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August 17, 2016

You Won't Believe How Ryan Lochte Is Evading The Police!

Because he isn't. They're just not competent enough interrogate him correctly the first time.

  • Bob tells us what's coming up tonight, which includes the bizarre story of Ryan Lochte. If that's not a tease, I don't know what is.
  • To the track for the women's 100m hurdle semifinals. And there still aren't any people in the stands. At least not in the upper deck. Maybe everything really is backwards in the southern hemisphere, and lower deck seats are cheaper than upper deck seats. Yeah. I'm sure that's what it is.
  • To the plausibly live women's long jump. Well, not really. Actually what it is is a preview of the women's long jump. Is it already going on and NBC is just planning to show us the good parts, or is it already over and NBC is only going to show us the medalists? You'll never know! Unless you look at any other web page that covers the Olympics, and read who the winners are.
  • Steeplechase coverage! What? NBC never covers the steeplechase. Some American must have won something. Sure enough, American Evan Jager won the silver.

    These aren't normal highlights, they've been stylized with overexposed long shots and lots of slow motion. This is a 3,000 meter race, which in real time would take about eight minutes of race time. This coverage/fluff piece took about four minutes. Let's assume you'd need two minutes at the beginning and end of the actual race for NBC to cover it properly. That means they could have covered the event fully in 12 minutes. Don't you think NBC could have found eight minutes of dead air tonight so they could have shown the whole race?
  • Ashton Eaton fluff! He's the American decathlete and he gets a minute of promotion. But at least NBC is now showing us the first decathlon event, the 100-meter dash. They skip the long jump, because who wants to see that? We see one competitor in the shot put, and three people on the high jump. I think NBC is confused about the decathlon. The "deca-" part doesn't mean we get to see only one person compete in each of ten different events. NBC is doing a disservice to the competition that's supposed to reveal "the greatest athlete on Earth."

    But now, LIVE at Olympic Stadium, we get to see the 400-meters, the final decathlon event of day one. In a post-race interview, Ashton Eaton says the decathletes have been competing since 10 a.m. this morning. I guess I might have been a little hard on NBC. It would be hard to show nine hours of decathlon on prime time TV. They still could have shown more than they did though.
  • Usain Bolt fluff! Let's show him running. Let's show him in press conferences. Let's show him entering stadiums. And now let's talk about how fast he is. That was three minutes of the eight we'd need to see the whole steeplechase.
  • LIVE for the men's 200m semifinals. Ato Boldon is using a metaphor to tell Tom Hammond about how Usain Bolt maintains his speed during races. "Imagine you and I are racing," says Ato. He went on to add "in cars" and something about braking, but as soon as Ato planted the image in my head of him racing Tom, I could only imagine a relaxed Ato cruising over the finish line while Tom laid prone on the track, being attended to by paramedics.

    Semifinal one was won by LaShawn Merritt of the United States. The second semifinal was won by Usain Bolt. Neither was trying that hard at the end.
  • Let's watch one person jump in the women's long jump just so we can say we're paying attention. Good for you, long-jumping woman! Your story is inspiring.

    Wait! We get to see another jump because the men's 200m semifinals are taking so long between races. Tiana Bartoletta of the United States jumps to take the lead. So it IS going on live in the background.
  • It's time for a LIVE medal race, the women's 200-meters. Tori Bowie got some micro fluff leading into this, so she'd better win now, or else it was all in vain. Also in this race, Tom Hammond's favorite, Dafne "Shkippersh" of the Netherlands. Both of them end up losing to Jamaica's Elaine Thompson, who got neither a mispronunciation of her name or fluff, despite the fact she's now won the 100-meter and 200-meter race this Olympics.
  • Ryan Lochte, criminal mastermind! What? Brazilian officials are casting doubts on Lochte's robbery story, so they tried to take his passport and keep him in the country. Too late! He was already gone. But Lochte's teammates and fellow gun robbery victims Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger were pulled off their flight, and Jimmy Feigen didn't even show up at the airport. What's going on? Bob tells us we'll find out more at the top of the hour. Tease!
  • Gail Devers and Lolo Jones messed up on their 100m hurdle races in previous Olympics. Now they're cursed forever as fluff. Heaven help any American who misses a hurdle tonight, lest they be doomed to infamy forever.

    Fun fact, of the eight women in the 100m hurdle finals, three are Americans and at least two others train in the United States. Here comes the race.

    A US sweep! Brianna Rollins first, Nia Ali second, Kristi Castlin third. And the other two who trained in the US? Fourth and seventh. So the four fastest women in the world in the 100m hurdles all train in America. I guess we must be doing something right.
  • Brazilian authorities are officially doubting Ryan Lochte's story that he and his teammates were held up at gunpoint by fake police officers who stopped their taxi. They say there are lots of inconsistencies in their stories. They tried to stop Lochte from leaving Brazil but they were too late. However, they have managed to keep the other three in the country. By the way, like the track events, NBC has a reporter at the airport LIVE. This is fantastic.

    Clearly, this is a PR disaster for Rio, and they're trying to find out the details. Or, it's a PR disaster and they're trying to blame the victims. Seriously, what is more likely? That Lochte faked a story like this for publicity or that Brazil, who can't build a working sewer system, is also unable to successfully police their streets? Before you answer, check out these pictures of Ryan Lochte, criminal mastermind. Clearly he's unhinged.
  • Let's see two more long jumps, one from a loser and one from gold medal winner Tiana Bartoletta. Did you know each athlete in the long jump gets to make six attempts? That's 18 total jumps just for the medal winners. How many did we see tonight from the entire field? Ten? Twelve? But hey! We got to see 10 minutes about Ryan Lochte's robbery-not-robbery!
  • To women's platform diving, where the Rio authorities took some time off from hassling Ryan Lochte to clean up their green pool. Now we're doing fluff for the platform itself. It's 10 meters high and everyone has a story about how they first jumped off of it. We love you platform! I'm surprised that platform hasn't had any difficulties it had to overcome to reach it's dream of being in the Olympics. "When I started in life I was just a sidewalk, but I had big dreams..."
  • The diving coverage is actually really solid. All the commentators are good and the camera angles are impressive. It seems like there's a lot more of it than of any other event like, say, the women's long jump, but I can't complain about the execution.
  • To Cobacabana Beach we go for the beach volleyball bronze medal match, but it's NOT live. I wonder if we're behind now and NBC will catch us up for set three. Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross lost set one to the Brazil #1 team and we joined the action in set two. Note that I'm assuming there will be a third set. Surely they can't lose two nights in a row in two straight sets. And what is it about the Brazilian teams this year? Well, they are the 1- and 2-seeds. They're pretty good.

    After trailing most of match two, Kerri and April tie it up at 13, then go on a run to get ahead 19-16. They end up winning that one 21-17. We're still not live, so I'll have to avoid looking at the internet until this is over in case someone on Facebook likes being a spoiler.

    I don't know who you are, dancing US fan wearing a flag as a cape and sporting a red-white-and-blue afro wig, but I salute you.

    Yesterday, Kerri and April had a long rally that went against them and it swung the momentum that cost them the game. Now in set three, tied 6-6, they had a similar volley that they won. Ahead 7-6, will that be the spark that gets them the bronze? From that point on, the US outscores Brazil 8 to 3. Oh, if only they could have had that run yesterday. Oh well, they went out with a win. That's better than the silver medal team will do.
  • Let's close the night with not just fluff, but Mary Carillo fluff! "The Girl from Ipanema" is not just a song about a random girl. It's about a specific girl, and Mary found her. Song inspiration Heloisa Pinheiro and Mary stroll down Copacabana Beach checking out girls in bikinis and really, what more do you need than that? The song was the one of the first big bossa nova songs and is one of the most recorded songs ever. But let's forget about that and show some more women walking down Copacabana Beach in bikinis. Bob is unusually excited about this piece. It was cute, but I don't know if I would have tagged it, as Bob did, as her greatest fluff story ever. I will say, however, that when they rolled out to commercial with "The Girl From Ipanema" playing gently in the background, I found myself wishing they'd use that song more often.

I'm thinking that Ryan Lochte needs to play this criminal thing up. "Phelps and Lochte" kind of has a "Thelma and Louise" sound to it, don't you think? Movie deals, lunch boxes, action figures... this could be huge!