Author's note: There are spoilers, though it's not like there's anything ground breaking. If you want to go into the show completely unaware of what happens, you should probably stop here. Also, you can catch the first episode here.
So tonight NESN debuted "Behind the B", a 24/7-eqsue show that grants people an inside look into the Boston Bruins organization. The show ran for an hour and was narrated by Dennis Leary. I want to apologize to everyone for not having a live stream as I'm still learning how to stream from my TV. I also contemplated and toyed with the idea of having a live webcast while I watched the show and looking back, I'm glad it didn't happen.
The initial reason for me not setting up a live webcast was my run went longer than I expected. I'm actually surprised I didn't break my ankle running at night because I can barely see down the hall at night. Anyway, I watched the first half of the show and actually turned it off around Milan Lucic's part because I was bored.
If you've watched HBO's 24/7 or Hard Knocks, you get the gist of this show. It's supposed to give you an inside look that not many of us are lucky to see and while there were some pretty great parts (front office talking about whether to trade Tyler Seguin, John Whitesides giving the rookies the business) – most of it seemed to be filler with player profiles which are so. fucking. boring.
And that's where a lot of this fell flat for me.
After the jump, a complete review...
The show opened unbelievably. Claude Julien is talking to his team after that devastating Game 6 loss in the Stanley Cup Finals to the Chicago Blackhawks. You're not watching Claude Julien talk to his team, you're watching the reaction from the players. After Claude's done, you see some handshakes in slow motion – most noticably Jaromir Jagr and Cam Neely.
Then the Tyler Seguin stuff happened. I was all in man. One of the best parts was Chiarelli was sitting at a table with Jim Benning, Cam Neely, scouts and other staff and says:
"Tyler Seguin is a 35-40 goal scorer"
And there's crickets. No one says a word and Chiarelli makes a movement with his head like "Yeah, I fucking said it" and the rest chime in.
That shit is awesome. I could eat that up for days. That's what Bruins fans want to see. They want to see things they never thought would make the light of day. They want to see the General Manager talking about Tyler Seguin.
Then the player profiles happened. They showed Milan Lucic at home with his kid. They showed Milan Lucic at home talking about his kid. They just showed him being a dad. Maybe it's me, but nothing about watching someone parent sounds fun. I mean, I am a parent and I highly doubt people want to watch me play with my kids.
They showed Jarome Iginla working out at his home in Calgary. He talked about why he chose Pittsburgh instead (and notice I said instead and not over) of Boston. He talked about making up to Bruins fans.
And it is shit like this that could potentially bury the show.
Maybe it's my fault. Maybe I'm too plugged in to what happens with the Bruins now. I've been writing about this team since the 2009 season and doing it here on DOY since 2010. When a Bruin sneezes on Twitter, people retweet it and girls talk about it like it's the greatest thing since Internet pornography.
Maybe that's why seeing Milan Lucic or Jarome Iginla at home doesn't interest me. Maybe it's my fault for being completely batshit crazy enough to write and follow some team so in depth for the past four years.
Or maybe it's because they're boring.
There were some other weird things. The production of the show itself wasn't the greatest. You can definitely tell that whoever producded "Behind the B" is no HBO Sports. 24/7 and Hard Knocks have a genuine feel to them. Behind the B kind of felt like black and gold propaganda.
The music also blew. During a segment where David Krejci, Tuukka Rask and Joonas – yeah, Joonas fucking Rask – Rask were golfing, the music sounded like something ripped from a 70s beta porn. It was awful.
Anyway, the show has potential to be good. I think it needs to stay away from the player profile stuff because we know who these guys are. We know the names, we know the history, we get it. Like Cam said, Boston fans are smart. We do our homework on guys.
NESN, Bruins – show us more stuff in the front office. Show us the on-ice stuff when camp starts. Show us Claude screaming at someone. Show us John Whitesides chewing out Malcolm Subban again. Show us coaches meetings.
Don't show us where Patrice Bergeron is eating lunch.
We don't, or shouldn't, give a shit.
The next episode of Behind the B will be aired tomorrow, 9/10, at 4pm. Seriously. What the fuck?
So what did you think? Love it or hate it? Somewhere in between? What were your favorite parts?