The Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony is in the bag – 59 of the best reactions

The Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony is in the bag – 59 of the best reactions

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics have officially begun following the opening ceremony in the Japanese capital.

The event, which took place in front of a near-empty stadium due to Covid-19 restrictions, comes amid a backdrop of controversy for the games over fears of the virus again spreading across the globe.

However, the games are going ahead – albeit behind closed doors – and the opening ceremony reflected this rather sombre mood with an understated and respectful opening celebration.

A particularly poignant and moving part of the ceremony saw a moment's silence for those who have lost their lives during the pandemic.

Another touching moment was when boxer Arisa Tsubata appeared alone in the stadium on a treadmill, despite her not taking part in the games due to her qualification event being cancelled.

The Japanese flag was also brought into the stadium by both Japanese athletes and health care workers.

It wasn’t all sadness and sorrow as there was some fun and wonder to be had during the opening ceremony, such as the wooden Olympic rings that were carved from trees planted by athletes in 1964, when the summer games were last held in Japan.

Even if not everyone was really into it...

Viewers also noticed that one performer took the knee.

Things really picked up pace during the parade of nations (even if they were in depleted numbers due to restrictions) which always raises a smile, especially due to the incredible outfits.

Also, for just the second time in history, IOC Refugee Team will compete at the games.

A very popular part of the event was the nations walking out into the stadium to themes from Japanese video games such as Final Fantasy and Super Smash Bros.

People were also delighted to see the return of the topless and oiled up Tongan flag bearer Pita Taufatofua.

However, the flag bearer from Vanuatu wasn’t going to be outshone.

As the event went on, it was a good opportunity to familiarise ourselves with the Japanese alphabet.

Meanwhile, who doesn’t love the BBC studio tables?

The Portuguese are clearly here to have a good time.

Maybe Tuvalu had the best outfit?

We can only presume this is a French gymnast doing a backflip.

The use of John Lennon’s Imagine a year after a largely ridiculed version of the song sung by celebrities went viral in 2020, was perhaps not a great choice.

Another highly impressive moment was when more than one thousand drones formed in the sky above the stadium to create a globe.

Great job from the subtitle person...

The pictogram segment where several people acted out every sport at the games was quite something to behold.

The ceremonial lighting of the cauldron with the Olympic flame was done by Japanese tennis superstar Naomi Osaka, a fitting moment for a young woman who has dealt with a lot this year.

And that’s it.


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