Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony
The Commonwealth Games was always going to have an uphill battle with their opening ceremony following the immense success of what we saw at London 2012.
Things didn’t start fantastically, let’s be honest. Getting a millionaire film star to plead for charity always grates a little. Stick a “Donate here” website link up, or have an official Commonwealth Game charity. Don’t ship Ewan McGregor in to smugly tell us about poor people.
Then we move onto the music.
John Barrowman warbling away is all very well if you’re camping it up in a gay club (or if you’re driving along listening to my music collection. Don’t ask.) To have him singing - with a Scottish accent, no less - to celebrate everything Scotland is proud of. Ten minutes later, once the song had stopped and we’d been reminded that we owe the land of tartan a hearty thanks for the likes of television, Nessie and Tunnocks Tea Cakes, it was revealed that Barrowman is in fact Scottish.
Not that he’s ever mentioned it before, nor is it a fact commonly associated with him. Also, he has an American accent and grew up in America. He couldn’t be less Scottish if you called him Pierre, wrapped him in a German flag and got him to sing Waltzing Matilda.
A truer case for Scottish devolution has never been felt by the people of England.
Rod Stewart and Susan Boyle both stood on stage, belting out a song. Both struggled at various stages, with Stewart openly indicating a problem with whatever was coming in through his earpiece. But that’s all ok, as next up is The Queen.
Following her display in the London Olympics where she was met by James Bond, and was then seen parachuting from a plane, you felt sure that the Scots would do something equally thrilling. When the Red Arrows (aren’t they English?) flew over, my hopes picked up that at the very least we may see a copycat attempt. Unfortunately Queenie merely appeared out of a car.
As I finish writing this section, the athletes are starting to be welcomed in yet another display of dancing which - not for the first time - is slightly disjointed and out of sync with each other. Not the first time that something similar’s been said at this football ground, I’ll wager.