ESPN pulled out every stop in tonight’s broadcast of the Saints’ first home game in the post-Katrina era. GMA’s Robin Roberts was there. Spike Lee was there. Harry Connick, Jr. was there. And the game was a made-for-tv feel-good tale: The Saints blocked a punt, block a field goal and ignited what shaped up early as a rout.
Announcers Mike Tirico, Joe Theisman and Tony Kornheiser (who seems to grow more comfortable the less he tries to be funny) periodically pointed out (rightly so) that while all was happy-happy inside the repaired and renovated Superdome, too much outside was still sadly undone. The residents of New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast are still being victimized , this time by an inept system that seems incapable of doing right.
And yet the night would best be characterized as a four-hour info commercial, brought to you by the Please Come Back to New Orleans Committee.
I’ll strangle my cynical strain for the night. The area needs a break.