The 2014 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony: Mail Order Pride! (PHOTO RECAP)

The 2014 Olympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony

For many people Russia is the answer to the question "Can a nightmare be depressing?" But these days it's much more than that, because it's also the host nation of the 2014 Winter Olympics! Now, obviously, everybody is aware of certain terrible things going on in Russia with regard to its various militant insurgencies, myriad human rights violations, threats of terrorism, roving mobs of gay-bashers, a history more troubling than even our own, and of course the country's brewing president-for-life leadership situation. But here's the thing: Russia IS a beautiful place full of wonderful people, and that definitely seems to apply to Sochi, the southwestern resort town recently converted into a world's stage. Ignoring the headlines of basically every newspaper or website in recent weeks, Sochi seems like an okay place! And it just staged an Olympics Opening Ceremony to match! 

As a fan of both high and low culture I've always been pretty fond of Russia. It's the kind of place that will take a truly stunning, naturally gorgeous woman and douse her in glitter eye shadow and cram her into a quinceañera dress. That aesthetic more or less describes THIS Opening Ceremony also, as it combined some of Russia's most majestic and beautiful cultural history with strobe lights, fog machines, and LED-lit rollerbladers. But the most shocking element of all? I LOVED basically all of it. I am just as surprised as you are. I was truly bracing for a four-hour onslaught of atonal melancholy and choreography involving masses of people just lying prone in snow drifts. Call it a benefit of low expectations, but I really enjoyed a lot of this Opening Ceremony, particularly compared to the frequently headache-inducing London Olympics one. Sure, Sochi definitely brought us some truly baffling and nightmarish imagery, but despite looking insanely expensive it all had a ramshackle charm, like it was devised and performed by a billion eighth-graders. I was very into it, sorry.

Let's talk about it? Question is rhetorical!

NBC's presentation package began with a truly ominous montage of Russia's wilderness looking not unlike the Lands North of the Wall. But I guess that was the point, because guess who was narrating? Peter Dinklage! 

It was a lot of very typical Russian stuff. Like, here was some kind of guy being dragged around the tundra by reindeer.

And here was a perfect statue that every town should have. But don't worry, NBC definitely got in as many of the stereotypes as they could:

Matryoshka dolls!

The beverage that always ruins my Sundays!

NOPE, NO GAY STUFF. NEVER GAY STUFF. This was obviously an editing mistake. Let's hope it was because NBC might be going to JAIL, you guys.

Bob Costas's studio was looking VERY tight and alright. Poor Bob Costas had some kind of pink-eye situation going on. I'd give you a close-up image but nobody really needs one, to be honest. Meanwhile these two jokers were back:

I bring this up every time I see these people, but during the Athens Olympics the NBC commentators talked through Bjork's performance and I will never, ever forgive them for that. Still though, they did an okay job tonight? Yes, they yammered constantly throughout everything, but they at least kept their fun facts fun and factual. I'm not sure why Meredith Vieira needed to hug herself and remind everyone that it was a freezing "high-40s" out there. That seemed unprofessional to me. Also does Matt Lauer look like a racquetball-playing cab driver now? 

Bob Costas had a long via-satellite interview with President Obama who said nice things to the athletes and also DEFINITELY owned up to sending a very gay U.S. delegation in lieu of any high-ranking leaders so that Russia would know we think their anti-gay laws suck super hard. President Obama seemed slightly tired/stoned here but I was very proud to be American in this moment. 

Then Bob Costas brought out Tilda Swinton to talk about whatever. Just kidding it was Maria Sharapova and she's from Sochi, so she talked VERY ENTHUSIASTICALLY J/K about being from Sochi. She then took one of TV's handsomest young hunks Mary Carillo on a walking tour of her hometown, during which Sharapova claimed her favorite activity is going to the Russian circus and her favorite part of the Russian circus is Russian circus clowns.

There is a chance that Maria Sharapova is not doing so great mentally these days.

Here's U.S. Snowboarder Shaun White high-fiving a man in a bear suit:

Oh, okay, so here's what the inside of the Opening Ceremony stadium looked like raw:

See that big open space in the ceiling? That's not an open space at all! It's just a very heavy duty conveyor belt that can drag enormous set pieces into and out of the building. When Matt Lauer first described it I was like "LOL okay Russia" but it ended up being so amazing. Anyway, this whole building was only built to house the Opening Ceremony and the Closing Cermony and nothing else, so that's just Russian efficiency right there. 

One of NBC's guest correspondents was Apolo Ohno, a gold medalist in the sport of Terrible Soul Patches. I honestly cannot believe NBC allowed this. Television is a VISUAL MEDIUM. Many people have HIGH-DEF TVs. That soul patch was truly disgusting. All soul patches are, but especially this one. If Putin decided to throw Apolo Ohno in a gulag for disrespecting his country I would not sign any e-petitions about it, sorry.

Speaking of Putin, do you enjoy tons of cutaways to an unamused-looking world leader staring straight ahead? Then this was your night!

Okay, so then the show began. The motif was a little girl named "Love" experiencing the Russian alphabet and learning about all the great people/concepts/inventions that came from Russia. 

The crazy thing was, this was obviously the fever dream of somebody with terrible mental health issues. Like, this girl should probably be in a facility based on what we saw here. But also I was NOT mad because a lot of the imagery was really beautiful? (You know, when it wasn't super ugly.) Like, I LOVED this guy:

But this was probably my favorite:

And did you know there's a letter in the Cyrillic alphabet that looks like "ho"?

That is rude!

Anyway, back in the stadium, a bunch of islands came out suspended on wires and containing animatronic animals and there was even a VOLCANO one! I just really and truly loved it. It was so dorky and fun.

Also the little girl was suspended very, very high in mid-air and she did not look terrified at all.


Matt Lauer casually mentioned that a few months earlier in rehearsal she had BROKEN HER ARM. Haha oh man.

That is an optical illusion, the islands are actually floating and the "reflections" are just hanging fabric. Guys I just really liked this, okay? It reminded me of the Peter Pan ride at Disneyland, which everybody knows is secretly the best one. Sorry, Space Mountain hurts my neck and skull. But Peter Pan is THE ONE.

Then the fog demons came out and shouted at everybody.

This part was instantly famous: Five beautiful snowflakes came down and attempted to transform into the the Olympic Rings!

Haha awww. I really related to that failed snowflake, though. It reminded me of the stillborn baby robot in Batteries Not Included. Maybe all it needs is the kind-hearted ingenuity of a mute janitor to bring it back to life?

Then some men in suits came out and screamed the Russian national anthem. Sorry if this is racist but is it like ALL Russian choruses are just so angry? So much low male shouting. We get it, you are a nation of Zangiefs, please relax.

I liked when all the people in LED light-up suits came out and pretended to be the Russian flag while the real Russian flag was being raised. And then they even ran around to simulate the flag waving. Honestly I am easy to please when it comes to a mass of people moving in unison, so I was very pleased by this and easily!

Then the stage opened up and the Parade of Nations began! The cool thing was the video projection onto the surface of the floor that made it look like the athletes were emerging from the depths of hell beneath their respective nations. So, like, in the photo above, the Greek athletes are emerging from Greek Hell. I just felt like that was very thoughtful. Also, the music the whole time was a truly embarrassing '90s-style euro techno that suddenly became that one t.AT.u song when the Russian athletes walked out. If you ask me, THAT should be their national anthem, it's much friendlier. (Quick question, is that song really the ONLY international hit Russia has had since 2002? Jeez, guys.)

But if we're being real, the Parade of Nations was nowhere near as good as London's. Yes, Winter Olympics teams are smaller than Summer Olympics teams, but in my opinion that's probably for the best because having crushes on 2,800 people is much more manageable than having crushes on 10,500 people. But the downside is that winter wear is just not as fun to look at as the regular suits and, like, grass skirts that they wore at the Summer Games. Still though, what else was there to do during this hour-plus parade than rate everybody's jackets?

I loved Great Britain's jackets. Puffy coats with burgundy lining! Very posh.

Yes, Germany's had a rainbow feel, but Matt Lauer was very clear on the fact that absolutely NO gay pride was intended. NONE. Deal w/it.

I'd wear Mexico's jacket for sure.

I would not wear this, but points for tropical sassiness.

I think France won, though. Both the male and female jackets looked warm AND smart. Good job, Lacoste! 

Haha oh man, the USA sweaters. Now, obviously they are tremendously terrible. But I will say this in their defense: They look cozy! If I received one of those as a gift from, say, my grandma, I'd totally wear it around the house for the entire Christmas break. Plus there's a definite "don't give a F" quality about them that delights me. America! Why not.

But I am not kidding when I say how much I love, love, love our athletes so much. NBC showed us so much footage of them goofing around (NBC even embedded a camera within the team as they emerged into the stadium) and every moment with them made me so happy and proud.

This is what youth and joy look like. Marry me, all of the athletes? 

But if we're being honest, the REAL stars of the Parade of Nations were the ushers who had to arm dance for the entirety of the procession:

That guy was DEFINITELY feeling it. And you know what? So was I.

Then there was another video presentation showing how the original Greeks left the Mediterranean so they could populate Russia (uh, great call, guys).

And then, like, all the different engineers of every era somehow combined forces to create this:

That's what the stadium looked like from the outside. A crushed potato bug. Oh well, at least it had ENORMOUS conveyor belts on the ceiling!

Then three glowing horses came out being chased by an inflamed b-hole. Sorry if that sounds graphic but I did NOT design the opening ceremony, Russia did.

Then all this happened and it was straight-up annoying. I really hate this kind of stuff. This is NOT fun for anybody, not even children. I don't even wanna look at any of this junk.

The little girl was still floating around and walking on peoples' heads (because she's Russian?) and I guess that's when I realized this was all her nightmare? The whole night? I respect her imagination, but somebody should put her under anesthesia and gift this girl a dreamless sleep because I am exhausted.

Then all the buildings lifted up and they looked like novelty condoms.

Right?

The floor projections were always awesome, though. In this case, a fake-3D-looking ship was projected across the floor and actors in powdered wigs jumped up through trap doors and walked along like they were on the ship's deck. I liked that part. Also some of the men in powdered wigs did some hot dance moves and I am ALLLL about that sort of thing.

More dancers came out and busted out some hot moves. I will always love en masse dancing like this. Do it Russia, get it.

Then ladies came out and the whole thing turned into a Russian cotillion.

There was definitely fake snow and arm dancing, those things definitely happened. But again with the fine art mixed with strobe lights. So lovely/tacky!

Then the TERROR TRAIN came out and, I guess, brought with it an avant-garde representation of the Industrial Revolution and the endless horrors of human existence during that time?


What is it with countries always wanting to represent their industrial revolutions during opening ceremonies? That's what London's was basically ALL about. We get it, first-world countries, you turned yourselves from farmers into factory workers at some point. Let's just take that as a given next time? We don't need you to spend eight figures reminding us of this fact. It's not fun to watch and I can't imagine anybody is particularly proud of it really. It happened. It was necessary. But it's not so important that it bears talking about during a party. Although, that being said, this whole RED-ON-RED terror train motif was very strikingly nightmarish in a good way. It was supposed to be a riff on Soviet propaganda and it was very memorable in general. Points for execution.


Then after the Industrial Revolution happened, I guess all the Russian citizens banged on steel girders from Donkey Kong.

I legit loved the floating hammer-and-sickle statues. It was a truly powerful and terrifying representation of communism lording over the people. That's some credit that I need to pay Sochi: Its portrayal of the Soviet empire seemed both self-deprecating and proud in a sort of resigned way. It's like if America said, "Yeah Manifest Destiny led to some bad times, but just look at how awesome California is now!" So I do really think Russia handled itself pretty well when it came to not glossing over how horrible much of the Soviet empire was. In my opinion it was fine that they focused on some of the cooler, kitschier aspects of that era, particularly since Soviet pop culture of the '50s and '60s  was not something we were exposed to very much. I don't know. I just liked this part, what are you expecting, a professorial discourse about it?  

Then the little girl floated up and her balloon floated away. Matt Lauer said something about the balloon representing the Russian dream or something else super sad like that. Who knows. Metaphor stuff.

Then the Olympics dude came out and made a speech about whatever.

Then Putin stood up and said that everyone may now proceed with the Olympics.

And then fireworks! I love those. 

The traditional white-dove-inspired dance was set to "Swan Lake" finally and it was absolutely gorgeous no diggity. These ladies had LED light ropes and swirled them around so that they sometimes looked like jellyfish, or sometimes like those bugs from Avatar, or, from certain angles, sometimes like white doves. That's how the white doves factored in. Anyway, it was lovely.

Then some old cosmonauts and probably some random townsfolk who happened to own white trench coats walked the Olympic flag up onto the ice podium.

This lady came out and screamed the Olympic anthem. I'm no Kurt Loder but I don't think the Olympic anthem is very good from a musical standpoint. Not enough hooks and the bridge left something to be desired. I would not download this .mp3.

Oh and THEN the glowing rollerbladers came out and I am telling you this was my number-one favorite part of the whole night. Not so much the rollerbladers, they reminded me of Wheelers from Return to Oz. No, I am talking about the floating constellation wireform athletes that began lighting up in darkness while the Daft Punk score from Tron: Legacy played.


Guys I don't know if I'm losing my mind or not, but this part made me cry. I thought it was so gorgeous and meaningful and it made my brain tingle. Just giant, floating people lighting up in complicated patterns. There is always talk of how athletic competition elevates humanity or whatever, but it's always struck me as a stretch. And yet this imagery made me really reconsider. The human body is really fantastic! We do such great things with it. Man, I love the Olympics.

So then Maria Sharapova ran out with some stick that was on fire. I'm not sure if anybody told her it was on fire, so that made me nervous. But then I think she finally noticed, so she ran across the stadium and gave it to some other people, "You deal with it."

Again, I must have been feeling very mentally weak at this point because THIS also made me tear up: The final athletes running out of the stadium while ALL of the Russian dancers and performers, still in costume, waved them goodbye. It was like an All That Jazz ending where everyone we'd seen earlier in the night returned for one final salute. I just felt so happy!

Then the Giant Man and Tiny Lady lit a fuse and it traveled up a tower:

And then the big torch lit!

I always love that. I am a sucker for a torch-lighting. My heart was so warmed by these last parts. It was almost enough to forget that the whole thing was a FOUR-HOUR ORDEAL.

This lady knows what I'm talking about:

So there you have it! The Sochi Opening Ceremony. Part elegant, part tacky, part immaculate, part trainwreck. I am frankly glad it was ALL of those things. Most of my favorite things are! As much as I wanted to just sit back and "bust caps" or throw down "mad snaps" on this ceremony, I was surprised by how into it I was. Sorry for not being more of a hater (I'm not sorry, haters), but that's just how life goes sometimes. 

OK BYE


QUESTIONS

... What did you think of this Opening Ceremony compared to ceremonies past?

... What was your favorite sequence of the night?

... Does Russia seem very intense?

... What is your favorite Russian pop song not sung by t.A.T.u.?


Comments (115)
Submit
Sort: Latest | Popular
Rich kids, social experiments, who cares.

No black ghetto kids allowed, just rich spoiled little girls and boys who are not athletes, ...curling?

One big social experiment.....
Reply
Flag
Say what you will about Russia, hate them, love them or be mad when they win the gold medals, but I absolutly love thier national anthem. It is so majestic, pompus and strong, and
it is really best when it's sung by a male chorus. I am from sweden and I really wish that our national anthem was better so that we have something more to look forward to when, on the few occasions it actually happens, a Swedish athlete wins the gold.

Great review. Although I did not agree with you on many things I could still enjoy it.
Ps. t.A.T.u's song might be a few years old, but my guess is that they tried to flirt with the world because of the critism with Russias gay laws, this because t.A.T.u themselves are gay. They even let them preform before the opening ceremony started just to get some good will. I didn't think it worked because I still don't agree or like the view of human rights in Russia very much.
.
2
Reply
Flag
Yeah that was awkward. I mean ceremony. Im russian I know thing or two about Russia) Actually all olympics openings are annoying as hell and have this jingoistic vibe. I hate most of all that in history part of ceremony (when Peter the Great and Communism and so on) there were no visible women except women in red with baby carriages that symbolizes I guess baby boom in Russia's 50s and 60's and modern Russia's propaganda of traditional values and obsession with demographics. According to this history part russian women's only achievement is fertility. That is very sad especially when real gender equality is far away dream for russian women. And Putin is so ugly. Sorry world.
Reply
Flag
the boat thing was sweet, but i kept thinking...it probably looks weird for people on the other 3 sides of the stadium...right?

i think it only would look right from one side.

i also liked the human flag wave, but started falling asleep during the ballet part.

cant believe NBC didnt air T.a.t.u's song. weak.
Reply
Flag
i also thought it was funny that they made the two old people run the longest distance out of the stadium to light the torch. ha
1
Reply
Flag
Loved the recap. I missed the ceremony but after reading this, i really do want to it expereince it for myself.
Reply
Flag
Thank you for this recap , it was very funny ...
Reply
Flag
I liked the review a bit. The Tilda Swinton joke was hilarious, and the best part. Blaming the Russians for not mentioning a dark part of their history in the opening ceremonies would be like blaming the LA or Atlanta Olympics for not highlighting Americas history of slavery in their opening ceremonies. Yes, other countries had slavery, but the host country doesn't have to own up to it in primetime. So Russian has a lot of bad things going. So do we. So does the middle East. The games aren't about bringing a microscope to those things, No one looks good under a microscope.
So back to the review and the opening. It was all right. (the opening). the review was just snarky.
They weren't as elaborate as London, or refined. NBC mentioning the cold when every twitter pic and Instagram showed clear and comfortable skies was ludicrous. They shipped in snow because it isn't that cold there!!!!
I know they are airing their shows on a serious time delay, so I get that they have time to polish everything.... but they don't have to drag it out. Wasn't that a complaint from the Australlian games they said they were going to address??? if the results were in 10 hours before, they could use a lot of the time they spend on back stories and biographies that seem like unnecessary filler on sports that don't make the prime time show.
NBC isn't disrupting its morning shows for live broadcasts, at least make the primetime show go faster.
And the gantry system was impressive. The NBC airing had 12 hours to edit and react to what they saw, but they could have edited it quicker so as not to have to edit the speeches for "time issues". % minutes to explain the gantry system, or the 10 minute Sochi walkthrough with Sharapova could have been shown later. They made the wrong choice to edit a speech meant to be heard live just because they weren't sure how their audience might react to the speech. Sharapova is going to be there all week, it could have waited.
More+
6
Reply
Flag
I did not watch it but now I want to!
You are ever so funny mate! Thanks!
3
Reply
Flag
Oh my goodness. I didn't watch the opening ceremonies, but I loved this review. Not so much because of the review itself (though that WAS awesome), but because of all the hate comments. Idk how much Price cares, but I LOVE reading them. Because getting pissed off about a review like this solely because you're taking satire too seriously is the most hilarious thing to read. It might be my favorite part of the Olympic Games every two years. Rock on, haters/trolls.
6
Reply
Flag
I liked a lot about this review. I liked its general humorous tone without it seeming like some sort of malicious agenda to just make fun of everything. I liked that it was kept at a neutral manner towards Russia itself, I even appreciated the jokes poked at choir/opera singing (because it's a cultural thing and people not used to it just won't get it and that's fine).

What I disliked, A LOT, is offhanded dismissal of some very notable names that aren't just relevant to people with Russian roots, but are the people who left a mark on world's history at large.

These were NOT "just some old cosmonauts and passers by with white coats". Valentina Tereshkova was not only the first woman in human history to go to space, but she did it SOLO, in the sixties. I'd love to see someone depicting Neil Armstrong as "just some old dude that supposedly walked the moon" and THAT being "okay". There was also an Oscar winner in that group and a thrice gold medallist. These are the people that left historical, cultural and athletic mark on the whole world.

Also, these were not just some old wheezing "tiny lady and giant man". Irina Rodnina is the only pair skater to win 10 successive World Championships (1969–78) and three successive Olympic gold medals (1972, 1976, 1980). Respectively, Vladislav Tretiak is a former goaltender for the USSR's national ice hockey team. Considered to be one of the greatest goaltenders in the history of the sport, he was voted one of six players to the International Ice Hockey Federation's (IIHF) Centennial All-Star Team in a poll conducted by a group of 56 experts from 16 countries.

I would hope that it won't matter that these achievements are made by "Russians" and so they are somehow "less worthy of note" because of it.
More+
26
Reply
Flag
*blink blink* I'm sorry, did you come here looking for a serious, reverent review? Because if so, the first sentence should have clued you into the fact that you were in the wrong place.
11
Reply
Flag
When a satirical review with tons of cynicism and irony goes too far.. it feels almost.. almost.. like ignorance.
10
Reply
Flag
Yes.
3
Reply
Flag
Based on my extensive experience of enjoying Price Peterson's Teen Wolf and Vampire Diaries recaps, I'm 99.9% certain he would refer to Neil Armstrong as "just some old dude that supposedly walked the moon". It's just his writing style and sense of humour. Think of it as equal opportunity LOLz.
17
Reply
Flag
Lol, I was gonna say exactly the same thing ... that would be a very typical Price thing to say :) No reason to get upset about it.
3
Reply
Flag
lol @ the Zangief comment.
3
Reply
Flag
Haaaa, poor Bob Costa's eye, very first thing I noticed.

No comment about how Shaun White cutting off that ridiculous hair made him go from dorkus to attractive? It's hard out there for a ginger, I guess.

Peter Pan is overrated, they sped it up too much and you can't make out all the nifty stuff, and even still the line is like 45 minutes. Next door you can go to hell with Mr Toad, across the way you can touch an apple and make a witch cackle just before heading in to the most nonsensical narrative of all time (seriously, riding the Snow White ride is utter nonsense, the Little Mermaid one too), you can hang out on pleasure island next to that, you can have a tea party with the Mad Hatter, you can fly down an icy mountain in a bobsled behind that, you can go insane listening to the same song for 15 minutes solid in a boat down the road. The hanging islands in the opening ceremonies do look kinda cool though.

"Haha awww" is exactly what I said when I saw that snowflake refuse to open. Refusing your simile to Batteries Not Included, nope nope nope.

Yeah, what was with the music during the parade of nations? That was really bizarre, even for this mess.

You are crazy for giving white piping a 9.6. Yes the singular athlete OUT OF 119 million has a rather nice jacket cut, but that white is too thick and the pockets are unacceptable. Judge's deduction: 2 points.

You gave France a perfect score for gray? Come on! What is with these judges?

Thank you for calling out the USA's awful knitwear. Ralph Lauren can go to hell for foisting that mess, it looks like someone's grandma knitted an Indycar.

You're going to gif the arm dancing ushers, but not the bizarre encircled walking sign women preceding every country? WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?!? It's like someone watched too many bad futuristic movies and took them seriously, but this is not Blade Runner yet.

Oh dog, you are exactly right on what the horses were being chased by, that's precisely what I said when it came onscreen. Flaming butthole attack!

Be fair, the whimsical lady-giant's dildo parade was clearly just a Russian Smurf village (my sister said when they floated away that it was a Russian Snork village now, I just lamented the poor lady-giants who would no longer be able to be sexually satisfied).

"Novelty Condoms", if you put something that looks like that on your johnson, you will have a bad time and not go to space today.

No, wrong, bad. The floor projections are cure and clever FROM ONE ANGLE and then suck hard from every other. You know how we know this? CANADA ALREADY DID IT WITH THEIR OLYMPIC CEREMONY!

Ugh, the so much dancing part. You can't build walls in all your hotels, but at least you completed the telescoping, 200-foot-tall columns that you'll DEFINITELY be able to use again - great priorities.

Price, they were clearly working hard to complete the Olympic stadium during this show, show some respect.

The creepy Soviet imagery was a truly weird thing, like when you think of snow sports now, you'll equate that with communism and sadness.

You are totally off your nut for crying at the artwork from a winter-themed Pee-Chee folder there.

Well, Sochi beat Canada for the torch part, anyway. Ha ha, Canada's torch was a cauldron of ice, and it broke, and it sucked, and it was FAKE because they had to relight a replica outdoors.

4 hours. 4 hours! You can actually see Matt Lauer notably aged by the end of the ceremonies in that last image.
More+
2
Reply
Flag
Shaun White has had that hair cut for a while. dont you watch the x-games.

i said the same thing about the floor projections...what about the 3 other sides of the stadium. probably looked horrible.
Reply
Flag
The last hair I saw on him was short, but not as short and not straight. Then again, I try my damnedest not to pay attention to Shaun White more than absolutely necessary.

I am guessing every major event from now on is going to have those dumb floor projections - it's cheap and looks good on TV, who cares what the actual people at the event see, I guess.
Reply
Flag
This comment has been removed.
Reply
Flag
Better than Canada's and miles miles better than the London one (man, that was bad). Thank you Price for providing a subjective, yet extremely entertaining, view.
2
Reply
Flag
"...for providing a subjective, yet extremely entertaining, view."

And all of a sudden all my anger about the review has vanished :) After all it is a subjective view and americans and russians will bicker at each other till the sun shines no more.
1
Reply
Flag
person who wrote this article is so stupid he doesn't even realise it, i feel sorry for him and all the people who do not get the russian point , these people listening to the wrong interpretation of views and ideas and laws made by bias journalists. the most funny thing from all of this is the gay law because all people protest it and boycott russia but does anyone know about the law....which just against propaganda to the children which is the same as in us....so what r u people talking about....many smart people from us and other countries who are not double standard get the world no in one scope as the writer of the article who like to laugh on everything because stupidity can't be turned.....
10
Reply
Flag
Mmhmm....yesssss.....the wangst is strong with this one. I don't even feel the need to refute the incorrect facts in this post (100% of the post, basically).
3
Reply
Flag
I'm confused .. I thought Price was quite unbiased in his review and was generally his normal sarcastic awesome self. He even said he loved the show. I don't know what you saw in there that upset you.
5
Reply
Flag
I'm sure it's that opening paragraph that got this person's goat, it was brutally honest.

Also, we don't have laws against "gay propaganda to the children", so it's not the same as in the US, sorry.
2
Reply
Flag
I saw it as Price making fun of the hypocrisy of the Western media. I could be wrong though ...
Also ... yeah, you guys kinda do have the same laws (in certain states): http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/us-hypocrisy-over-russias-anti-gay-laws/2014/01/31/3df0baf0-8548-11e3-9dd4-e7278db80d86_story.html
Are those laws just? That's a different question ...
2
Reply
Flag
That is an Opinion article so it's slanted. The idea that Russia's anti-gay laws are just about keeping propaganda from minors is a smokescreen, ANY homosexual action is seen as propaganda.

As for the US hypocrisy, to be fair, Utah, Arizona, Texas, and Alabama are all awful states, blights on the face of the country, havens to bigotry and religious zealotry and ignorance and hate of all kinds (full disclosure: I lived in one of the named states for a year). But the difference between US and Russia is that the majority of the US political system isn't backing those idiots' anti-gay laws the way Russian powers are backing St. Petersburg's.
Flag
Thanks for the recap. I boycotted it for ethical reasons so it was a gr8 read :)
Reply
Flag
We're definitely in two different worlds, Price. This ceremony was so mechanistic and boring to me and I loved the London one, haha. Oh well, different tastes. Really loved the ode to British invasion music and all with London and it's all over social progression. Not into all the ballet Russian, opera thing or whatever? :P
Reply
Flag
i kinda agree. i liked the london one...had WAY better music. and i hated the ballet & opera part, but the rest was pretty good. loved the floor projections..especaially the boat one, but too bad only 1/4 of the stadium had a good view of it.
Reply
Flag
wow... so much hatred, Price Peterson you are so pathetic....
4
Reply
Flag
Not any more pathetic than, say, mindlessly insulting someone behind the anonymous shield of the internet. Hey, drakko, YOU wouldn't happen to know anyone like that, would you?
2
Reply
Flag
he actually said he loved it but then in classic Price sarcasm I guess it sounded like hatred, haha.
3
Reply
Flag
That is the worst picture of Maria Sharapova ever.
Where was Pussy Riot?
The best part of the news for a while was when straight faced news readers had to say "Pussy Riot" every show. :)
Give us Pussy Riot.
5
Reply
Flag
Thank you for addressing this hypocritical, superficial and simple-minded malice the Western media is employing. I am by no means a supporter of Russian politics but this childish ridiculing is an insult to the Russian people who are by no means any more homophobic, totalitarian or unfriendly than Americans, Germans, what have you. It's shameful and neglectful of the olympic spirit, which is the same be the games here or there.

Fun fact: Austrian journalist Simon Rosner tweeted a picture of a damaged street in Vienna, hashtagged #SochiProblems, and was subsequently contacted by CNN requesting the image for a collection of Sochi's greatest embarrassments. Go figure.
16
Reply
Flag
pity for your argument that the antigay laws passed by Putin are approved by 85% of the Russians..
1
Reply
Flag
I don't mean to start a fight here, but pity for your argument that this poll was conducted by a state-owned and government-run institution, which gives it tons of credibility in this matter.
7
Reply
Flag
I flipped over to the ceremony an hour or so in and saw the little girl floating about 100 feet off the ground. I was like WTF is Russia up to now. I tweeted and turned back to hockey. Then an hour later, I flipped back to the ceremony, and saw the same little girl walking on people's heads and looking as scared as a rabbit with its foot in a trap. I just laughed my ass off.

Oh Russia, how I love thee. Let me count the ways.
2
Reply
Flag
Your reviews are always great, but this one was particularly hilarious. I don't think I stopped laughing the entire time I was reading :). Thank you!
5
Reply
Flag
Excuse me, but in what universe is "high 40s" freezing? This is the WINTER olympics. It's supposed to be below the freezing point, aka 32. The temperature in Soch right now is horrible for winter olympics. There are fucking palm trees in Sochi.
7
Reply
Flag
For opening ceremony team jackets Russia def. had the best ones, I loved their fur coats. I also liked Canada's Mountie jackets and the States Christmas sweaters.

I didn't actually catch the opening ceremony so I cant really comment on it
4
Reply
Flag
I couldn't help but love how, while they were talking about how the nation changed from uniformity to individuality, the costumes remained entirely uniform without a hint of difference. Also how NBC specifically said how that they were going to focus on the athletes and not all the social-political sh*t that happens, courtesy of Matt something...glad to know that NBC is censoring the olympics, even in America!
3
Reply
Flag
greatest music for nation's parade ever!
5
Reply
Flag
Your rampant sentimentality over the whole affair is charming, but there is NO DEFENSE for those sweaters.

NO DEFENSE.

Plus, weren't you annoyed that the relentless commentary could not provide an identity for ANY of the adorable US athletes besides Shawn White?
6
Reply
Flag
I don't remember the 2010 Canadian opening ceremonies (my brain can't remember 4 years ago) but I'm going to say those were the best cause, reasons.
6
Reply
Flag
i dont remember them either, i remember the music of london. russia has some shitty music if thats the best they could offer
Reply
Flag
I don't remember the opening, but the closing ceremonies were epic. KD Lang barefoot and Neil Young? Beat that, Russia.
5
Reply
Flag
Love it. The Dancing ushers were a hit in my house. The black and white floor projections were pretty cool. I'm still not sure I understand the connection between Russia and Albert Einstein during the alphabetic nightmare.
1
Reply
Flag
That's because it wasn't Albert Einstein. It was Sergei Eisenstein.
7
Reply
Flag
Oh. Thank you. I wasn't really paying attention and was so confused when I heard Einstein. I spent 10 minutes looking online trying to find a connection. Thought I had lost it.
1
Reply
Flag
I always enjoy the opening ceremonies. I can't compare it to past openings...mostly because I can't remember more than bits and pieces of the past ones. I really liked the ballet sequence. My favorite part was when Matt Lauer said something about cameras with flash cubes. Ha ha! I think we used those for a couple years back in the '70s.
1
Reply
Flag
ha, i remember him saying flash cubes too... i just rolled my eyes. hahah
1
Reply
Flag
I think you just can't remember anything that came before these Opening Ceremonies because who can remember back that far? THESE WERE ETERNAL.
1
Reply
Flag
Ha I love this review. I thought you were going to mention the Venezuelan athlete though in the parade of nations who was clearly having the MOST fun out of everyone. That guy made me happy :)
5
Reply
Flag
There was no way I could watch all four/4 hours of that. How long is it really supposed to be in person? I am glad to be recording to skip the boring parts like speeches, most of the flag parade, etc.
4
Reply
Flag
the wife and i watched the whole thing...well she fell aslepp near the end and i was playing on my Vita most of the time, but it was on for all 4 hrs.
1
Reply
Flag
Sheesh. Too long. :D
1
Reply
Flag
Also, it wasn't the best opening ceremony. Beijing's was the best. London was better than this one IMO.
2
Reply
Flag
Staff
Price I enjoyed putting eyes to this, A-plus job mate.
27
Reply
Flag
What Tim really means is he appreciates Price watching so the rest of us don't have to sit through it.
6
Reply
Flag
If you're going to cover the history of Russia you have to gloss over a lot. Every time we produce an Opening Ceremonies we have to pretend slavery never happened, but Russia's task was sweeping the 20 million deaths of Joseph Stalin under the rug.

Makes me wonder how Germany would handle their history if they ever nabbed an Olympics.
10
Reply
Flag
"Makes me wonder how Germany would handle their history if they ever nabbed an Olympics."


Do you mean how Germany would handle it when the Nazis were actually running things and the Olympics were in Berlin, or after the war, when the Olympics were in Munich?
1
Reply
Flag
Any country taht is large enough to host the Olympics and outside North America is likely to have been around a lot longer and therefore have some unpleasant events. No country has entirely clean hands. But the Olympics are about peace and looking forward and trying to be bring out the best in the world.
7
Reply
Flag
Australia was (and still is) I guess in a healing process with the Indigenous Australians. So when the 2000 Olympics occurred it was positive as it was used as a turning point of being accepting (and not racist) and reconciliation. Plus one of our star-athletes was Aboriginal and the country was all about getting behind her and generally trying to be a better country in general.

Olympics can work wonders for getting a country together.
1
Reply
Flag
The Chinese ignored thousand of years of ethnic cleansing with drums, it is quite easy to do.
1
Reply
Flag
How to you use drums to enact ethnic cleansing? The only methods I can imagine are far out and certainly not easy to undertake.
Reply
Flag
Yeah but you really can't win in these situations; if we in Germany showed the Nazis, there'd be outrage, if we didn't, there'd be outrage.. the Olympics are about celebrating sports & allowing the host country (no matter how terrible it may have been in the past/actually is now) to showcase its best side. If I remember correctly, the Brits didn't showcase slavery either, so you know.. cut the host countries a little bit of slack, maybe?!
9
Reply
Flag
When Germany gets another games, I'm sure they won't mention WW2 and that should be fine, it shouldn't be about the entirety of a country's history, it should be a small taste at what makes them who they are today.
3
Reply
Flag
I agree it shouldnt be all, not that it should be ignored
1
Reply
Flag
When I made a positive comment about Price's last epic photo recap I got in trouble from JT_Kirk and now I'm on a very short leash apparently. All I think I'm allowed to say is that I loved reading this a lot and it almost makes me wish I'd actually watched the ceremony.
7
Reply
Flag
Hey now, I said you were a kiss-ass but not wrong.

Trust me, you don't want to have sat through that thing, I kept going in and out with it, 4 HOURS was too much just to click over to once in a while, I dunno how anybody could have sat through that without being forced.
2
Reply
Flag
it was on for all 4 hrs in our house, the wife fell asleep near the end and i was playing on my Vita most of the time...but it was on...no one forced us. hah
Reply
Flag
Doesn't sound like you actually sat through it so much as occupied your time with more interesting things like video games and unconsciousness. ;-)
1
Reply
Flag
I think Canada deserves mention for parade of nations!!! Also as far as Opening Ceremonies goes they did a good job. Vladislav Tretiak and Irina Rodnina had a long lonely run to the torch though, I liked how in Vancouver there were spectators around the cauldren when it was lit.
13
Reply
Flag
The long lonely run annoyed me. Actually, it made me laugh, because it all seemed very Austin Powers to me - them running out, no one is there, did the miss it, etc.
1
Reply
Flag
i thought it was funny they made the oldest people run the furthest...took forever...hah
3
Reply
Flag
You wouldn't happen to be from Canada, would you?
2
Reply
Flag
That obvious lol?
2
Reply
Flag

Like TV.com on Facebook