Watching the opening ceremony on BBC iPlayer 24 hours after it had actually happened, meant that I had been able to contemplate what I would have chosen to include in the ceremony had I been involved in creating it. I was unable to watch it live as I was at the Bristol Old Vic watching part of the Ferment festival. The thing I was hoping for was some reference to Shakespeare and a hint at something more traditional than just pop culture. My partner – with whom I was having the hypothetical discussion of ‘what would you do if…’, was hoping for some impressive guitar ensemble, culminating with some Queen song.
Although there were some parts that were very general, and not specifically British, such as the men and women at the very beginning wearing fairly plain clothes that could have been from anywhere in Europe or North America. Some film clips that were not British, and a lot that we can not necessarily claim as being truly summing us up as a nation. Over all I felt that Danny Boyle managed to create something that had at least one or (hopefully) more elements that everyone in the UK would have been proud of. An opening ceremony such as this, should be something that represents us a nation and in a cheesy way, makes us proud to be British. Mostly, that is how I felt. Given Boyle’s reputation from films such as Trainspotting, I also felt that it was quite retrained in a respectful way.
I am pleased he managed to get the Queen to do more that just wave – something the organisers of the jubilee pageant didn’t manage. Achieving such a slick performance, and smooth (although at times tenuous) links between sections. A good mix of references to literature, and modern culture, including some stuff that was so overtly British no one else would understand it (short clip from Kes). There was a short quote from Shakespeare and there was also a satisfying compilations of a wide rage of music including Queen. Not being the type of person who is even interested in sport, I was glued to screen through out, and when the Olympic cauldron was lit it was well worth the several hours of viewing to see such an interesting design that was bot visually stunning to watch it be lit and cleverly designed to create such an interested effect when the petals joined to creat one big flame.