Let the Games Begin!

Let the Games Begin!

0 2130

Go China!I’m pretty excited for the Olympics to get going tonight (actually, later this morning).

Just this week my wife and I were talking about how we haven’t been watching much television lately. We don’t watch anything in prime time actually. (No, the conversation never turned anywhere near the idea of canceling cable to save money…)

But starting tonight, I think we’ll have something somewhat interesting to watch every night of the week! That is, if NBC doesn’t over sensationalize every single thing an American athlete does or has done…

I’m not really interested about how Amanda Beard loves animals, hates China, and likes to pose nude. I could really care less. The Olympics aren’t the place to go out and make a political statement or stage a protest. And she’s a freakin’ competitor?! Just jump in the pool and swim — in a regular bathing suit…

My first experience of unbiased Olympic coverage was back in 1992 for the Albertville Winter Games. At the time, I was in Germany and the television coverage was far from all German, all the time — even though they were speaking German.

It didn’t leave a huge impression on me back then, but for the last Summer Games in Athens, we happened to be in Canada and CBC’s coverage brought the memories rushing back.

It was… refreshing.

In response to NBC’s alleged over-reporting of the US athletes, Bob Costas recently responded, “Are Americans somewhat more interested in American performers? Of course they are, but we don’t insult the intelligence of the audience. They’re interested in any good story where ever it may appear.”

Okay, Bob… But, NBC does insult the intelligence of the audience.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen Team Handball on NBC’s prime time coverage. Could it be because the United States is terrible at the sport? Do they forbid televising an event where the Americans get crushed or fail to even show up?

I dunno, the NBC coverage gets a little boring and old when you just keep on seeing one American after another win gold. That’s fine though, I’d agree that stuff should be covered. It’s a huge accomplishment.

But really, there aren’t that many events at the Olympics and they should probably show *every* medal winning performance whether an American is on the podium or not.

I’d appreciate that.

I doubt that I’m alone.

Based on their past coverage, to the casual fan, the US has apparently pitched a shutout against the world.

I mean, would it hurt to show, I dunno, the gold medal game in Team Handball between Denmark and South Korea? At the very least, it might enlighten a few of the geography-challenged out there.

I’m only using Team Handball as an example because it’s one of those games that I don’t even really understand, but it’s a fascinating thing to see. It’s fast, it’s rough, and it’s exciting. And every single one of the players is anonymous to me. That alone disqualifies its entertainment value for NBC, it seems.

NBC doesn’t seem to understand that to make great television, the public doesn’t need some sob-story background on the athlete from the wrong side of the tracks who’s bound for glory. I know I don’t need that.

I’d be perfectly happy if I never heard the names Michael Phelps, Dara Torres, on Shawn Johnson again…

And the games haven’t even started yet!?

Can you say, overexposed?