The 2012 Olympics Medal Count + TV Highs, Lows and Disappointments

by on August 12, 2012

in Entertainment

Olympics - London 2012Over the last couple of weeks the 2012 Summer Olympics captured our hearts, imaginations, and dreams as NBC brought us the best of the best physical feats in many sports from London.

It was something to behold and every night for the last two weeks, I was losing some serious sleep as the games aired most nights until midnight.

NBC had one hell of a challenge in front of it. To air events that the world would know the outcome to, several hours before the show. As the jokes went, the Curiosity tape delay from Mars was 14 minutes. NBC’s from London, 6+ hours.

But if you wanted to, some things could have been watched live. I taped the 3am airings of both the men’s and women’s marathons and watched them as soon as I got up. They aired almost 12 hours later for those who could wait.

The final medal count had the United States eclipsing China, with 104 total medals over China’s 87. We kicked some butt over there! (The complete list is below.)

Despite the obvious challenges to NBC, specifically, airing events everyone knew the results to, they rocked the TV ratings because we wanted to see it happen. And the advertisers won the gold with this investment.

The last Olympics had the same issue and people are wondering if NBC will strive for live coverage in 2014 for the Winter Olympics or not. To be honest, since viewers made this a hit, why would NBC even worry about changing their process?

I don’t expect any changes, but who knows.

NBC averaged over 31 million viewers each night. And they did hold over 30 hours of live coverage across all their platforms, despite skipping such coverage for some of the most anticipated events where Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt participated. Just to name a few.

My issues were with some questionable reporting processes. The guys covering the marathons seemed to be folks who studied up and were thrown into the coverage. They did fine, but there were some things they said that didn’t make sense.

Aside from some of the obvious angst that folks were evidencing on Twitter, to me, it was obvious that scientific achievements like Curiosity landing on Mars ranked so low to not even warrant a mention or ticker text during the telecast but then announcements for Romney’s running mate deserved coverage interruption.

I was befuddled by that.

I hated how the much coveted, tape delayed events were held from airing until around or after 10p.m..

And some of the background bits that preceded in the first hour each night, well, I was pretty anxious to see the sporting events, so I was chomping at the bit. Those could have been put on at 7, not 8 pm and they could have run until 11 not midnight.

NBC TV network logo 200wBut then again we did have some great moments. There were many and here are a few, both good and bad, that come to mind:

Phelps becoming the most decorated Olympian, ever with 22 medals. And Usain Bolt, capturing his gold medals as expected. And this time around, Bolt seemed so much more mature than the last time I saw him wining medals.

Boudia coming out of nowhere, and capturing gold in men’s diving. And that poor woman who tripped yet again at another Olympic running event, was a heart-wrencher. And a double amputee competing on the track. (I wonder if he had won, how many people would have cried foul?)

Yet there was still some disrespect when gymnast McKayle Maroney showed complete disdain for winning a silver. Sure, she was upset, but hey, I saw many silver medalists who were very proud of landing on the podium. She embarrassed me.

And some folks seemed to think NBC was objectifying women with a video. But then again, should we have volleyball, gymnasts and track & field participants wear full length dresses while they compete? TV ratings includes some sex appeal, and I’m sure they were aware, but you can’t avoid certain scenarios when you combine athletic performance and camera placements.

Eh…

Even with the broadcast flubs, this was great TV entertainment each night… and now, it’s back to the regular routine of scripted and reality TV.

G’night all & here’s that medal chart I promised you, after all that ranting:

GSBTotal
1United States462929104
2China38272287
3Great Britain29171965
4Russia24253382
5Korea138728
6Germany11191444
7France11111234
8Italy891128
9Hungary84517
10Australia7161235
11Japan7141738
12Kazakhstan71513
13Netherlands66820
14Ukraine65920
15Cuba53614
16New Zealand53513
17Iran45312
18Jamaica44412
19Czech Republic43310
20DPR Korea426
21Spain310417
22Brazil35917
23Belarus35513
24South Africa3216
25Ethiopia3137
26Croatia3126
27Romania2529
28Kenya24511
29Denmark2439
30Azerbaijan22610
30Poland22610
32Turkey2215
33Switzerland224
34Lithuania2125
35Norway2114
36Canada151218
37Sweden1438
38Colombia1348
39Georgia1337
39Mexico1337
41Ireland1135
42Argentina1124
42Serbia1124
42Slovenia1124
45Tunisia1113
46Dominican Republic112
47Trinidad and Tobago134
47Uzbekistan134
49Latvia112
50Algeria11
50Bahamas11
50Grenada11
50Uganda11
50Venezuela11
55India246
56Mongolia235
57Thailand213
58Egypt22
59Slovakia134
60Armenia123
60Belgium123
60Finland123
63Bulgaria112
63Chinese Taipei112
63Estonia112
63Indonesia112
63Malaysia112
63Puerto Rico112
69Botswana11
69Cyprus11
69Gabon11
69Guatemala11
69Montenegro11
69Portugal11
75Greece22
75Moldova22
75Qatar22
75Singapore22
79Afghanistan11
79Bahrain11
79Hong Kong, China11
79Kuwait11
79Morocco11
79Saudi Arabia11
79Tajikistan11

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