One of those writing projects I mentioned in the previous post is a book review I’m doing for the New York Post of Allen St. John’s book about the Super Bowl called The Billion Dollar Game. Really good book, by the way, and I’ll link the review here when it runs. But something in it is driving me absolutely crazy.
In Chapters 8 and 9, St. John talks to the FOX Sports director and executives in charge of the Super Bowl broadcast. They all make a really good point: despite the Super Bowl being the biggest game in the world, from a broadcast perspective, you simply can’t add 50 cameras over and above what you’d have in a regular season game even though everyone expects you to. It’s expensive for one thing in that if you add a camera, you have to add a tape machine, and a video editor, etc. etc. It’s also technically complicated, in that you still basically have a single director in charge of calling the show, and he can only see so many shots at a time. The better rule, the FOX guys believe, is to keep things relatively simple and go with the approach that got you through the previous 20 weeks or so. All of the extra cameras, bells and whistles “are really the meringue,” one of them says. “We need to make sure the pie is right, and the pie is a production of the game where everyone can see what goes on and knows what the hell just happened.”
Here’s a question: is it possible for these guys to get switched off of FOX’s football crew and reassigned to baseball? Because 90% of FOX baseball broadcasts are meringue, and I would really like some freakin’ pie next October.