Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Open Season on Peacock
I'll admit, I'm somebody who complains A LOT about the shortcomings, quirks, and inequities in TV sports coverage.
Just listen to me. Like I'm some kind of expert. Sheesh.
Then again, I can't help it. It's like the inner director in me comes out, and I start bellyaching about all the camera angles, replays, and action I would have shown, instead of that bum in the network truck calling the shots.
I'm certainly not alone. Like anybody who sits IN FRONT of the boob tube, we all think that mastery of a remote is just one step short of being Roone Arledge.
So this may shock some of you, but I think NBC is doing a fabulous job of televising the Olympics.
"You're doin' a heck of a job, Peacock."
I mean it.
Sure, the network is losing their ass on these games financially. But that's due to a bid for the rights born of a much different non-recessionary time than now.
The complaints I have been hearing, are some of the most tired, predictable, and stupid ones I hear all the time.
"There's not enough action!"
"Too much studio time!"
"I hate the shmaltzy features!"
Happens just about every Olympics.
And don't get me started on the whole tape delay thing. Sure, NBC could show live events on their cable outlet during the day, WHEN they happen. Sure, NBC.com could stream that action live on the web. Sure they could charge for all of that.
They tried it. Olympics Triplecast. Google it. Not a raging success.
Only a junkie needs to see EVERY downhill run, every minute of a cross country ski race, or every ski jump. Speaking of which, doesn't anybody wipe out anymore on ski jumping? I'm not looking for more Eddie "The Eagle" Edwardses, but a little bit more than one perfect jump and landing after another would be nice.
And for anybody that thinks the USA-Canada hockey game should have been on NBC1 instead of MSNBC, you are nuts. I too love hockey, but it's ratings death. These games as presented by NBC finally ended American Idol's 222 night winning streak last Wednesday.
Sure it took Linday Vonn winning the downhill, and the fact that most of us KNEW that fact ahead of time to do it, but still. It's not like NBC doesn't have a clue.
The Winter Olympics are a delicious sampler platter of events and sports that we otherwise wouldn't give a crap about. I for one, have been savoring them.
And NBC's coverage has been fantastic in terms of artistic merit. The high definition has been stellar, and the super slo-mo replays sensational.
The camera angles, replays, and techno-gadgetry of the downhill and super-G races was nothing short of a visual orgy.
What, NBC gets no credit for this?
I think too many people very much over-rate the notion of more "action" instead of what is sometimes called "fluff."
Personally, the feature on injured snowboarder Kevin Pearce, his family, and his recovery was better than anything I've seen on TV in a long time.
So let the record show, I don't complain about everything. And NBC's Football Night In America remains a goat-sodomizing mess. But as for these games and NBC: good job, carry on!