Saw some of the closing ceremonies last night. There was some good stuff, some very bad stuff. I was commenting during the show that it must be hard to walk the fine line between a show that has is entertaining to a broad range of people and one that looks like a giant "Up With People" show. I didn't see anything that was as cool as the drummers and karate guys from the opening ceremonies. Here's the hits and misses:
Hit: Guys hanging off the tower. How does someone think of this and then convince someone else that this will work?
Miss: Opera and Pop music. The kids looked like Up With People. The opera singers...well, I just didn't think it worked.
Hit: The kids. Always a hit to have adorable, smiling little mugs everywhere.
Miss: Hundreds in costumers. I couldn't help but wonder that some of these people spent a lot of time putting on very complex costumes that could not be seen by those in the stadium and were only seen in a 1.5 second passing on TV.
Hit: The fireworks and pyro. Top notch. It's as if the Chinese said: 4th of July? America? Hell, we invented fireworks. We make all the fireworks in the world. THIS is how you do fireworks!!! Brilliant. Every Olympics should just subcontract the fireworks to whoever was in charge in Beijing.
Miss: Any athelete that misses the closing ceremonies. I could see people skipping the opening ceremony because they have an event coming up the next day or they want to stay focused. But why miss the end? You're finished with competing and likely don't have anything big coming up for a while. And it's one of the biggest, most unique parties you'll every be invited to. I don't get atheletes that leave before the closing ceremonies. If I was done on the second day of the Olympics, I'd stick around and soak up as much as possible. Get tickets to other competitions, use my Olympic cache to land privelaged sightseeing opportunities. And, if I were young and single like most of them are, party my ass off and try to meet global girls. What's with rushing to get home?