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   The London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony was "Great"
   A "Great" Opening Ceremony    (01.08.12

  I don't know about you, but there was something altogether
  uplifting about Danny Boyle's eye-opening, off-the-wall Olympics
  opening ceremony. It was often confused, confusing and
  confounding in the way it jumped in and around our pop culture
  and social history. But the first half hour was particularly
  spectacular, and the whole thing - warts and all - somehow
  managed to present the world with a quintessential snapshot
  of modern Britain and just what it is to be "British".

  Alas, from a toon perspective, at first glance, we appeared to have
  gotten short thrift. There were no obvious cartoon creations present.
  No Bagpuss or Bob the Builder, or Mr Men or Wombles, or Rupert,
  or Dennis the Menace. But if you were watching closely, there were
  at least two toon cameos worth noting here for posterity.

  The first was the appearance of a Yellow Submarine, towards the
  start of the performance, as the Sgt Pepper era Beatles took to the
  stadium. The second was slightly more surprisingly, coming in the
  form of Raymond Briggs' Snowman. It's a cameo that slipped my
  attention until animator/director Roger Mainwood dropped us a line.
  Roger's been hard at work on "The Snowman II", of course. That's
  the film sequel that's launching towards the end of this year, with
  Mr Briggs' blessing. Anywho, Roger steered me towards the film
  and TV montage, playing on the exterior of that suburban house set,
  halfway in to the ceremony. And sure enough, there was our famous
  flying friend, flashing up as Annie Lennox  sang "Sweet Dreams".
  Cheers for that, Roger!

  So we at least got two toons. But you know, The Hound reckons
  there was a third, only, this one came in the form of an idea. One
  that pervaded the whole ceremony. You see, as he was watching the
  night's procession this dawg was reminded very much of that
  brilliant, award-winning Bob Godfrey film Great. Like that film,
  we had the central conceit of Brunel, presenting himself to the
  world, and just like that film, his appearance was accompanied
  by a riotous Rolodex of images and footage and sights, sounds
  and songs. That bizarre juxtapositioning and satirical tone drove
  the opening ceremony forward to its climax, and the lighting
  of its unique flame - one that will burn throughout the fortnight
  of the Games. As for the Ceremony itself, well, that will surely
  burn bright in the memory for much, much longer. And, yes,
  it was most certainly "great"...
                                           More: Bob's Godfrey's Great


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