The fetishising of Team GB feeds into the notion of medal hunting, of glossy PR at the expense of sport for all
In medical practice the phrase “the dose is the poison” is sometimes used to describe the principle that an excess of anything can be deadly. Take enough of it and it will kill you, from kitten tears to unicorn laughter to everyday ingestion of diesel residue from your own family car.
At times during the BBC’s coverage of the Winter Olympics it has been tempting to wonder if this rule also applies to extreme, nauseating doses of public niceness; if it is possible, given sufficient exposure, to die of niceness.
From Russia’s drug-abusing to North Korea’s cheerleaders and way too much Mike Pence, the dystopian Games bode ill
I think I could watch any live sport in the world for hours on end and still be entertained. If the BBC broadcast the Annual Over 50s Poohsticks tournament, not only would I watch the whole thing, but by the end I would be screaming “Spin the stick in midair on the drop, Clive!” at the television.
That’s why I’m in love with the Winter Olympics: I love the weird sexy tentacle intro, I love how excited Amy Williams gets about ice, and I love how Clare Balding spends a surprising percentage of the show talking about the Norwegian curling team’s trousers. And yet, despite the smiles and incredibly mild banter of the BBC hosts, it’s hard to shake the feeling that this Olympics is different. Pyeongchang feels like the Olympics to match our times – dark, chaotic, and with way too much Mike Pence in it.