|The Austrian duet in their bat costumes|
Perhaps you might think synchronised swimming has always been scary, with its exaggerated grins and wide eyes. You might even wonder why I'm writing about synchronised swimming - or the Olympics in general - in a horror / spooky-themed blog, especially when I don't really care about sports.
|The Russian duet mid-move|
You might not even consider synchronised swimming to be a sport (though, if that's the case, I'd like to see you train for 10 hours a day and swim upside down while making everything look effortless). Anyway, the truth is that I'd never watched this event before last week and I wouldn't be writing about it but for the fact that there were some decidedly spooky teams in the Duets Free Routine competition.
|The Russian duet at the beginning of their routine|
The Russian pair swam a doll / puppet themed routine, using music from the films Suspiria, Amelie, and Sleepy Hollow. Considering synchronised swimming evolved from "water ballet" the Suspira Theme by Goblin being used is somewhat amusing / appropriate (if you've ever seen Suspiria, you'll understand, and if you haven't seen it...why the hell not!?).
|The Brazilian duet after their "Human Body" routine|
Then there was the Brazilian duo who chose The Human Body as their theme and wore anatomical costumes, complete with brain-print swimming caps! There was also a yellow skeleton print on the back as well, just to further emphasize the theme.
|The back of the Brazillians' costumes|
The Austrians also had a spooky theme, though I'm not entirely sure what it was. Their costumes featured big bats on the front, with one of the wing-tips curving around into a wolf head on the back. There were also a few smaller bats and a full moon on the back, as well as a bat hair accessory.
|The back of the Austrian costume|
Apart from that, a large part of their swim was set to Mussorgsky's Night on Bare Mountain, which is about a witches' Sabbath, and there was also a random cackle in the middle of the routine as well. Sadly, neither Brazil nor Austria made it into the final, but Russia eventually won gold in the duet competition. Hurray for Olympic spookiness!
BBC Sport - Duet Free Routine Preliminaries (video - all screenshots taken from this video)
More screenshots after the cut below↓