Archive for the ‘Hockey clichés’ Tag

Clichés

I just watched a video preview for the HBO tv show that will follow the Caps and the Pens on and off the ice as they prepare for the next Winter Classic. We don’t really often get a chance to see that much footage of the teams off the ice (besides the players interviews and stuff like that), so I was kind of hoping for some stuff that would surprise me a bit, or at least change from what we usually are shown.

Well so much for that. I was struck instead by the amount of clichés used in that 12 minutes preview. Granted, that was just a preview, and HBO has a target audience that is not limited to hockey fans (luckily for them I guess…), so it was expected that they would rely on those clichés. But still, it made me think about how hockey is ALWAYS portrayed in the exact same way on tv documentaries and shows that don’t focus immediately on the day to day coverage of the game results.

THE biggest hockey cliché

Every single time, these will include the following (sometimes in that order, but not necessarily):

– some kids playing outdoor hockey while the narrator pontificates about the roots of the sport

– a player skating, stickhandling, and/or shooting pucks at an empty net, alone in a dark and empty arena.

– a mention of the Stanley cup as the “ultimate prize”, the “hardest trophy to win in all sports”, or the “holy grail”

– close-ups on the grimacing faces of guys lifting weights in the gym (because you need to do that to get that cup)

– shot of players jumping out of the bench in slow motion, in a darkened arena

– MULTIPLE close-ups of guys lacing their skates, taping their sticks, putting their shoulder pads on, and sharpening their blades (because sparks look great and it’s just like someone sharpening a sword, which fits well with the usual “soldiers preparing for the battle” lazy analogy that the narrator usually used at that point)

– the camera following players walking in the corridor from their dressing room to the ice (with muted sound of the crowd cheering in the background)

– shots of fans cheering in the stands or waiving playoffs towels

– at least one slow motion shot of a puck bouncing on the ice, presumably during a face-off

– a series of bodychecks (half of which are actually charging penalties) filmed from the behind the glass, while the narrator lazily explains how tough players are

– a toothless player grinning on the bench because hockey players are not only tough, they’re also crazy goofy guys

– a brutal fight

– a coach going Playfair behind a bench

– a few classic highlights (crazy looking goals generally, and maybe a big glove save)

– a pile-up of players filmed after a team wins a playoff series

And I’m sure I’m still missing some… I find it a bit sad to see hockey so often reduced to these clichés. I think it has much more to offer than that, no matter how nice and flattering some of those images are.

If you can think of any other clichés I missed, leave them in the comments!

Posted December 9, 2010 by Grrrreg in Uncategorized

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Trap, trap, trappity trap!

trapping_tradition1

I’m just kidding, devils fans. You should embrace this proud tradition though, instead of defending yourselves everytime someone blames New Jersey for the death of hockey. Each team carries its own clichés. The red wings have the octopus, the panthers have the plastic rats, the senators have the unconfortably weird spartan playoff intro, the ducks have Pronger (ouch), the coyotes have the relocation rumors, the flyers have the goonery, the habs have the riots … uh the cups, and your devils have the glorious trap. And some cups, too, by the way. Honestly, it’s not that bad.

So, after a night where absolutely nothing happened in Atlanta, the habs  play their last game before the All Star weekend in Newark. From a habs point of view, this game will be interesting because it will mark the return of Koivu and Price. (What do you mean, Price played yesterday?? I told you nothing happened yesterday, there was no game to speak of.)

The question is, how does Carbo change his lines to make room for Koivu?

unbranded-discovery-world-chemistry-set-100-experiments-f-e-v-aDon’t mess with chemistry, Carbo…

Until last night, the habs had been pretty hot, without many supposedly key players. The team found an equilibrium, with the following lines:

Kovalev-Plekanec-Pacioretty

Kostitsyn-Lang-Kostitsyn (a.k.a. the Titty Titty Gang Bang line. Brilliant.)

Latendress-Lapierre-Kostopoulos

Begin-Chipchura/Stewart-D’Agostini

The only line I would disrupt right now is the 4th line. But can you really play Koivu on the 4th line? That’s tough. And it’s gonna be even more difficult when Higgins and Tanguay return. Well, I guess Carbonneau will have the opportunity to see how to deal with a lineup full of good players at the All Star game…

The game is also important for Montreal, of course, because the Devils are a direct rival in the Eastern Conference standings, and because it would be nice not to be left pondering for the next five days over two losses in a row…

montreal_price

Go Habs go!

Posted January 21, 2009 by Grrrreg in Uncategorized

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