Rio 2016: Most Memorable TV Moments From the Olympics (So Far)

Updated Aug 12, 2016

The volume of TV and streaming coverage coupled with the intense social media focus means there are already myriad memorable moments from the 2016 Summer Olympics. Here's a look at Rio's best bits so far. (Do come back, as we'll be updating this post throughout the first week.)


Simone Biles shared the golden spotlight with another American named Simone: 20-year-old swimmer Simone Manuel. Not only did she set an Olympic record in the 100-meter freestyle (along with Canada's Penny Oleksiak), but she became the first African-American woman to win an individual Olympic swimming event. Her reaction upon seeing her time was everything.



In his own words, the CBC's Elliotte Friedman "blew it." The broadcaster called the entire 200-meter individual medley while confusing Michael Phelps' lane for Ryan Lochte's.



Backstroke swimmer Fu Yuanhui didn't realize she had won a bronze medal until a minute into this post-race interview with Chinese state television. That was just one in a series of winning moments for the 20-year-old.



The United States' breakout gymnastics star, Laurie Hernandez, was born in 2000. Let that sink in for a second. OK, she was a delightful beacon of positive energy throughout the two nights of the team competition. But she showed just how cool and clutch she is when, before nailing her balance beam routine in the team final, she whispered, "I got this." Go ahead, Lolo!



Aly Raisman's nervous parents (see below) are arguably the most adorable Team USA supporters in Rio, but the cutest has to be little Boomer Phelps.



South Africa's Chad le Clos tried to psych out living legend Michael Phelps before a race, but the 19-time (and counting) gold medalist was not having it. The best part: it all happened in front of TV cameras.



Olympic diving + networks' scoring graphics = accidental nudity.



German gymnast Andreas Toba tore his right knee's ACL during the qualifying round of the men's team event. But after shedding more than a few tears, he gritted his teeth and hobbled back to the floor to compete in the pommel horse so his team could qualify for the finals.



In the snap heard 'round the world (or at least throughout the arena), French gymnast Samir Ait Said fractured his tibia while attempting to vault. It was… rough.



Spanish swimmer Miguel Duran Navia was in tears after his false start appeared to ruin his Olympic dream. But the judges ruled that a noise in the arena likely affected the 20-year-old, who was brought back to the pool to take his place and enjoy some love from the crowd.



SNL and Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones has Olympic spirit to spare. Her Twitter commentary was funnier than anything on NBC, which the network noted. The comedian scored herself an invite to join the team in Brazil.



Back in the terrifying world of gymnastics, Ellie Downie landed on her back during a floor exercise tumbling pass. After attempting to continue, she stopped. Remarkably, she was back in time to vault, giving the team (which includes her sister) a score it needed to qualify for the finals.



Swimmer Lilly King is not here for Yulia Efimova, who was, in a… controversial move, allowed to compete in Rio after getting caught up in Russia's wide-reaching doping scandal.



We are all U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman's parents.


2012: @alyraisman's parents were very nervous. 2016: STILL NERVOUS

A video posted by NBC Olympics (@nbcolympics) on


The utterly dominant top player in men's tennis, Novak Djokovic, started his Sunday like this:



But he ended it like this, after a shocking loss in the opening round:



Pita Taufatofua, the Tonga flagbearer who glistened during the opening ceremony, isn't just the Games' first star, he's also a really nice guy, reportedly spending his days helping homeless kids in Brisbane, Australia.



What has been your favorite moment from the Olympics so far? Let us know below!


1 comment

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Aug 8, 2016 9:50PM EDT

Man, I need to start using your cord cutting guide to the Olympics more! I've only heard about a few of these events. Thanks for this awesome list T.J!

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