I just set my DVR to record the Olympics Opening Ceremony tomorrow night, even though I haven't watched or cared about the Olympics since I was a kid. But now I need to know if it will be first contact, or the beginning of the alien war, or just a garden variety terrorist attack, or... who knows. Mostly, I want to see for myself the spectacle of symbolic imagery that William Henry and Chad Stuemke have been talking about.
Henry and Stuemke had another chin wag about the upcoming festivities on Revelations and it's a lot of fun. There is no question that the volume and organization of symbolism we've seen during run-up is staggering -- stargate symbolism, alchemical symbolism, pagan symbolism, alien imagery. Someone is having a lot of fun. And as ever, it's hard to say how much is conscious and deliberate and how much is the subconscious, intuitional, creative process.
While this year seems really over the top, in terms of imagery, I have to say that I really hadn't realized how much the Olympics has been playing with some of these themes in past years -- the alien thing in particular. I didn't know, or didn't remember, until I watched the Red Ice Radio video special, that the 1984 Olympics had produced a spaceship and a giant alien. Says Stuemke, of the 7'8" alien, "Out of this world. Didn't make a lot of sense. But people loved it."
That's the thing. It doesn't seem to make any sense as anything other than cheesy spectacle. The spaceship is kind of cool but the alien made me think of nothing so much as Waiting for Guffman. "Boring, boring, boring, boring, boring..."
But now that the alien theme has evolved into Wenlock and Mandeville, I have to consider the possibility that the Olympic committee is, and has been, trying to say something. My favored possibility there is that it's part of a kind of spiritual evolution zeitgeist and that we are at long last becoming "galactic humans." And I think Henry and Stuemke have really tapped the vein on a very powerful archetypal narrative that points in that direction. But if it turns out that it's really about the royal family orchestrating our total takeover by the reptilian overlords, all I can say at this point is God Save the Queen.