Join 3,433 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


NFL Pregame Show Laughing
January 14, 2011 9:30 AM   Subscribe

The absurd amount of over-laughing that occurs during NFL Pregame Shows has long been a cliche. The Wall Street Journal recently calculated that one show spent 2 minutes and 22 seconds, or 11.6% of its length, laughing. But this recent video may be the defining moment of the trend, raising over-laughing to an art form.
posted by JoeGoblin (68 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
Looks like Deion's having a seizure there.
posted by kmz at 9:33 AM on January 14, 2011


The mirthless laughter of the damned.
posted by ryanshepard at 9:36 AM on January 14, 2011 [9 favorites]


Laughing off the homoerotic tension is the first thing they teach in professional sports broadcasting.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:38 AM on January 14, 2011 [53 favorites]


Man, a well-timed "that's what she said" joke could have them eating out of the palm of my hand.
posted by wabashbdw at 9:39 AM on January 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


That guy was literally rofling on TV. Jeeze.
posted by paisley henosis at 9:41 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


To be fair, "Danny Woodcock out of the backfield" is a pretty funny phrase.
posted by clorox at 9:41 AM on January 14, 2011


PS- COCKS! HAHA! COCK COCK PEEENISSSSS!
posted by paisley henosis at 9:41 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'll have what he's having.
posted by kinnakeet at 9:41 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I like the leg-clap move. I'm going to have to remember that one for my next board meeting.
posted by jeffamaphone at 9:41 AM on January 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


How does it stack up against morning radio?
posted by Joe Beese at 9:42 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


It only took three comments for the word "homoerotic" to appear here.
posted by proj at 9:44 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


If I got paid as much as they do to dress nice and talk about football, I'd laugh all the time too.
posted by HumanComplex at 9:45 AM on January 14, 2011 [13 favorites]


If I took a sip of light beer after every unintentional double entendre during an NFL broadcast I'd have alcohol poisoning by the end of the game. Generally, they include some combination of the following words/phrases:

"penetration"
"tight end"
"hard"
"hole"
"motion"
"big"
"backfield"
"up the middle"
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:46 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


... or maybe it's all the concussions.
posted by HumanComplex at 9:47 AM on January 14, 2011


Now I remember why I watch pigball on mute with music playing, and don't turn it on until kickoff. And, I love me some pigball, high school, college, professional, arena and Canadian variants.
posted by Mister Fabulous at 9:48 AM on January 14, 2011


The Card Cheat:

Usually on Monday Night Football there are at least 2-3 games/year where someone is having their Coming Out Party. Also, don't forget "wide receiver," "split end," "pounding the quarterback (or anyone position)."
posted by Mister Fabulous at 9:50 AM on January 14, 2011


"penetration"
"tight end"
"hard"
"hole"
"motion"
"big"
"backfield"
"up the middle"


"He hit the hole hard and penetrated up the middle" would be a pretty pedestrian sentence in football commentary.

It only took three comments for the word "homoerotic" to appear here.

And your point is... ?
posted by kmz at 9:51 AM on January 14, 2011


Predictable things are predictable.
posted by proj at 9:53 AM on January 14, 2011


Oh. Wood, cock, backfield? That's it? I had assumed there was some kind of football joke in there that I just wasn't getting. Like the time I spent a four-hour layover at O'Hare trying to ignore the group of what I took to be Mormon missionaries seated behind me: they were all yammering on about this and that allegedly good work and this and that Democratic politician who was singlehandedly ruining everything for everybody, when one of them paused (I missed the setup, I'm afraid) then said, loudly, "Well, it's not like I've been living among the Nephites!" And the whole group spent the next five minutes just howling over it.

So, what I mean to say is that I hadn't felt more withering contempt for a group of people until watching that last video. Thanks! My hate-lasers needed recalibrating.
posted by wreckingball at 9:54 AM on January 14, 2011 [11 favorites]


Politics needs more of this.

(Homoerotic tension, I mean.)
posted by The World Famous at 9:54 AM on January 14, 2011


Huh. Apparently football and Car Talk have something in common (beyond me finding them intolerable).
posted by brundlefly at 9:55 AM on January 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


> Also, don't forget "wide receiver," "split end," "pounding the quarterback (or anyone position)."

I can't believe I forgot "pounded." This could be an AskMe chatfilter thread of its own.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:55 AM on January 14, 2011


Loose ball! {ass slap}
posted by theredpen at 9:57 AM on January 14, 2011


I don't get it.
posted by ook at 9:57 AM on January 14, 2011


This is precisely why I cannot abide "Car Talk" on NPR. If I have to listen to another ten seconds of those windbags laughing at the same dull jokes, I will burn my radio.

On preview: Brundlefly beat me to it.
posted by idiotking at 9:57 AM on January 14, 2011


Oh, he said "cock." I get it now.
posted by ook at 9:58 AM on January 14, 2011


rofling on TV

ROTV
posted by DU at 9:59 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


It almost feels silly to point this out, but the man's name is Danny Woodhead, not Woodcock, so there's also that mistake contributing to the unbearable levels of hilarity wracking Deion Sanders's poor frame.
posted by Copronymus at 10:01 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's funny because his name isn't actually Woodcock. Right? The Youtube comments make me want to cry though, whenever I don't visit the site for a while I forget and accidentally read them again.
posted by antifuse at 10:02 AM on January 14, 2011


It gets said a lot about things like this, but this is completely and totally indistinguishable from a scene in a Tim and Eric skit. The sudden onset of hilarity, people in suits self-consciously walking around and doing stereotypical "I'M LOLING" things, and the camera panning around and doing random closeups of insincere men's twisted rictuses... awesome.
posted by cmoj at 10:02 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


The video is obnoxious. Good grief. Pure middle school mentality.

However, I wonder how much of that laughter is caused by the tension of having to do live television, pretty rapid-fire in its presentation (so none of the precious precious eyeballs flip away from the channel), and try to be semi-intellectual about an event which is basically a bunch of grown men running into each other over and over.

It cannot be easy to come up with nearly an hour's worth of material and present it in such a manner that it sounds thought out and reasonable and still make it entertaining. And in that kind of pressure, even the smallest of mistakes can cause the bottled up tension to seek immediate release.

And ultimately, football pre-game shows are sort of the Morning News Show of sports. They're intended to feel like a "party" with all these guys that you're "hanging out with" (hence the kind of living room-ish set) in order to have a good time before the game, leading into having a good time during the game, and so on.

Still, there's a moment in that video where there are coffee cups clearly visible near each chair. And I'm left to wonder just what is in those for the hosts to consume. Or how much they toke up before going on the air. Because that really seemed like stoned/drunk laughter to me.

Oh, yeah, and what Blazecock Pileon said. (I nearly said Blazehead! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!)
posted by hippybear at 10:05 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you read the video description, the player's actual name was "Danny Woodhead", which was misstated as Woodcock- that's what set Sharpe off.

But the leg clap was a pretty spectacular move.
posted by hincandenza at 10:05 AM on January 14, 2011


cmoj, is that a specific skit? I'd love to see it. Someone told me this reminded me of the Sammy Maudlin skits on SCTV (youtube)
posted by JoeGoblin at 10:06 AM on January 14, 2011


What's with the über-artsy camera angles? It's NFL coverage -- and I say this as a fan of the game -- not fucking cinema verité.
posted by grubi at 10:08 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


rofling on TV

I willing to watch chiroprody or even the crazy feldenkranz method on TV but rolfing is just a bit too much.
posted by GuyZero at 10:09 AM on January 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Re: the WSJ article and statistics presented therein - so, does Greg Gumbel hate his job, I wonder? Or does he enjoy being the outlier, as I suspect?
posted by milkfish at 10:14 AM on January 14, 2011


Don't they know they should be taking this more seriously?! It's football for god's sake!
posted by thekilgore at 10:14 AM on January 14, 2011


BTW, Joe Theismann is the one who uttered the classic line:
Nobody in the game of football should be called a genius. A genius is somebody like Norman Einstein.
I'm not finding a cite on this, but supposedly when he was later called out on it, he claimed that Norman Einstein was a really smart kid he knew in elementary school.

(Huh... maybe he wasn't actually entirely lying.)
posted by kmz at 10:15 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


A tie is like kissing your sister.
You win as a team, you lose as a team.
It's been a tale of two halves.
Turnovers will be the key.
The intangibles will be the key.
Statistics can be misleading.
Statistics tell the whole story.
That's the key statistic.
That's the key to the game.
You take what the defense gives you.
This is always a tough place to play.
We don't play these games on paper.
Both teams are playing at a high level.
We've got an intriguing matchup.
We've got the league's best offense against the league's best defense -- something's got to give.
These two teams don't like each other.
There's been a lot of trash talking.
There's no love lost between these two teams.
There's bad blood between these two teams.
When these two teams get together you can throw out their records.
It’s gonna be a war out there.
It's going to be a battle of the titans.
It's going to be a battle of epic proportions.
This is a game for the ages.
This is a pivotal game for them.
This is their watershed game.
They're coming off a heartbreaking loss.
A win today snaps their four game losing streak.
This game is for the bragging rights.
They're the sentimental favorites.
They match up well.
He gets the most out of his players.
There are no easy games in this league.
The season is a marathon - not a sprint.
Bad calls even out over the course of a season.
On any given day any team is capable of beating another team.
Good teams get better down the stretch.
They really have to take it to them.
They have to play with their ears pinned back.
They need to turn up the intensity.
They have to step up and make plays.
They have to come out of the locker room fired up.
They're loaded for bear.
They have to go out and take care of business.
They can't let the crowd faze them.
They have to get after it.
They have to rise to the occasion.
They have to leave everything on the field.
They have to stay hungry.
They have to keep the continuity.
They can't look past these guys.
They can't take these guys lightly.
They have to avoid a big letdown.
They have to come together as a team.
They have to believe in themselves.
They have to play within themselves.
They have to play like they're capable of playing.
They have to step up their offensive production.
They have to get the big guy involved in the offense.
They'll have to find a way to contain John Elway.
They'll have to find a way to limit what Elway can do.
They can't expect to shut Elway down completely.
They can't be intimidated.
They must control the tempo of the game.
They have to dictate the tempo.
They have to stick to their bread-and-butter offense.
They should stick to the fundamentals.
They have to eliminate the mental mistakes.
They have to dig deep.
They have to suck it up.
They have to crank it up.
They have to turn it up a notch.
They need to step up to the next level.
They must capitalize on their opportunities.
They have to take advantage of their opportunities.
They have to bend but not break.
They have to stretch their defense.
They have to shore up their defense.
They have to pull out all the stops.
They should just go out there and have fun.
They're playing for pride.
They're playing the role of spoilers.
They went 80 yards in the ensuing possession.
The final score was not a true indication.
The game was a lot closer than the final score indicates.
It's easy to be a Monday morning quarterback.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:19 AM on January 14, 2011 [11 favorites]


They totally got his name wrong... it's "PEENER MCFARTCAT".
posted by BobFrapples at 10:19 AM on January 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


I don't mind Car Talk so much (and in fact I actually enjoy the show), largely because they have something football shows don't: erudition.

Seriously, a couple weeks ago they were using "imprimatur" correctly in one of their answers.
posted by ubernostrum at 10:20 AM on January 14, 2011


My research team actually published a study* in The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology on this very topic many years ago. Our findings suggest that these TV personalities engage in over-laughing as a social, anxiety reduction practice because paying millions to grown ass men who dress up to talk about other grown ass men dicking around with a ball for millions of dollars is goddamn laughable.

I will refrain from giving my personal opinion on the matter.

* Cornell, U., Hammer, M. C., Norris, C., Foci, A., & Bach, J. S. (2001). Over-laughing on the television: anxiety reduction in the age of multi-millionaire TV personalities. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82, 1190-1204.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 10:20 AM on January 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


Twisted Rictus is a great name for a cover band.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:21 AM on January 14, 2011


It has less to do with the word cock and more to do with the fact that deion always does shit like this. Him and michael irvin.
posted by dead cousin ted at 10:23 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's not a funny football video. This is a funny football video.
posted by The World Famous at 10:24 AM on January 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


As a related aside, I'm in my late 20s, but taking undergrad level classes. In my recent class, the Neuroscience of Hearing, the row of juniors behind me just busted up every time the professor pronounced "cochlea" like "cock-lea." When he referred to "the vibrations of the cochlea," they were pretty much gone for the rest of the class.
posted by Ideal Impulse at 10:27 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Redskins squeeze out Browns.
posted by Chuckles at 10:29 AM on January 14, 2011


It has less to do with the word cock and more to do with the fact that deion always does shit like this. Him and michael irvin.

Proves my lifelong point: Dallas Cowboys are assholes. For life.
posted by grubi at 10:30 AM on January 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


I love laughing fits, especially when it's a whole group of people. Something inconsequential strikes someone or everyone and the laughing starts then snowballs: the rolling around on the ground, hysterical; the yips and yelps; an outburst of genuine, outlandish behavior that could easily be misinterpreted by those who weren't wrapped up in it.

It doesn't happen nearly enough anymore—at least without the aide of booze or drugs—and I miss it. Sometimes you'd get those pains in the back of your head and in your jaw from being almost too jubilant; I called them smile pains.

(Fun fact: smilepains@hotmail.com was my throw-away email address in '98 or '99.)
posted by defenestration at 10:37 AM on January 14, 2011


For a more refined bout of ROFLing during an actual commentary, we must listen here.
posted by i_cola at 10:39 AM on January 14, 2011


Jebus - what's with everyone laying on the ground wagging their legs? I unless is a precursor to some Hot Daddy porn - it's fucking obnoxious.
posted by helmutdog at 10:49 AM on January 14, 2011


Improoved link... Redskins squeeze out Browns.
posted by Chuckles at 10:51 AM on January 14, 2011


Metafilter: it only took three comments for the word "homoerotic" to appear here.

Just one of the many reasons why I love this place so much.
posted by killdevil at 10:57 AM on January 14, 2011


at least no one said "fagot" ... in Canada
posted by philip-random at 10:59 AM on January 14, 2011


My first thought was "Wow, these guys are 12 years old."

My second thought was Paul Newman (as Butch Cassidy) asking "Woodcock - is that you?"

My third thought was now I wanna see an old movie again.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:04 AM on January 14, 2011


"penetration"
"tight end"
"hard"
"hole"
"motion"
"big"
"backfield"
"up the middle"


Also forgot the Back Judge, with the initials "BJ" on the back of his jersey.
posted by LionIndex at 11:07 AM on January 14, 2011


Unintentional homo-eroticism in sports broadcasting will never get better for me than Bob Carpenter (St Louis Cardinals) declaring on the radio that some player I forget, who was hitting well for batting 8th, was "a good man to have in your 8-hole".
posted by ericost at 11:24 AM on January 14, 2011


This morning on my local "sports" talk radio show they did two minutes on Wes Welker getting interviewed and making ten separate oblique references to the the Jets' coach's sex life. Given the drama contained in the raw material, it amazes me that the high paid guys marketing this shit don't try and create a non-sexist product that would appeal to one half the freakin' population. Also I could not care less whether New York or New England wins that game.

I am rooting for the Packers!
posted by bukvich at 11:33 AM on January 14, 2011


I swear I saw this in Matthew Barney's Cremaster Cycle somewhere.
posted by eegphalanges at 11:36 AM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Goddamnit people, NFL pre game shows are serious business, keep it together for fucks sake. I wanted to know what Woodcock was was going to do in the backfield.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:04 PM on January 14, 2011


"at least no one said "fagot" ... in Canada"

For the "WTF?" readers in _this_ thread.... Big news 'o' the day up here north of the 49th is that our broadcast standards council is watching out for our welfare as only they can -- 26 years after the fact. (Although, personally, I think it's more a case that we were just jealous that we didn't have anything to compare with the "'nigger' in Huckleberry Finn" debate).
posted by Mike D at 12:26 PM on January 14, 2011


When he referred to "the vibrations of the cochlea," they were pretty much gone for the rest of the class.

This happens when I get to Kant in my introductory classes, too.
posted by joe lisboa at 12:29 PM on January 14, 2011


Big news 'o' the day up here north of the 49th

But yesterday's yesterday's news here on Metafilter.
posted by yerfatma at 12:38 PM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Maybe if they had that Frank Caliendo guy on like Fox does, they wouldn't be laughing so hard.
posted by evilcolonel at 2:02 PM on January 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Goddamnit people, NFL pre game shows are serious business, keep it together for fucks sake. I wanted to know what Woodcock was was going to do in the backfield.

You'll almost always see Woodcock start off with a firm stiff arm when he's asked to pound it through the A-gaps--gotta admit, those Patsy Gs are especially good at keeping the 1- and 2- holes unplugged for him. The guy is a monster penetrating up the middle, but when he's asked to slide it end around he's isn't bad either. He usually just makes one quick move at most before turning...

Wait, don't you mean Woodhead? What are we talking about guys?
posted by jng at 4:57 PM on January 14, 2011


Reminds me of my 11-year-old son.
posted by Michael Roberts at 5:10 PM on January 14, 2011


"He's going to fire into this guy right here..."

Auto audio, terrible layout...
posted by juiceCake at 8:18 AM on January 15, 2011


If I got paid as much as they do to dress nice and talk about football, I'd laugh all the time too.

Yup. These guys are laughing all right. All the way to the bank.
posted by MattMangels at 2:56 AM on January 16, 2011


« Older Slate says putting more than one space between sen...  |  The Decentralized Dance Party... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments