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On CBS TdF coverage(14 posts)

On CBS TdF coveragemike mcmahon
Jul 30, 2001 8:24 AM
I thought this editorial piece regarding CBS Tour coverage was pretty good:

The irony, however, is that it is written by an L.A. Times columnist, and the Times ran, at best, a one-paragraph piece on each stage of the Tour until Armstrong started winning. This year, almost any time a picture was run in the Times in connection with the Tour, it was a picture of Armstrong. I would wager that the majority of the headlines accompanying Tour articles mentioned Armstrong's name. Oh well, at least this editorial piece got it right. Armstrong's a great story, but he's not the whole story.
Mike, excellent post (as always.) Thanx. (nm)RhodyRider
Jul 30, 2001 8:35 AM
I dunno, I've seen worseclub
Jul 30, 2001 8:48 AM
since I don't get OLN (though a friend taped the MT stages for me so I got to see then anyway) I passed on an epic backcountry MTB ride to be home at noon to see CBS (well ok, I was tired from the previous week's riding anyway). I've seen worse coverage, at least John Tesh wasn't involved...As for boiling down the final stage: So what? You want to watch the peloton circle Paris what, a dozen times? The LA interviews were interesting, especially his response to the doping thing. I'm getting real tired of all the Lance commercials, not that I don't wish him all the sponsor cash he can get. I thought CBS did an okay job, considering the disinterest of the mass market they serve. The thing about the calories and the water intake, hey that's interesting too. Though someone years ago did it better, piling one rider's total food intake for one Tour day on a big table, it was a lot, a lot, of chow.
Teshmike mcmahon
Jul 30, 2001 9:40 AM
Yes, the lack of John Tesh "music" was one of the few things CBS got right with its Tour coverage. Maybe next year they can run a continuous loop of Kraftwerk's "Tour de France" behind the coverage.

BTW, didn't it bother you that the green jersey was a non-issue on CBS?
Yes, John Tesh ain't my cup of tea either, but did you know ....Greg Taylor
Jul 30, 2001 10:39 AM
...that he had assigned the royalties to one of the tunes on his Tour de France suite to the Lance Armstrong Foundation? Kinda cool.

BTW, John Tesh was the musical entertainment at the Lance Armstrong Gala dinner the night before the 2000 Ride For The Roses. It was actually a pleasant surprise...he was pretty funny and self-effacing about the "selective appeal" of his music.
Better than I expectedbianchi boy
Jul 31, 2001 5:06 AM
The CBS coverage on the first Sunday was so bad (remember 15 minutes on the Battle of Dunkirk) that I was surprised at the quality the next two weeks. Not up to OLN standards I'm sure (not that I would know), but probably as good as you can expect from network TV.

BTW, my local newspaper, The News & Observer of Raleigh, NC, ran daily articles about the Tour throughout. On Monday, they had a front page refer and three articles in the Sports section, with stats on the past 3 tours and lots of photos and graphics. I was really impressed. However, even with 3 articles, they failed to mention the winner of the green jersey (or polka dot). They also included the seemingly obligatory article with inuendos about whether Lance uses performance enhancing drugs.
I really liked the "Sweet Dreams, Lance" Commercial...Greg Taylor
Jul 30, 2001 10:31 AM
I thought that it was pretty clever. I'd have to agree that the Lance-centric coverage on CBS was much better than nothing. Gotta remember that the TDF only pops up on the domestic radar if (1) an American is really kicking butt, or (2) there is some spectacular blooper-reel "Wide World Of Sports Opening Montage Ski-Jumping Dude" wreck or other tragedy. The event lasts too long to hold the continuous attention of the average American. Hate to say it, but it is a sport that has to be edited digestible bites and "dumbed down" so folks exposed to it only once a year can have a basic concept of whata they are watching, and then the USA angle has to be played up to provide an excuse to broadcast it at all.

That said, there is hope. The main headline for today's Washington Post was Lance's victory -- complete with color picture. How 'bout that?
re: On CBS TdF coveragemr_spin
Jul 30, 2001 9:06 AM
A few years ago, some network showed a track meet live on TV, which got some pathetic rating, maybe even lower than the CBS Tour coverage did.

One TV critic wrote "we're not sure if anyone actually watched, because the rating could be fully attributed to the number of pets who accidently turn on the TV by stepping on the remote control."

Maybe CBS will get out of the pathetic Tour coverage business next year. I hope so. OLN has shown how it is supposed to be done.
pathetic is better than none at all...jayz
Jul 30, 2001 10:31 AM
im surprised you would say that...
we all complain about how little coverage cycling gets..and then when it does get coverage, we complain about that too!!

i opened the paper today to see a life size picture of Nomar (red sox)...great..isnt he on the front page every week??? but there in the corner was a 2" by 2" picture of lance with the "full" story on page D4. be honest, i was glad that CBS aired some coverage.
even if you are not into cycling, its a hell of alot more interesting than watching golf on TV (nothing against just surprises how many people WATCH golf on tv). im sure it interested some new people.... you couldnt peel my mom away from OLN this year!!

and so what if there was a ton of lance commercials..i know..i know...there is more to the tour than just lance. but seriously, we might be lucky that we even got that.

the more people that support cycling, the better off it will be.
no coverage is better than lame coveragemr_spin
Jul 30, 2001 11:01 AM
If CBS isn't going to take the race seriously, they shouldn't bother airing it. And none of us should watch. The more people watch, the more "right" CBS thinks it is. The last stage got 3 1/2 minutes? That's about the time it takes to cover half a lap on the 10 lap finishing circuit.

The non-OLN coverage I've seen of the L'Alpe d'Huez stage shows Lance looking back (The Look), then taking off, followed by him crossing the line. The drama leading up to the final climb with Lance struggling is lost. The shear difficulty and mystique of the climb itself is lost. The fanatical religious zeal of the spectators lining the route is lost. The vicious attack by USPS on a 14% grade that ripped apart the group is lost. In the end, it looks like a basic hill climb, and anyone with a bike can do that. What's the big deal? Cycling isn't so hard. So Lance is a little stronger than the other guys, so what? Can we watch golf now?
re: On CBS TdF coverageBosephus
Jul 30, 2001 10:36 AM
Here's the general public that CBS serves ... classic American made "Redneck Pride"

Redneck Pride
TdF made the FRONT page of the local paper.E3
Jul 30, 2001 11:09 AM
Today's Midland Reporter Telegram (Midland TX) ran a top-of-the-front page story that featured interviews with local people talking about how Lance and the TdF inspired them. The highlight front page photo was of a local racer loading his bike (a Litespeed) into his van for a weekend trip to ride in the Davis Mountains.

The piece prompted quite a conversation around the morning coffee pot in my office about cycling and TdF, territory that is usually dominated by golf.
Ditto in Denver...Lazy
Jul 30, 2001 12:11 PM
Lance was on the front page of The Rocky Mountain News!
Phoenix gave coverage on the 5th page of sports. That's it.jdl
Jul 30, 2001 1:10 PM
Phoenix gave coverage on the 5th page of sports. That's it.