As the 2012 Summer Olympics in London or officially known as Games of the XXX Olympiad get underway on Friday, let’s look back at how the 2008 Games in Communist China were covered by the English language rightsholders in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia. I’ll provide videos of various opens, closes and how some of the events were called on NBC, CBC, BBC and 7 Network. In the cases of the CBC and 7 Network, 2008 marked the end of their Olympic roads. Unless CBC and 7 Network win the bids for the 2014/2016 Games, they’ll be shut out for another set of Olympics.
Let’s begin with NBC and its coverage of the Games of the XXVIX Olympiad in Beijing.
This is the opening to NBC’s coverage just as it was ready to show tape delayed coverage of the Opening Ceremony on August 8, 2008 (08/08/08). And we have a whole bunch of athletes which NBC showcased saying, “It’s not the triumph, it’s the struggle.” So dramatic. And you get the ending NBC’s Opening Ceremony coverage with a nice dedication to ABC’s Jim McKay who passed in 2008.
As the USA’s men’s basketball team took on Communist China, NBC surprised viewers by bringing back the “Roundball Rock” theme that had laid dormant since the network lost the rights to the NBA in 2002. It was nice to hear it again. Almost brought a tear to my eye. And note weekend host Jim Lampley who is no longer part of the Peacock’s coverage.
Here’s Tom Hammond’s call of Usain Bolt’s shattering the 100 meters World Record.
And we have NBC’s closing montage set to “Remember The Titans”.
This is CBC’s highlights of the entire 16 Days of Glory.
And to end CBC’s coverage of Beijing, it looks back at 40 years of Olympics coverage using Ali Slaight’s “Story of Your Life”.
CBC lost the contract to the 2010/2012 to the Canadian Olympic Broadcasting Consortium led by CTV. The rights to 2014/2016 are up in the air.
Here’s 7 Network in Australia and its open to its coverage of the Games in Communist China. A bit different to how it looks in the US. Matthew White is the host.
And here’s a 7 Network montage done to “Ready to Fly” by Amy Pearson. The song is about breaking up with a man, but whatever. 7 Network reworked it to fit its coverage.
This was released before the 2008 Games, the great animation used by BBC for the Olympics, based on the old Monkey TV series, this was done by Jamie Hewlett and Damon Albarn who also did work for the group Gorillaz.
Here’s a few minutes of BBC’s coverage of the Opening Ceremony. Just be patient after the weather forecast. Sue Barker hosts and throws it to Hazel Irvine, Huw Edwards and Carrie Gracie.
And this is a compilation of opens featuring Michael Johnson saying, “Previously at the Olympics”. I love these opens. The music is from “The Matrix Reloaded”.
This is a cool BBC review of Michael Phelps’ 8 gold medals in Communist China.
Finally, here’s BBC’s ending montage. I like this a lot. It’s done to Tom Baxter’s Miracle.
And that’s going to do it for the Videos of the Week. Enjoy the Olympics.