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The Hoddle of Coffee: Tottenham Hotspur news and links for Thursday, December 12

More Christmas

Bayern Munich v Tottenham Hotspur - UEFA Champions League - Group B - Allianz Arena Photo by John Walton/EMPICS/PA Images via Getty Images

Hi, all!

Pelé was a question on Jeopardy! last night.

Ramble of the Day

Christmas remains a very product and content heavy time of year in the Western world; while many encourage you to spend, and others encourage you to watch cruddy romantic comedies with a Christmas backdrop. It’s abundant to the point of wasteful, but it’s a holiday staple now, but there’s been a recent expansion of this pile of content in recent times: the reality competition show.

For a few years now, my younger sister have enthusiastically adopted The Great Christmas Light Fight as a casual watch over the Christmas period. You can leave it on in the background without being offended, but if you’re bored enough to pay attention, you’ll also be entertained enough to continue.

The contestants are all very enthusiastic about Christmas lights, and are willing to spend a lot of time and money for their hobby. (This is not meant to be a judgment, because that’s how hobbies work, though I do imagine their light bills must be something special.) There are a few contestants each episode, and a judge makes the rounds to judge each display on use of lights, overall design, and Christmas spirit.

Sometimes the displays are themed (on top of the Christmas theme), and sometimes they’re set to music, but they’re never usually totally boring (relatively boring is a different discussion). It’s not spectacularly trashy television, nor is it top notch, but it’s entertaining enough to tick all the boxes on a random night in front of the television. Isn’t that what most television execs are hoping for, anyway?

A new addition to the genre of Christmas reality competition show is Freeform’s Wrap Battle, which has contestants show off their skills with wrapping paper by wrapping unusually shaped objects.

It’s a fairly self explanatory model: they start with their equivalent of Top Chef’s quickfire challenge (I forgot the name) and then move on to a main challenge, and someone gets knocked out each week. I’ve seen one episode, and have been moderately impressed with the contestants, but am hoping the challenges get tougher. A bike is relatively unconventional, but so might be a pair of pants.

It’s not a terrible concept at all, but it does go to show you that people truly believe there are places to go in the genre. Over-indulgence may be in store, but that’s par for the course with Christmas, isn’t it?

tl;dr: Welcome to a new genre in Christmas sensory overload, Christmas competition reality shows.

Links of the Day

Bournemouth’s Jordan Ibe will face trial after being accused of crashing his car into a coffee shop and driving away.

FIFA is preparing to sue Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini for £1.5 million.

Napoli has hired Gennaro Gattuso to replace Carlo Ancelotti.

BT Sport will allow viewers to purchase monthly passes like Amazon and Netflix.

Today’s longer read: Pete Pattinson interviews victims of Qatar’s poor stadium working conditions as families of dead migrants fight — and struggle — for compensation for The Guardian