Faced with the arduous task of following the 2008 Beijing Games' jaw-dropping opening ceremony spectacular, hailed by many as the greatest event ever even though it exposed the world to the singing voice of an ugly little girl, the organizers of the London Olympics have adopted the curious tactic of making it up as they go. They seem to be under the impression that, as in a brainstorm, there are no wrong answers when it comes to the planning of a live televised event that will be recorded in the annals of history and watched by millions around the world.
Now the Times of London is reporting that, in addition to nine geese, Friday's opening ceremony will also feature 30 Mary Poppinses fighting a 40-foot Voldemort [subscription only link], probably because someone suggested it as a joke but it would be embarrassing to scrap the plan now that they've already hired actors to portray the Poppinses.
But don't worry if you think this sounds ridiculous. 40-foot-Voldemort will be worked seamlessly into the ceremony's "Isles of Wonder" storyline.
Before 40-foot-Voldemort appears, "about 100" children will be wheeled out on hospital beds to perform "a choreographed 'bed dance,'" which sounds quite sexy but probably is not.
To these one hundredish beds will be added a dozen more "giant" ones, on which will dance/frolic/be such beloved storybook characters as The One Hundred and One Dalmatians' dog-skinning villain Cruella de Vil.
Then and only then will 40-foot-Voldemort himself arrive, rising up from yet another giant bed in the middle of the stadium. To recap: All the action to this point has taken place in some sort of bed.
The Times reports that Voldemort's arrival "will coincide with dozens of Dementors—creatures that feed off human happiness—streaming into the arena from all directions and scaring the children," because that's what Britain is all about.
At that point, the brood of Poppins will enter—from the ceiling, via umbrella (also: harnesses)— and vanquish the evil with strict yet loving disciplinary tactics.
Unconfirmed reports speculate that the opening ceremony may also feature bubbles.
Reuters writes that Olympic organizers have been promoting the Twitter hashtag #savethesurprise on screens inside the stadium during practices.
To prevent volunteers' leaking information about the exact details of the show.
Not because they're embarrassed.
[Sunday Times // Image via Warner Bros./AP]