Twenty Twelve: Our Olympic mishap highlights
As we embark on the final week of the London 2012 Olympics I can’t help but wonder how Head of Deliverance Ian Fletcher is faring. Are things going to plan? Is Siobhan Sharpe rubbing shoulders with celebrities in the NBC tent? Is Kay Hope still waiting for the electric cars to charge up? Has Graham Hitchens managed to order a pizza without anchovies yet?
For those not in the know, Ian Fletcher is the lead character of the successful British comedy, Twenty Twelve. The comedy focuses on the ‘Olympic Deliverance Committee’ as they try and plan the biggest event in London’s history. Needless to say, nothing ever goes according to plan. Favourite characters include irritating PR guru Siobhan Sharpe, Head of Sustainability and full time hippy, Kay Hope, no nonsense Head of Contracts, Nick Jowett, and pizza loving Head of Infrastructure, Graham Hitchins. Not forgetting of course poor, worn out Head of Deliverance Ian Fletcher.
The charm of Twenty Twelve lies in the way it blurs the line between fiction and reality. Sometimes it’s difficult to know where the ‘mockumentary’ ends and real life begins. In the run up to the Olympic Games, security services company G4S revealed that sleepy students hadn’t bothered to turn up for training. As a result, the army had been drafted in to ask us to remove our shoes and empty our pockets as we go through the airport-style security machines.
It smacked so much of a Twenty Twelve storyline that it became even harder to determine which stories to believe and which to dismiss as fiction. Surely the army aren’t really taking on students’ summer jobs? That must be fiction. (But apparently, someone really has filled a starting pistol with live ammunition!)
Unfortunately, since they began on the 27th July, the Olympic Games seem to be running alarmingly smoothly. Nevertheless, there have been a number of instances that could easily have been written into the plot of this successful British comedy. Here are some of the favourites.
1) Missing keys:
Policemen lost a set of keys at Wembley Stadium as they conducted checks before the start of the football competitions. After extra officers, who were brought in especially to search for the missing keys, failed to track down the offending items, the locks had to be changed so as not to compromise security. A tense moment for the ODC, I’m sure.
2) Flag mix up:
This was better than a boycott over the shared belief centre. The North Korean flag was raised instead of the South Korean flag at the start of their women’s football match early on in the Games. The North Korean team walked off, delaying kick off by an hour. I can just picture Ian Fletcher staring at the TV in disbelief.
3) Empty seats:
Let’s make no bones about it; empty seats are the biggest upset of the competition so far. After failing to get tickets for the swimming, my parents invited the whole family over to tune into the Beeb’s coverage. Five people crammed into a three seat sofa, kids on the floor, Granny in the armchair. As it turned out, there were plenty of empty seats in the Olympic Stadium.
So if you need a quick sit down, Stratford is the place to be. Although you might find yourself sitting next to bemused army cadets who have been brought in to fill the seats. (Is the army our solution to everything? Wait, don’t answer that.) Apparently, organisers have asked volunteers to bring an extra shirt in to work to avoid standing out when they are conscripted to fill the empty seats. That’s some top notch blue sky thinking. Did someone say Siobhan Sharpe?
4) Boris on a wire:
Last Wednesday, after being invited to Victoria Park as a special guest, the London Mayor was harnessed up and sent hurtling down a wire, waving two Union Flags as he went. Unfortunately, Boris got stuck half way down. He was left hanging, trussed up like a turkey in a harness, flags hanging limply by his side. Actually, this one’s probably too farfetched to be a Twenty Twelve storyline. I still can’t quite believe it myself.
5) Jeremy Hunt’s bell:
As Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt rang a bell to mark the start of the Olympics the bell flew off its handle and narrowly missed a woman’s head. An ominous sign if ever there was one. Jeremy laughed off the incident, claiming he now had his very own ‘Twenty Twelve’ moment.
On that note, let’s spare a final thought for the Olympics Deliverance Committee. Where are they now? Siobhan Sharpe is working on her own spin off show “Look Sharpe”. God help us. Kay Hope is probably still trying to sell off the Olympic Stadium to Deptford Athletics Club. Graham Hitchens is looking forward to the closing ceremony on Sunday (“What, this Sunday?”) And Nick Jowett doesn’t care who you are, because he’s from Yorkshire. Finally, Ian Fletcher is enjoying himself in Umbria, safe in the knowledge that although Boris might be hanging in mid-air in Victoria Park, at least he’s not schmoozing with Rupert Murdoch at the swimming finals..Tagged in: boris wire, G4S, Ian Fletcher, jeremy hunt bell, London 2012, olympics, south korea flag, Twenty Twelve
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