Video: NBC Criticized for Interview That Made Olympian Medal Winner Bode Miller Break Down in Tears. Miller Defends Interviewer. Other NBC Interview Questions That Some Consider in Bad Taste AP, Deadline, YouTube
After NBC aired an interview Sunday night, Feb. 16, 2014, that ended with U.S. Olympian Bode Miller turning away from the camera in tears and unable to speak, social media lit up with comments critical of the interview.
According to an Associated Press story, "Miller was a trending topic on Twitter" and "[C]ritics said the interview was insensitive."
"Richard Sandomir of The New York Times called it 'overkill,' Kami Mattioli of the Sporting News said [NBC interviewer Christin] Cooper 'repeatedly badgered' Miller and the AP's David Bauder called it 'a shameful spectacle.'"
However, Miller himself defended Cooper. The AP story says Miller tweeted today, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014: "I appreciate everyone sticking up for me. Please be gentle w christin cooper, it was crazy emotional and not all her fault. #heatofthemoment"
Writes our good friend Lisa de Moraes, the TV columnist for Deadline.com, "It’s not the first time NBC has been chastized during the Sochi Games for probing athletes’ personal wounds to score with viewers. The network has a long tradition of discussing the personal challenges and tragedies of American Olympians, in features and during victory-lap interviews, as a way to getting viewers more invested in those athletes. Last Friday, Meredith Vieira, filling in for Bob Costas, asked American skeleton racer Noelle Pikus-Pace about a miscarriage she suffered a few years ago. Pikus-Pace had retired after the Vancouver Games in 2010 to focus on her family, we learned, but changed her mind and came back to the competition in time for Sochi, where she won a silver medal. NBC Sports also has been criticized for asking American Olympian Katie Uhlaender, right after she missed securing a bronze medal by just 4/100ths of a second, how her father would have felt watching her performance. Her father died a few years back. Uhlaender began to tear up."
Here's the complete Bode Miller interview, including the lingering camera afterwards: