Monday, February 13, 2006

Olympics Rant....

This all will be all too familiar to Sly and Lesa....

Coverage of the Olympics here in the US *SUX*. And don't mean just NBC's TV coverage but I'll start there....

Last night, Apolo Ohno was competing in the semis of the 1500m Short Track Speed Skating (I love this event). While I understand that Ohno is the defending Gold medalist and there (used to be) was "controversy" surrounding how he won last Olympics, is that all any reason to not even bother to introduce the other 5 guys who were competing in his race? NBC made it seem like a forgone conclusion that he was going to win.

When he didn't, they replayed it 15 times. But, in the finals, with a Canadian in second or third, "something" happened and he got shuffled to fifth or sixth. They didn't even bother to replay the race, let alone the incident with the Canadian.

Downhill Skiing - with the American media treating Bode Miller's win as (another) foregone conclusion, it was with great joy I watched him ski terribly - even though the NBC "analyst" couldn't see the mistakes he was making.

Figure Skating - I'm listening to Sports Talk radio this morning on the way to work and this afternoon's Dan Patrick Show. The local morning guys actually called Michelle Kwan a "loser" for not having won a Gold medal. WTF? Don't nine National Titles, five World Titles and two Olympic medals count against that "loser" tag?

And the comments they were making about the Olympics in general - folks, if you don't understand a sport, don't make negative comments about it *especially* when you are a "Sports Talk Show Host". You end up sounding like a freaking idiot.

How is it with other nation's coverage? I know in Canada, the emphasis is not (strictly) on winning Gold. We often mention when an athlete has exceeded their personal best, even if they "only" come in 7th place. Do other nation's media fixate on winning the Gold and anything else being "losing"?

And do these people not understand what "Olympic sport" is about? It's about competing, doing your best, trying your hardest and representing your country. All this talk of getting rid of various sports (mostly because the American media don't understand the sport) is ridiculous. Just because the sport doesn't have a US based professional league doesn't mean it's not a worthwhile endeavor or even that it's not an interesting, fun sport for *somebody*.

And the fact that NBC apparently isn't showing any events live really burns my britches.

OK.....Now I'm going to start watching NBC's coverage of Curling...let's see how they butcher this....


Blogger Ryan said...

Here in Edmonton I get basically 24 hour Canadian coverage as well as coverage from NBC and some BBC station.

The Canadian and BBC coverage is MUCH more objectional. While, understandably, the CBC and TSN coverage is geared towards bolstering Canadian athletes, they don't have any qualms about supporting and profiling other nations athletes. No one cries when a Canadian doesn't win a medal they are favoured to; it's very much a case of "they did their best, maybe made some mistakes, but the winner out did them and, as the nature of sport dictates, deserves it more." Perhaps we are more logical or are just pussies. Take your choice. We probably won't argue with you.

PS- I might kick Bode Miller in the nuts if I ever meet him.

5:46 PM  
Blogger Endo said...

I gotta agree with Shawn on this one. I never bother to watch US coverage unless there is a particular American that I want to see.

This highlights a fundamental difference between the US and most other nations. The US is a nation of "winners". If you are not a "winner", you are a loser.

In Canada, if you are not a "winner", you are a competitor...not a "loser". The US network broadcasts have been getting more and more US only over the past decade. I truly feel sorry for the citizens of the US since they really don't get to see the rest of the competitors in the world.


7:40 PM  
Anonymous Chundles said...

Channel 7 have once again bollocksed-up the Winter Olympics here in Australia.

We get day-old highlights from 8:30pm till midnight despite that since it's being held on the other side of the world they could easily fill all the dead air time during the crappy infomercials with some live coverage.

Sure, it's not as popular down here as the summer games and we're not really in the race for many medals except for our girls in the aerial freestyle but still, 7 have been hyping their coverage for months now and it sucks big time.

9:47 PM  
Blogger Moon Man said...

I live in London, UK and we get great coverage from the BBC. They often mention personal bests, and seem very unbiased.

Can you even receive BBC over the pond?

7:26 AM  
Blogger Trash Talk said...

"Can you even receive BBC over the pond?"

We get BBC News locally via BBC America but the don't show nay Olympics or sports coverage at all. :(

4:16 PM  
Anonymous wedgeposse said...

I must admit that the coverage of the Winter Olympics in the UK from the BBC is pretty impresive. There's coverage on BBC2, and 5 digital channels showing coverage from 8am - midnight. I do find that the BBC are unbiased in there opinions.

7:43 PM  

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