NBC's coverage of the Kentucky Derby comes your way later this afternoon. As part of the build up to the race, NBC sent Michelle Beadle up to the broadcast booth to call one of the many races that take place in the lead up to the Derby. With Fox attempting to turn Gus Johnson into a soccer announcer, it's NBC's turn to up the ante in the announcing game. The results show... potential?
There were definitely some positives there with Beadle's enthusiam - you always like to see that with prospective announcers. In terms of things to work on, there's asking out loud whether or not she's missed a horse and identifying horses mostly by color. Mike Mayock would call those teachable qualities, though. I asked Beadle about her debut in the broadcast booth after the race:
"I legitimately thought I was kicking ass... and then I had the wrong horse. Sad. Sooooooo sad. Pink looks like orange."
On the bright side, this was on par with Chris Berman's golf announcing skills, so NBC should feel pretty secure in giving this another shot.
You do realize this was a joke, right... No? Okay, let me explain how things like this work: The NBC team sits down to plan their broadcast, and the head honcho says, "Okay, what can we do that would be funny" and someone says, "what if Michelle pretended to be announcing a race, but messed it all up in a funny way," and the head honcho says, "Great idea--but what could she do wrong that would be funny?" and someone else says, "What if she called the horses by colors instead of by their names?" and the head honcho says "brilliant" and so that's what they do. Do you see what I mean? So when you criticize the performance on the grounds of "identifying horses mostly by color" that makes you sound like a dim sort of person who doesn't get any of that. Whereas, if you wanted to criticize this as "awful announcing" you'd say something more like, "the joke about calling horses by their colors fell flat." You see?