What is the deal with the commentary?

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TornadoAlex
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What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by TornadoAlex »

Virtually no updates by the commentator all day about the Tornado display until shortly before the Typhoon fly past he commented the Typhoon had issues and the Tornado display was also cancelled. Can anyone else confirm he said the Tornado was cancelled or am I going mad?

We watched the fantastic Mustang display and then left at 4 driving away from the show in utter dismay and disappointment we saw in the distance the Tornado doing its display.

We drove four hour round trip to see the Tornado display totally gutted to miss it. Lesson learnt to ask someone with a radio or take our own radio as the lack of updates from the commentary is terrible.

Anyone else have issues with the commentary and lack of updates or am I the only one?

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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

TornadoAlex wrote:Virtually no updates by the commentator all day about the Tornado display until shortly before the Typhoon fly past he commented the Typhoon had issues and the Tornado display was also cancelled. Can anyone else confirm he said the Tornado was cancelled or am I going mad?

We watched the fantastic Mustang display and then left at 4 driving away from the show in utter dismay and disappointment we saw in the distance the Tornado doing its display.

We drove four hour round trip to see the Tornado display totally gutted to miss it. Lesson learnt to ask someone with a radio or take our own radio as the lack of updates from the commentary is terrible.

Anyone else have issues with the commentary and lack of updates or am I the only one?


Jonathan Ruffle.

The man who informed Cosford's crowd last year how lucky they were to have heard a B-52 above the cloud. And this year was taken by surprise by one before his very eyes.

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AFKAMC
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by AFKAMC »

If we’re collecting Cosford commentary gaffes…

F-18 Raptor!
The previously undiscovered country of South Arabia (they have an air force, apparently).
The fact that a Boeing Stearman is so loud because the wing tips move faster than the speed of sound (presumably, the noise is due to the rest of the airframe tearing itself apart as it struggles to keep up).

clearstone
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by clearstone »

South Arabia - pretty much what is now known as Yemen. And yes, they did have an Air Force that flew Jet Provosts.

TYPHOON3
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by TYPHOON3 »

Was this commentator the only guy available within budget?I was expecting someone else after the negative feedback on the 2016 show.

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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

TYPHOON3 wrote:Was this commentator the only guy available within budget?I was expecting someone else after the negative feedback on the 2016 show.


The team was refreshed this year. Two of the three were new. Very surprising that comfortably the worst of last year's three was the one retained.

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Pringles
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Pringles »

AFKAMC wrote:The previously undiscovered country of South Arabia (they have an air force, apparently).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Arabia
As previously mentioned, the Jet Provost T.52A was in the colours of the South Arabian Air Force in 1967. The Stearman sound barrier thing you're referring to is something I've heard numerous commentators mention, and although I can't find if it's true, he's far from the only one to have mentioned it in his commentary As for the F18 slip, that's not bad considering he was speaking for almost 6 hours straight. The B52 miss Dan is referring to is due to the poorly located commentary position, over which Jonathan will have had no control, but don't let that stop you trying to further your own career, Dan :wink:
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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

Pringles wrote:
AFKAMC wrote:The previously undiscovered country of South Arabia (they have an air force, apparently).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Arabia
As previously mentioned, the Jet Provost T.52A was in the colours of the South Arabian Air Force in 1967. The Stearman sound barrier thing you're referring to is something I've heard numerous commentators mention, and although I can't find if it's true, he's far from the only one to have mentioned it in his commentary As for the F-18 slip, that's not bad considering he was speaking for almost 6 hours straight. The B-52 miss Dan is referring to is due to the poorly located commentary position, over which Jonathan will have had no control, but don't let that stop you trying to further your own career as a commentator Dan :wink:


Kid, I have no intention of ever commentating at another airshow. For a start, there's not one that can afford my fee, and it's something, aside from working with Ben and Spiv, I got very little pleasure out of. When work becomes solely about money, it really ceases to be worth bothering with.

Next...

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Russ
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Russ »

Pringles wrote:The B-52 miss Dan is referring to is due to the poorly located commentary position, over which Jonathan will have had no control, but don't let that stop you trying to further your own career, Dan :wink:

I wasn't there but if he failed to announce both the B-52 and B-1 flyby as it sounds, that's a pretty poor show. Neither is particularly inconspicuous. And as they were arguably the biggest coup for the show (and any UK airshow this year for that matter), a massive own goal. :down:

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Pringles
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Pringles »

Russ wrote:
Pringles wrote:The B-52 miss Dan is referring to is due to the poorly located commentary position, over which Jonathan will have had no control, but don't let that stop you trying to further your own career, Dan :wink:

I wasn't there but if he failed to announce both the B-52 and B-1 flyby as it sounds, that's a pretty poor show. Neither is particularly inconspicuous. And as they were arguably the biggest coup for the show (and any UK airshow this year for that matter), a massive own goal. :down:

You've just quoted my reason as to why? Both aircraft made their first approaches from the right, which is fairly obscured by trees from the commentary position. I said it last year and I'll say it again this year, some form of temporary position needs to be established much nearer to the crowd line to avoid future incidents.
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Ian G
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Ian G »

It's the propeller tips that hit the speed of sound thus giving the unique sound isn't it??!
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paulb1973
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by paulb1973 »

With any luck Cosford will obtain the phone number of Ben Dunnell prior to June 2018.

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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

Ian G wrote:It's the propeller tips that hit the speed of sound thus giving the unique sound isn't it??!


Correct. As per the Harvard.

borismorris
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by borismorris »

The B1 was announced. I know.. I was there.
The B-52 caught almost everyone out..
I was pretty much crowd centre at this time and it was only a few seconds after Sally B had passed l-r that the B-52 came in from Right.
As numerous folk have said before, the commentary position is way back from the crowdline. If I could barely see the B-52 coming in I'm not at all suprised the commentators were caught out too.

I didn't hear any mention of the Tornado being cancelled.

Amazes me how folk who were not even there can have such strong opinions on the matter.. what does it matter to you?

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CJS
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by CJS »

It matters greatly, I'd have thought that was obvious. :-P

Dan, can I assume I can't afford to book you for our school flower show in July then? There's cheap (not actually) hot dogs and everything!

Serious question though if I may - as others have said, who could manage to talk for 6 hours straight without a few gaffes? I'm pretty sure I rarely manage it! The key (in teaching) is to pretend they're deliberate then turn them into learning points...a little tricky at an airshow I grant you that.

But still, less than a handful of mistakes in a very fluid, changing live setting is nothing to write home about.

And no, I wasn't there.
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G-CVIX
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by G-CVIX »

I watched the live stream and yes I thought it was terrible, to the point that I turned the sound off.

Appreciate the whole reason why he apparently didn't see the B-52 but in my mind part of the job of commentator is to inform the crowd of aircraft inbound or rolling. For the same reason I get annoyed at RIAT when Bacon is bleeting on about ice creams and "get to the car parks", meaning Ben can't tell people that something has started it's take off roll.

Surely he should have been in on comms and heard the B-52 call up? So at the very least a "we can't quite see it but the B-52 is inbound" would have been achievable?

I don't want to be too critical because it must be a very hard job to do, but still.

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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Ryan. »

The B1b flypast was announced, the B-52 flypast clearly wasn't meant to be happen when it did as Sally B was still midway through its display and I never heard anything about the Tornado cancelling.

However, my issue was that for a large part it just felt like someone rambling and time filling. When someone picks up a program, starts flicking through it telling how lovely it is and what a well written letter there is at the start of it, it feels like filler. If you having got something worthwhile to say, then don't say it.

It didn't feel very researched or rehearsed.

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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

Ryan. wrote:The B-1B flypast was announced, the B-52 flypast clearly wasn't meant to be happen when it did as Sally B was still midway through its display and I never heard anything about the Tornado cancelling.

However, my issue was that for a large part it just felt like someone rambling and time filling. When someone picks up a program, starts flicking through it telling how lovely it is and what a well written letter there is at the start of it, it feels like filler. If you having got something worthwhile to say, then don't say it.

It didn't feel very researched or rehearsed.


An airshow commentary does not need to be relentlessly filling every second of airtime. This is something I fought George Bacon over at RIAT (he was running the radio station at the time, as well as meddling in commentary business every five minutes). It is OK to let some displays breathe, to give the crowd a rest from the commentators. An airshow is a long broadcast, everyone needs a breather over the course of it.

Ruffle's rise to airshow prominence is basically on the back of him being Sean Maffett's producer - as if this makes him an expert in the field. Other shows have brought him in to critique their output. Having heard the last two Cosfords, I'm not sure why.

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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by JJC »

Dan O'Hagan wrote:
Ryan. wrote:The B-1B flypast was announced, the B-52 flypast clearly wasn't meant to be happen when it did as Sally B was still midway through its display and I never heard anything about the Tornado cancelling.

However, my issue was that for a large part it just felt like someone rambling and time filling. When someone picks up a program, starts flicking through it telling how lovely it is and what a well written letter there is at the start of it, it feels like filler. If you having got something worthwhile to say, then don't say it.

It didn't feel very researched or rehearsed.


An airshow commentary does not need to be relentlessly filling every second of airtime. This is something I fought George Bacon over at RIAT (he was running the radio station at the time, as well as meddling in commentary business every five minutes). It is OK to let some displays breathe, to give the crowd a rest from the commentators. An airshow is a long broadcast, everyone needs a breather over the course of it.

Ruffle's rise to airshow prominence is basically on the back of him being Sean Maffett's producer - as if this makes him an expert in the field. Other shows have brought him in to critique their output. Having heard the last two Cosfords, I'm not sure why.


Agreed. One of the worst commentaries I've heard, up there (down there, perhaps) with Church Fenton in 2015. Too fond of his own voice, very patronising, poor/incorrect information. Felt like he was addressing a crowd of children. Kept making repeated weird comments during the P-51 display about CGI and FSX not being the 'real deal' and assuring us what we were seeing something special.

Crap through and through.
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Pringles
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Pringles »

JJC wrote:Agreed. One of the worst commentaries I've heard, up there (down there, perhaps) with Church Fenton in 2015. Too fond of his own voice, very patronising, poor/incorrect information. Felt like he was addressing a crowd of children. Kept making repeated weird comments during the P-51 display about CGI and FSX not being the 'real deal' and assuring us what we were seeing something special.

Crap through and through.

You have to remember though, that a great deal among the crowd were children, or families at least. In that respect, if just one or two of them heard what he was saying and decides to ask his parents if he can go to another airshow next week, instead of playing War Thunder or Ace Combat or whatever, then I'd say it was worth having to listen to him :up:
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JJC
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by JJC »

Pringles wrote:
JJC wrote:Agreed. One of the worst commentaries I've heard, up there (down there, perhaps) with Church Fenton in 2015. Too fond of his own voice, very patronising, poor/incorrect information. Felt like he was addressing a crowd of children. Kept making repeated weird comments during the P-51 display about CGI and FSX not being the 'real deal' and assuring us what we were seeing something special.

Crap through and through.

You have to remember though, that a great deal among the crowd were children, or families at least. In that respect, if just one or two of them heard what he was saying and decides to ask his parents if he can go to another airshow next week, instead of playing War Thunder or Ace Combat or whatever, then I'd say it was worth having to listen to him :up:



There is a difference between making the commentary accessible for everyone, and rambling non-sensical rubbish.
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by MarkL »

Extreme view.

I do not like commentaries. There, said it.

I would rather just watch and let the acts speak for themselves. Of all the airshows I've ever attended I can only really recall Maffet's missing man commentaries at various RIATs as memorable. That's not a good record.

I watch a lot of football at The John Smith's Stadium without the need for commentary. I've moaned at Sky to give me a 'no commentary' option on Prem League Football.

If you want act info, display slots etc, buy a programme.

Commentators seem to be on an ego trip these days, me no like.

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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by spellow3010 »

For me the B-17 exiting stage right with the B-52 hammering through immediately after was airshow gold. It was spectacular. Caught my daughter and I out and obviously the commentators. It all seemed 'unplanned,' which made for the spectacle. The B-17 going on to do at least one more pass before the B-52 came in again from the other direction. That was the highlight of the show for me. Those two visible in the sky together at the same time. One making smoke from an engine, the other making smoke from ALL engines :yahoo:

The B-1 pass, in the gloom, loud, proud and afterburning, well, no chance of a picture for me because I'd packed up in the drizzle, but that pass will live long in the memory. There's something about loud jets making a scene in the gloom :up:
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Re: What is the deal with the commentary?

Post by Xray833 »

I agree the main commentary wasn`t great and after a time I just switched off as far as it was concerned. The one that really did annoy me was the Chinook Display Team commentator. He was a cross between an Army RSM and the American F22 Raptor commentator. Too loud, shouting instructions “ GET YOUR CAM _ ER _ RA READY NOW!!!” and “cheesy” . Some have said enthusiastic but I found it very distracting. Just me or anyone else ?

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