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Thread: Olympic Commentators

  1. #46
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    Count me in also as rather pleased with the commentary of David, Jamie, and Liz. Liz came across as slightly amateurish or "informal" in some of her comments, but did come across knowledgeable, appreciative/sympathetic, and well-prepared. She loves Johnny Weir, btw, for you Americans annoyed at him being sligthed by Scott and Sandra.

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnNewEngland View Post
    I agree. She's obviously very knowledgeable and experienced, but there's something about her voice that I just dislike. That, and the way she dominates the commentating.

    On another note, does anyone know why Dorothy Hamill isn't a commentator? I think she'd be awesome.
    Dorothy actually did do some commentating for some of the Grand Prix events maybe 10 years ago or so, and she's not bad. She's rather ladylike in the Peggy mode, but she actually tries to convey a some of her knowledge. For example, instead of just saying that so-and-so's footwork is really good (or "INSANE!!!!" a la Scott), she'd actually explain why somebody's footwork is really good when it's not obvious, i.e. pointing out that they're doing something unusual and difficult that you might not otherwise notice.

    I also get annoyed when Sandra and Scott get overly down on somebody based on their costume before they've even started. Seriously? Can't you even let them start skating before you start?

  3. #48
    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
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    I'm delighted, but also shocked and awed that Scott and Sandra have, so far, kept quiet through most performances. Commentator yapping so often spoils the mood the skaters and their music create. I'm glad S and S have learned to STFU, or perhaps my wish of a muting disease came partially true.

  4. #49
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    Am I the only one who likes Scott and Sandra? They love skating and skaters, and they each have insights that add to my understanding of what's going on. They've both been rather quieter this year, but if Scott wants to be enthusiastic, he's certainly earned that right. Sandra is not just a former skater but a choreographer, so her commentary on details of people's programs can be very helpful. For example, she pointed out that the positioning of S and S's jump in their layout made the jump automatically chancy. Someone mentioned her accent. I think a lot of Canadians have that crisp enunciation. It might depend on where in Canada she comes from. To my ear it's very pleasant, so I guess it's all a matter of taste.
    No, I've always liked Scott too. I love his enthusiasm and especially his empathy for what the skaters are going through. It's great. I liked Dick Button's more refined commentary better. He was more about the passion of what he like about skating, not just the skaters, although of course he was always gaga for Michelle and Sasha.

    Scott does make me nervous sometimes ... and he's always banging on about how good/bad the skaters were in practice, which I suppose is legit and helpful but I'm always all "arrrghhhhhh, shush! don't jinx them!" And he's always talking about how "the next jumping pass is crucial" which makes my heart stop. And there's "tripple luuuuuuuuuuuuuutz......OH!" Ack!

    But then again I'm nervous anyway and Scott at least make me feel like I'm in good company. And he always seems to want it so bad for the skaters...
    Last edited by Layfan; 02-18-2010 at 02:10 AM.

  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by rain View Post
    I loathe Rod Black as a commentator. When I heard the CTV had gotten the Olympic coverage over CBC (boo) the very first thing that came out of my mouth was "Crap! Now I have to listen to Rod Black blather on about figure skating again — a sport he knows nothing about!" I've repeatedly been heard to say "shut up" to my television screen during the broadcasts because I just can't stand him and his instigating any more.

    I agree with many here that Jamie and David have been solid commentators, with David being particularly good. I really hope to hear some Tracy Wilson at some point, because she is, hands-down, the best television figure skating commentator out there right now, IMO, of course.
    I was nursing my Rod Black induced hangover--not from drinking, but from pounding my head against the wall in response to his inane comments--when I realized that he was commentating on the short track speed skating as well. At least the speed skaters don't perform to music. The mute button is an option.

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    "the next jumping pass is crucial" which makes my heart stop. And there's "tripple luuuuuuuuuuuuuutz......OH!" Ack!
    .
    LOL. Beautiful. Luuuuuuutz!
    I do enjoy Scott, also. I can see how his somewhat gravelly voice could be a turn off for some people, but it's never bothered me. Plus, he seems to be very good hearted and genuinely cares that the skaters do well.

  7. #52
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    This Olympics I'm watching from Mexico where the full live stream is great....especially when no commentary....otherwise it's some not too knowledgeable Spanish speaking person. I personally think Traci Wilson is one of the best commentators around and I hope to hear that she is being utilized this games.

    I really don't miss listening to Rod Black either. Sometimes his filler is just inane! I thought a network such as CTV would have a writer for him. I do find he has improved over the years and at least speaks at a normal pace. In the beginning I used to feel he was talking to a kindergarten class.

    I do love hearing about those comments of David Pellitier's. He's quite a wit.

  8. #53
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    Even more than the screeching voice tone, the obvious bias is what has turned me against Scott, especially as it is usually in service of promoting his own ventures like SOI. Just so, so unprofessional. It's sad because Hamilton is pretty much the skater who made me a fan of skating ... not in 1984 but in his 1980 [gasp] Olympic programs, he skated fantastically and wowed the audiences but this was during a very entrenched "pay your dues" era so he got his gold 4 years later. Oh, and David Santee was good, too, but really it was Scott Hamilton who made me a fan of the sport. And now I can just barely stand him, it's sad.
    Last edited by Mathman; 02-18-2010 at 02:33 PM.

  9. #54
    Comeback Queen! ARipp42014's Avatar
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    So far I've been listening to the BBC version (with Robin Cousins) and the Eurosport version. Heck even the replays on nbcolympics.com (minus the Scott & Sandra commentary). So far so good. Heck even S&S's lack of speaking during the programs is nice to hear.

    I was reading Fourth Place Medal (my blog bible for the entire Olympics) and found out the Aussie commentators are in trouble for poking on Johnny. Here's the excerpt from the blog:

    As the pair discussed the men's figure skating, Molloy said, "They don't leave anything in the locker room, these blokes, do they?" before a sniggering McGuire interjected, adding: "They don't leave anything in the closet, either, do they?

    Molloy was quick to jokily reprimand McGuire, warning him he could get into trouble.

    The network then cut to an image of a skater wearing a tuxedo-style costume, which Molloy described as something even singer Prince would not wear.

    The footage then showed a skater wearing a costume of overalls and a flannelette shirt with McGuire suggesting it was "a bit of 'Brokeback.'"
    Molloy agreed, saying: "A bit of 'Brokeback Mountain' exercises, you can't wear that."

    Then they went after Weir, whose pink-laced "onesie" suit has created a lot of buzz.

    Later in the segment, Molloy apologised for that comment he had made on Tuesday night.

    "I made a joke that was a bit off-colour. Some of the crew here didn't like it either," he said.

    "I suggested that there was a disaster happening at the ice skating rink because organisers had found out one of the male ice dancers wasn't gay.

    "And I apologise for that really sincerely."

    But the apology was soon defunct as Molloy added "But it definitely wasn't this guy" before cutting to a shot of champion American figure skater Johnny Weir wearing a pink and black outfit and holding a heart-shaped cushion.
    And we all think Scott's jinxing was bad.

  10. #55
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    AND that heart-shaped cushion was thrown to him by a fan after his SP. I think his costume is sassy. Galina gave it her thumbs up.

  11. #56
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    Not a fan of Scotty/Sandra's commentary. I lost a lot of respect for them after the Salt Lake City Olympics. I will also never forget Tom Hammond trying to start something when he kept asking Tracy Wilson if she thought Anissina/Peizerat were judged fairly in the compulsories(?) then panned Anissina/Peizerat for their use of MLK excerpts in their free dance. Tom Hammond wasn't objective in that competition at all and quite frankly Hammond's comments in particular spoiled my enjoyment of those Games and especially Anissina/Peizerat's win. It was a nightmare.

    I wish that Terry Gannon, Paul Wylie and maybe Jenny Kirk were doing the commentary for NBC. They are much more informative about the COP system, while I don't think Scotty/Sandra understand it. I'm actually relieved that Scotty/Sandra have mostly stayed silent throughout this competition. At this point, I don't want to hear their biases toward certain skaters and their sarcastic, acerbic remarks about the skaters they don't like. Sometimes their comments are really subtle but you can still tell who they like and don't like. Very unprofessional IMO.

    With that said, if someone from NBC is reading this board for feedback, I would suggest that one of the commentators tell us when the halfway mark for the free skates is so that I know when the skater starts earning the bonus points. I know when ABC broadcast programs, the commentators would tell us that information and I found it particularly helpful. I would also like to know how the skaters performed during the day's practice session as well as the warmup before the skater takes the ice prior to the performance. Also, it would be helpful if Sandra could explain the choreographic intent for each program. She does it sometimes, but I would prefer if it was standard practice. Finally, it would be nice if NBC had more stats for skaters like the NFL before the program started. You know, what's the percentage for each skater to perform a certain element and get the highest level of points; what's the skater's greatess weakness in the program, etc....

    With that said, I do have to commend NBC for the addition of Tracy Wilson on the commentating team. I appreciate the fact that she tries to educate the public about the different elements in ice dancing. I learn so much from her and I also think she's very fair to all the skaters when evaluating the programs. She tells the audience both the positives and negatives about the dancer's programs. I really appreciate her commentary and just wish that we had commentators like her for the mens', ladies' and pairs' events...
    Last edited by ademption; 02-18-2010 at 01:42 PM.

  12. #57
    Rooting for the divas with Kwanford Spun Silver's Avatar
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    We need more facts and less emotion/repetitive anecdotes from announcers, but there's a limit or we'll be back to nonstop chatter.

    A statbox would meet much of the need (it should include personal best and season's best).

    Also, for heaven's sake announce the music for each program! They haven't even been showing it on the screen!

  13. #58
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    We need more facts and less emotion/repetitive anecdotes from announcers, but there's a limit or we'll be back to nonstop chatter.

    A statbox would meet much of the need (it should include personal best and season's best).

    Also, for heaven's sake announce the music for each program! They haven't even been showing it on the screen!
    mmm. The anecdotes won't be repetitive to casual viewers, and that's who the commentators are aiming for. Emotion is good for casual fans, too, i think. But the great commentators are those who can balance detailed insight with anecdotes and emotion - that gets the casual viewers excited AND teaches them a lot. I know others will disagree but I thought Dick and Peggy were usually very good at that.

    Tara Lipinski's steady commentating on Icenetwork was fine for fans who already know a lot but ... zzzzzzzzzzzzz.

    ITA about the music.

  14. #59
    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ademption View Post
    I would suggest that one of the commentators tell us when the halfway mark for the free skates is so that I know when the skater starts earning the bonus points.
    Oh please god no. Scott already loves to do it, and every time he does he recites the entire spiel about bonus points and legs being tired and blah blah shut up Scott just shut up. The bonus points aren't actually that substantial. And for fans who are vested enough to want to know such minutiae, you can study the protocols from previous competitions to know which move starts getting the bonus.

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesertRoad View Post
    And for fans who are vested enough to want to know such minutiae, you can study the protocols from previous competitions to know which move starts getting the bonus.
    Where can I find the protocols from previous competitions? Do you have any links? I've been using the Vancouver website for the elements and music choice, but didn't know where to find the protocols for other info....

    Thanks.

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