TV review: Spellbound by Olympics Super SaturdayBy Becky Barnes
August 09, 2012
London 2012 Olympic coverage
BBC One, also on BBC iplayer.
Saturday, August 4
I never thought I would choose to write about a sports programme but I thought I’d make an exception for the Olympics.
Before the games I wasn’t particularly excited, but those who are really enthusiastic (and there are A LOT of them) seem to have rubbed some of their cheer on to me.
Luckily for those of us who don’t usually watch sports, it seems you don’t have to have much sporting knowledge to enjoy the Olympics.
There are many extra features to the Games, including admiring athletic bodies, feeling patriotic and shedding a few tears when the athletes step up to the podium to receive a gold medal.
And what Olympic-phobe could fail to get a little bit excited by Saturday’s coverage?
The so-called ‘Super Saturday’ saw six gold medals drop into the GB bag.
First off the men’s Four paddled their way to victory, then the ladies’ Lightweight Double Sculls followed suit.
I have to say, one very entertaining thing about the BBC’s Olympic coverage is their ample use of slow-motion replay and Katherine Copeland’s face when she realised she had won was a picture.
Then the trio of cyclists in the velodrome brought the GB total of golds for the day to three.
It was an inspiring day as Joanna Rowsell, who has alopecia, stood proud as a golden winner on International Alopecia Day.
And then the one we had all been waiting for – the face of London 2012 Jessica Ennis stepped into the stadium leading the heptathlon by 184 points.
The humble 26-year-old stayed cool and collected as she beat personal bests to keep ahead of the competition.
The live footage caught the way the nation was filled with pride – the roar in the stadium as Ennis crossed the finish line and the way the crowd sang the National Anthem.
Quite soon after Greg Rutherford utilised his long legs and long jumped his way to another gold for GB.
It’s quite entertaining to compare how different athletes react to their victory – Rutherford was cool and confident while Ennis and Mo Farah seemed far more humbled by their successes.
And wasn’t Farah’s performance immense?
For me, that race seemed to go on and on . . . and on. But it did provide some drama as skinny men poked each other a bit and glanced sideways at one another. Someone even fell over.
It was a little bit sad when everyone lapped the other GB competitor but Farah made up for it, shooting off at the end of the 10,000m, bringing home GB’s first-ever gold for this event.
What was particularly impressive, although the BBC commentators seemingly failed to notice, was how Farah’s training partner Rupp managed to gallop past two others to storm his way to the silver.
And the fact Mo pretty much laid down in his training partner’s spit after winning the race.
Add to that shots of the crowd getting excited when they’re on camera, Usain Bolt’s ‘swagger’ and Denise Lewis crying all the time, and you’ve got the best day of the Olympics so far. I can’t wait to see what comes next.