Eh. I’m torn on this one, I guess. If you missed it, you can check it out here:
No matter what Jen Shahade and others try, chess has always been and likely always will be sort of an ‘underground’ type thing. Having said that, I’m not sure that putting Carlsen on the Stephen Colbert show and broadcasting a couple of his modeling photos is going to do chess any good.
Then there were the questions: Do the pieces talk to you?
I realize that Colbert has his thing going and he has a show to run, but that’s the best he could come up with for the world’s highest-rated chess player? I know he had to make some schtick out of the whole thing, but I think any seventh-grader could have come up with that one.
And then challenging him to rock, paper, scissors; c’mon now! I’m glad, at least, that Carlsen won. I know that a joke is a joke and that I’m likely super-sensitive when it comes to chess heroes being ridiculed on live TV, but I was truly hoping for more than a three-minute waste of time segment of the show.
Any attempt to make chess mainstream is going to immediately fall on its face, and I think that’s a good thing. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to see a bunch of flat-biller morons wearing Tapout shirts at chess events, toting pitchers of beer and blaring house music.