SO WHAT ICONS AND ALLUSIONS, from eons of British culture, will make the cut tonight?

Given all that Olympic imagineer Danny Boyle has reportedly packed into a wild and mind-bending three-hour Opening Ceremony of a show for tonight, the better question might be: What won’t make the cut?


The Oscar-winning filmmaker of “Slumdog Millionaire” and “Trainspotting” and “127 Hours” is said to have jammed the global program at London’s Olympic Stadium with enough pop cultural touchstones of the Empire to make one think England still ruled the seas, if not the world stage.

The multimillion-dollar party to kick off London’s third modern Olympiad reportedly will reference Bond, James Bond (with star Craig, Daniel Craig) as well as the Beatles (with Sir Paul McCartney leading one huge sing-along). There will apparently be symbols of UK-cradled children’s lit both classic (Alice in Wonderland to Peter Pan, each high-flying in individual ways) and current (Harry Potter and the Stadium of Psychedelic, Torch-Bearing Dreams).

A royal highness, indeed.


(courtesy GOOGLE 2012 )

All this spectacle is a reminder that the Opening Ceremony thrives so much on visuals. Which is why it’s fitting that Google marks the sporting event on its homepage today with a Doodle of athletic diversity.

The letters in “Google” are represented by five different sports — which numerically allude to the five Olympic rings, symbolizing five continents.

Google’s logo is as playful as 2008, when a series of Doodles for the Beijing Games depicted animals participating in various sports..

Even before the Games have officially kicked off, this Olympics has been linked to interesting, sometimes controversial visuals.

Upon its unveiling, the London logo initially drew mixed reviews at best (all sorts of things could supposedly be seen in the artwork, from the mundane to the risque — like some brightly tinted Rorschach test).

And what of those quirky London Games mascots that look and move like metallic cousins to a Teletubbie? The intense reactions even extended there, as animations featuring the mascots reportedly made some Britons ill. Literally.

Higher. Stronger. Flashier.

Graphically, let the Games begin!

UPDATE: Speaking of visuals:Over at BUZZFEED, the Opening Ceremony is told through 15 GIFS.