. For all of us. For our country.
Okay, rant over.
The Opening Ceremony itself (sans US interference/commentary) was amazing. It was fun, it was moving, and have you seen that torch? So gorgeous, so creative, so awesome to see all those construction workers lining the hall as it was carried past. So many aspects came together for one night of beautiful entertainment. And now the games begin.
I can't wait to watch.
And next year? Maybe I'll switch to viewing the Opening Ceremony live on my computer instead of my own tv.
Anyone else watch it? Did you have a strong reaction? What did you think?