Saturday, February 20, 2010

Halfway Through Vancouver

Well, we are halfway through the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. It's been a fantastic event for the U-S team, picking up so many medals you'd swear it was the Summer Olympics.
There's also general agreement from TV viewers that while they're watching the games in record numbers (ha-ha Simon Cowell), they wish they were in Canada, where several different channels are showing everything live. Sure, there is the overnight review, but it's bigger.
NBC is clearly a couple of years behind in how to present the games, especially when it can be shown live. Three times in the past week, NBC underestimated how long an event would take place. One was the opening ceremonies, and that couldn't be helped. Another was the men's figure skating final. Again, that couldn't be helped because some genius thought it was a good idea to end that event, plus the medal ceremony, after midnight eastern time. That's why we should give the gold medal to Comcast On Demand because it was smart enough to have those events available for those who retire early. It would be even better if it publicized that fact. After all, it's thisclose to owning NBC anyway. Why not go that far?

I'm trying to make the new catch phrase I registered, "Vonncusover", popular. That, of course, is combining Vancouver, Lindsey Vonn and Julie Mancuso into one word. The fact the two girls have four medals between them, with three events to go, should make this weird word popular somehow. Maybe it doesn't flow as much as "Vonncouver", but you have to remember Mancuso, too, since she's setting a record for most Alpine medals for any American. If she take another gold Wednesday, I just might make enough to cover the costs of registering "Vonncusover" for sale...including the t-shirt I made for myself.

An unlikely star in these games is fake conservative knucklehead, and genuine Olympic benefactor, Stephen Colbert. It is a crying shame the CBC doesn't have these games. Otherwise, seeing Rick Mercer (Canada's answer to Jon Stewart and Bill Maher combined) and Colbert squaring off would have been bigger than any U-S-Canada hockey clash. Colbert has been a hit during the late-night show, especially when he "warmed himself up" by crawling into the fake fireplace with Bob Costas watching. Oh, and his stuffed moose and Mountie uniform have been getting noticed, too. That's what happens when you do something stupid like ask your fans to help fund the Speed Skating team after one of its big sponsors goes bankrupt--and they do! Not even Fox News can claim that.

The second half should have its moments, like the ladies' figure skating final, and the finals in curling and hockey, plus more skiing. It's already a great games for the Americans. It's just a matter of how much greater they can be.
Sadly, we West Coast fans will just have to wait our turn to see them, because Dick Ebersol says we prefer to see the Olympics tape-delayed...while forgetting there are such things as Twitter and TiVos...and Comcast On Demand.

I think when the Summer games start in London in 2012, there will be an option to see the events live, the major ones anyway, and people will be happy to pay for it. It can be the first reason people will pay for a special Hulu subscription and be glad about it. After all, it works for pro teams.

One more thing: the Olympics should be uncernsored. If there aren't any obscene words being said add some. Works for Mad Men...and Shaun White.
Also, whose idea was it to use that seems to be an Olympic Titantron to introduce the participants in the half-pipe? Did Vince McMahon through some bucks to the IOC?

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