Monday, June 08, 2020

ESPN 30 for 30 Vol IV - Lance - Part 2

Sunday night May 31, Sharon, Jack and I watched part two of the ESPN 30 for 30 Lance. My notes from part 1 are here. This is the fourth film in volume IV of ESPN's 30 for 30 documentary series. An episode guide for volume IV is here.

I will admit that Sharon, Jack and I were huge Lance Armstrong fans and passionate followers of the Tour de France during his seven year championship run.  I have continued to follow Lance on Instagram and in Facebook.

There are a lot of people who have had a strong negative reaction to this documentary. They point to Lance as a cheater and a pit bull that viciously attacked anyone that suggested he was cheating. There have been suggestions that Lance used this documentary to justify his actions and redeem himself.

I have a different perspective. I don't have outrageous anger at sports figures like Lance and Barry Bonds. They were under enormous pressure to stay healthy, show up everyday and perform. The amount of money at stake was insane. Given the number of people around them that were using performance enhancing drugs, I can sympathize with why they did it. In Lance's case, he wouldn't have been able to compete without the drugs.

My perspective is that this is an interesting story.  I enjoyed the documentary.  Lance is a compelling tragic figure.  Using so much interview footage of Lance makes it a different story, but not a bad story.  Over the years, I have come to the place where I view any biography I read or documentary I watch with a critical skeptical eye.

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