Olympic Closing Ceremony 2012: London Misses Mark on Games' Conclusion

David DanielsSenior Writer IAugust 13, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 12:  Victoria Beckham, Geri Halliwell, Emma Bunton, Melanie Chisholm and Melanie Brown of The Spice Girls perform during the Closing Ceremony on Day 16 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 12, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

The word "timeless" apparently doesn’t mean anything to London.

The 2012 Olympic closing ceremony was geared toward entertainment, and it achieved just that. One Direction and the Spice Girls attracted an audience—23 million viewers, according to BBC—but will the ceremony go down as one of the most memorable?

Unless you call the UK home, not likely.

David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the performance had loads of style but wasn’t exactly packed with substance. He said of the ceremony: “Sure to be regarded as a wonderfully chaotic treasure trove by some and a hot mess by others with a taste for more regimented spectacle.”

And isn’t “regimented” always the most appropriate route to go for the most prestigious gathering on the planet? I mean, it worked for Beijing didn’t it?

China did everything right in the 2008 Summer Olympics. Its opening ceremony was one of the most memorable ever, and its close was just as extraordinary.

Now, don’t get me wrong. London’s performance was impressive. Plus, Beijing’s act was an extremely tough one to follow.

But it could’ve closed better.

Troy Rawhiti-Forbes of the New Zealand Herald labeled London’s ceremony “a pop culture smorgasbord that had touches of brilliance, beauty and bewilderment.”

“Pop culture smorgasbords” aren’t timeless. In fact, they’re the polar opposite. Pop culture is meant to appeal to the current target audience alone.

If ratings and instant hype are what London wanted, then it hit a home run. Its combination of musical performers and comedy acts without a doubt appealed to its viewers on Sunday.

I repeat, on Sunday.

The drums and lights of Beijing will be remembered forever. Comparatively, London just doesn’t measure up in terms of a timeless performance. 


David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.