ESPN 30 for 30

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Black Hat
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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#176 Post by Black Hat » Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:17 am

I've been very curious as to how the doc played with people unfamiliar with Fatso & Fruitloops so thanks for sharing your thoughts.

I think making a doc about Mike & Chris to use one phrase of theirs is a tough spot. If they made the kind of documentary you seem to want people like myself who grew up listening to them would be bored to tears, but if they went in the direction they did it would leave people like yourself scratching your head.

Keep in mind that Bristol is a part of the New York market with everyone there having listened to them. ESPN radio for instance wouldn't exist without Mike & Dog so those are a few reasons why the project was green lit.

Also you talk about New York as if it's Topeka and not like it's the city the whole world revolves around. Anything that happens here is always going to be a huge deal. This last sentence is a perfect of example of Mike & Chris speak.

WFAN itself has a massive signal so they show was heard up and down the east coast right up to the midwest. Also when the YES network came on board right as the Yankees were at the peak of their powers that expanded their name across the country.

I don't think you can 100% explain why Mike & Chris were so big. I think a lot of it like most things was right place at the right time - shifting media landscape right before the internet, explosion in sports, what was going on with New York sports at the time, as the doc said they broke a lot of news. I actually thought the doc did a good job capturing this, but again I'm coming at it from a different place than you. A lot also is because they were genuine which plays well in New York & New York radio in particular. They also were relics from a different era when things were less corporate or polished... the two were dinosaurs back in the 90s let alone now — that appealed to a lot of people. That was one aspect of the show that should have been expanded on to then include how funny they two were — they were hilarious — as well as the internet communities, memes, inside jokes between friends the show gave birth to that have only increased their legend. Bill Simmons for instance completely took their act and still pays homage to them on his very successful pod.

While Russo's been in Siberia over on Sirius Francesa in recent years — between falling asleep, supporting Trump & Deadspin savaging him — has become a caricature of himself. It's been a bit tragic to watch his decline as I think more people now listen either out of habit or to make fun of him. We all lose a couple of miles off our fastball when we get older, but very few of us lose it with millions listening for 5 and a 1/2 hours a day.

Ultimately I think they made the right decision by making the documentary for people like me, Mike & Chris fans, than people unfamiliar with them as we give a lot more of a shit.

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mfunk9786
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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#177 Post by mfunk9786 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:14 am

I'm not sure why someone who's a fan of the show wouldn't want the trip down memory lane that a more fleshed out documentary would provide, though.

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Fiery Angel
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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#178 Post by Fiery Angel » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:33 am

Black Hat wrote:Fatso & Fruitloops
Imus coined that, didn't he?

I too felt that 50 minutes was far too short. (We got a single five-second glimpse of the Schmoozer, Steve Somers.) Either give them two-plus hours or don't bother.

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Black Hat
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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#179 Post by Black Hat » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:36 am

What do you mean by more 'fleshed' out? Not sure what more there wass to flesh, not only did they cover everything you'd expect but they even got Mike to open up about his childhood/family along with going over the infamous 9/11 tapes Mushnick's been screaming about in his columns for years.

What I was saying had more to do with you wishing there were more clips of the show that really wouldn't be of interest to people like myself as we know the show.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#180 Post by Black Hat » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:39 am

Fiery Angel wrote:
Black Hat wrote:Fatso & Fruitloops
Imus coined that, didn't he?

I too felt that 50 minutes was far too short. (We got a single five-second glimpse of the Schmoozer, Steve Somers.) Either give them two-plus hours or don't bother.
Yep that was Imus... I've always been a Howard guy but Imus' sports updates with Breen back in the day which often times included making fun of Mike & Chris was a must listen.

As for the length, they definitely could have done more but then it would have gotten real inside baseball. An hour was a likely compromise when the idea was pitched... I'd think this would do well if it was released with a bunch of extras, additional footage.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#181 Post by Black Hat » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:54 am

Also mfunk I'm not sure how much of those classic tapes from the 90s even exist so keep that in mind. There's definiely no video of those years so that makes it tough. There's great moments from the YES Network days, much of which is up on youtube but they were kings by that point, like everything else the real crazy stuff happened on the way up the mountain.

My screenname here is actually not a nod to Jack Palance but rather a nod to a classic moment from Chris, who hates horse racing (as do I), the year he was rooting against Smarty Jones winning the triple crown saying he'll be watching wearing his 'black hat with relish'. Classic stuff.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#182 Post by mfunk9786 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:22 am

Black Hat wrote:What I was saying had more to do with you wishing there were more clips of the show that really wouldn't be of interest to people like myself as we know the show.
So clips of a show that you know and enjoy aren't of interest to you? That's the thing that I don't really understand.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#183 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:28 am

Black Hat wrote:
Fiery Angel wrote:
Black Hat wrote:Fatso & Fruitloops
Imus coined that, didn't he?

I too felt that 50 minutes was far too short. (We got a single five-second glimpse of the Schmoozer, Steve Somers.) Either give them two-plus hours or don't bother.
Yep that was Imus... I've always been a Howard guy but Imus' sports updates with Breen back in the day which often times included making fun of Mike & Chris was a must listen.
I liked it when Patrick McEnroe was the sports guy. Something about this very white-collar guy clashing with basically a cowboy was appealing to watch. I liked Breen and Warner Wolf too, but that sticks out from memory when I was watching the MSNBC simulcast back in the 90's. I hate talk/morning radio generally but something about Imus' grumpiness connected with someone who thought 8 AM was way too early to start the schoolday.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#184 Post by Fiery Angel » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:45 am

Black Hat wrote:Fatso & Fruitloops
Then there was Steve Somers calling them Mike & the Angry Puppy. (It sounds better in Somers' voice.)

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#185 Post by Black Hat » Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:23 am

mfunk9786 wrote:
Black Hat wrote:What I was saying had more to do with you wishing there were more clips of the show that really wouldn't be of interest to people like myself as we know the show.
So clips of a show that you know and enjoy aren't of interest to you? That's the thing that I don't really understand.
Are you a fan of Love on the Run or any episode of a sitcom that's a clip show? I don't think my view point here is really much of an outlier. If I want to watch an old clip of Mike & Chris I'll go on youtube.

flyonthewall2983 wrote:I liked it when Patrick McEnroe was the sports guy. Something about this very white-collar guy clashing with basically a cowboy was appealing to watch. I liked Breen and Warner Wolf too, but that sticks out from memory when I was watching the MSNBC simulcast back in the 90's. I hate talk/morning radio generally but something about Imus' grumpiness connected with someone who thought 8 AM was way too early to start the schoolday.
ha, how Imus turned himself into a cowboy will always remain a mystery to me. Had forgotten about McEnroe but he was good too, all the sports guys were good. Breen was mostly pre MSNBC, pre his MSG/NBC days so he'd go down some crazy rabbit holes current NBA fans would be stunned by. I was always a Howard person, but one of the reasons I felt Stern would trounce Imus was how many commercials Imus had. Howard had commercials too but he'd do them in long blocks, Imus had so many ads at times you didn't know when it was the show or a commercial.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#186 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 6:58 pm

I never bothered to find out if we got Imus on any of our local AM talk radio stations, as I thought it made for better television. The cowboy thing was probably him touching on his southwestern roots, and ostensibly connected eventually to the work towards the ranch. I've been scrounging for clips of the MSNBC show on YouTube and someone made the comment about how Stern's show kind of followed a similar trajectory to Imus, focusing more now on interviews and less on the shock-jock stuff.


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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#188 Post by Lemmy Caution » Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:21 am

Black Hat wrote:You always forget how many fights broke out in that era... all McHale got for the Rambis clothesline was a T. Amazing.
What's interesting is Rambis gets up mad, and a teammate tries to keep him away but seemingly pushes him so Rambo trips and falls over a photographer on the baseline. And, while tempers are flaring not far away, Larry Bird calmly walks over and extends a hand to help Rambis up. As if to acknowledge the Celts thwacked Rambo pretty good.

There have been fights in every era. It's a physical game.
When I think of NBA fights, what comes to mind is the scary 1977 incident in which Kermit Washington did severe damage to Rudy T after a fight broke out at one end of the court. Rudy was running towards the fight and Kermit saw a guy coming towards him at midcourt and threw a devastating/life-threatening punch. Or the various 90's Knick-Heat fights, and the two fights JVG got in the middle of.

And then there's the mother of all fights from back in 1966, in which Willis Reed beat up the entire Laker team, including the guys on the bench. Don't believe me -- take a look. There had been some elbowing going on, but apparently ex-Knick Darell Imhoff held Reed while LaRusso threw a punch at him. When the tape restarts, you can see Willis begin his impressive rampage by thwacking Imhoff who is holding him from behind, and then going after LaRusso who is in front and thereafter every Laker. A large man seriously enraged.

Reed and LaRusso were both ejected and fined $50. In the vid Willis says the League talked about banning him, until they found out LaRusso threw the first punch.

I think from the 60's to the 00's, teams used to have tough guys and enforcers, like Mo Lucas, Oakley, etc so teams knew that if they started anything or went after the other teams star, that there would be retribution.
The last decade or two, rules (such as getting suspended for leaving the bench and big fines) and hoops culture have changed enough to limit fights. These days all these guys are rather rich, while many are friendly from AAU tourneys, or all-star/Team USA -- so there's a lot more friendliness, maybe also partly a result of free agency where guys change teams frequently.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#189 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:51 pm

I've heard that ESPN is really putting their weight behind Nature Boy, at least compared with their other films. I've heard it's very good, so I'm quite looking forward to it even if it'll be difficult as a fan of Ric's to watch at times.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#190 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:21 am

Nature Boy is more effective on an emotional level. As a wrestling fan myself, I knew almost everything else but can understand that they made things a bit simpler for non-fans who might be interested. It does a good job explaining why he was so revered, not just for his talk but what he could do in the ring and how he can get people invested in watching a match that could sometimes go up to an hour or more. Hulk Hogan's easy admittance that Ric is way better than he is was testament to that too.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#191 Post by dx23 » Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:58 pm

Is not a 30 for 30 but the new Andre the Giant documentary by Bill Simmons team on HBO is being released on April 10. Here's the trailer.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#192 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sat Apr 14, 2018 3:10 pm

ESPN+ launched recently, with every 30 For 30 as part of the service. You can get a month's free trial of it until the 19th.

I'm on the fence about The Last Days of Knight. It paints a good picture of Bob Knight and how he basically became a God in Indiana (both sides of my family are diehard IU basketball fans to this day going back generations), and the power it lent him and how he abused it. But I didn't really come away with it being enamored of director/writer/narrator/CNN reporter who broke the story that lead to Knight's firing, Robert Abbott. I won't say he's too self-righteous perhaps, but the whole enterprise strikes me as his victory lap. Then again I could be seeing all this through my own candy-striped sunglasses.
Last edited by flyonthewall2983 on Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#193 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sun Apr 15, 2018 12:18 am

Catching up on more recent episodes. Phi Slama Jama was okay, but I get the feeling they're running out of college basketball stories to tell. Hit It Hard was more interesting than I might have given it credit for, mainly because now I want a Hollywood Henderson doc.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#194 Post by Polybius » Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:00 pm

flyonthewall2983 wrote: But I didn't really come away with it being enamored of director/writer/narrator/CNN reporter who broke the story that lead to Knight's firing Robert Abbott. I won't say he's too self-righteous perhaps, but the whole enterprise strikes me as his victory lap.
He deserves a parade that rivals the one from Cleopatra depicting her entrance to Rome.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#195 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:10 pm

Maybe so, but definitely not in Bloomington

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#196 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:16 pm

The Two Bills is adequate in it's form as a documentary from a technical sense, but otherwise it's like watching paint dry. About the only moment of entertainment came from a SportsCenter clip of Stuart Scott when the show was on fire. Parcells is on the verge of being interesting, but Belichick stays mostly dull throughout.

I imagine any Giants or Pats fan could get a kick out of it, but likely nothing they haven't heard before.

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#197 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:56 pm

I guess you're saying a Jets' fan wouldn't find this interesting. :wink:

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Re: ESPN 30 for 30

#198 Post by Polybius » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:18 am

Belichick's resignation presser is still one of the most Dada moments in sports history.

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