Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Dear 2010 Trophee Eric Bompard TV Production Staff...

...I write this at the risk of sounding ungrateful—though that is hardly the case. As with every home country of a Grand Prix event, you were responsible for producing the “World Feed” that was sent out to Universal, NBC, Canadian TV, Japanese TV, etc… and it was quite apparent that you folks were determined to go above and beyond what’s been done by all the 2010 GP countries ahead of you. Nothing wrong with that; some of them seemed quite challenged to bring us even the basics (show the skater, show the skating, show the scores) and it was refreshing to know you aimed higher. To that end, I’m sending a little Do’s and Don’ts list to help you plan for next year. Consider it my bouche de Noel to you this holiday season. You’re ever so welcome.

+ DO keep the guy that does artist’s renderings of skaters on the fly. I’ve seen him several times before; it’s a very nice touch, the way you work him into the action every now and again. (And livens up an event with very few standouts—such as this year’s ice dancing!)

+ DON’T feature aerial shots so high in the rafters you cannot tell what’s being done, let alone who’s doing it. Just because some poor soul has to watch it from that high up doesn’t mean we all want to suffering nosebleeds right alongside her.

+ DO continue to stay on the skater after they’ve finished, allowing us enough time to gauge their reaction to their own skating. It was a treat to see, for instance, Takahiko Kozuka’s charming and triumphant (but still characteristically subtle) double-fist pump at the completion of his winning free skate.

+ DON’T show shots of other people while a skater’s program is in progress. Why were we looking at a two-shot in the crowd when Kevin Reynolds’ free skate was just getting underway? And why, for the love of God, were we forced to watch Nikolai Morozov boogie along vicariously from the boards for what seemed like an eternity while his student (Florent Amodio) was in the thick of his fun-loving footwork? Show that stuff after the skate, s’il vous plait!! (Big thanks to Tracy Wilson for complaining about this particular shot on-air!)

+ DO get creative with the kiss-n-cry shots. As entertaining as it is to hear Frank Carroll’s random comments to Mirai Nagasu (this time I picked up “Good job out there; you weren’t chicken at all!”), it’s nice to see a little tilt-down from the TEB sign here, a slow pan from the left there…

+But DON’T give us tight shots of a skater’s feet while spinning. When Alissa Czisny is executing the hands-down most reliable, beautiful part of her skating talent, I want to see the positions she’s hitting... the lovely lines… I already KNOW her spin is perfectly centered.

+DO get even more artsy-fartsy, and put little sweeper girls in the foreground of those K&C shots (having them move out on cue, etc.). That, plus the piled-up stuffed toys obscuring Brian Joubert’s face after his SP scores went up, made his mediocre (and as it turned out, only) 2010 TEB appearance palatable.

+And finally… DON’T show us coach/skater split screens unless it’s in the warm-up. No offense, but that sort of “experimentation” is SO 1980s.

Don’t believe me? Check out
this clip of the day from 1986 Worlds, about 1 minute in… while it’s not a split-screen, it’s a directing decision that ultimately got voted down for future use. Easy reason: it took away from the performance at hand. Attentionez, TEB producers! And never forget that sometimes the basics-- the skater, the skating, the scores-- are all you really need.

Merci beaucoup,
Kelli @ État de la raie


sk8rmom said...

Ditto to the whole post!

i hate hate hate those blade shots. Thank you for this post, wish they would actually read these suggestions! My son would look at me and laugh every time this happened as I would yell at the computer with no effect. Grrr! What a farce! He said "at least we know what type of blades everyone wears LOL (insert eye roll here)".

Almost as bad as those aerial shots of the spins during the olympics. Blech!

Loved the cute shots of the little flower sweepers parting to reveal the skaters.

Kelli Lawrence said...

Thanks sk8ermom! Yeah, I wish my "letter" would be read/heeded too... but as you can imagine I'm not holding my breath :-)

C'est la vie!

Package holidays in Roda said...

Receive As it is to hear comments about random Frank Carroll Mirai Nagasu (this time I picked up "Good job there

translation services said...

As entertaining as it is to hear Frank Carroll’s random comments to Mirai Nagasu this time I picked up