Bad Ideas from the '90s: NBC's Summer Olympics Triplecast

The Olympics are coming! I know this because Harry Shearer talks about the growing boondoggle that is London 2012 every week on his radio program, Le Show. Otherwise, I might not be aware that it was happening. I don't follow sports, and as a result, I only ever really learn about it through osmosis. I wouldn't have given much thought at all to the 2010 Winter Olympics if not for The Colbert Report, and I was mostly aware of the 1992 Summer Olympics because of the news — and comedy — about NBC's Olympics Triplecast.

Twenty years ago, people watched the Olympics on television. (If memory serves, those televisions were steam-powered.) NBC held the American broadcasting rights, and someone there had the idea of not just covering it on the network, but also providing three different live simultaneous feeds on Pay-Per-View. Thus, the Triplecast was born … and already dying.

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