The return of Special 1 TV is amongst the best news soccer fans have received this summer. Betfair now has five episodes on their YouTube channel chronicling The Special One’s return to the Premier League, and rumors are flying around that the Internet-based company may pick up the series on a long-term basis. In honor of the greatest show in football returning, I’ve listed the ten best episodes of Special 1 TV. You owe it to yourself to catch up on these gems.
10. “Two Becomes Three”
In the aftermath of Rooney’s elbow to James McCarthy, Sir Alex calls in and explains the best way to diffuse these types of situations is with the old “What do you want me to do, electrocute the boy?” routine. José finds this works impeccably well as he uses it to calm an irate crowd left waiting to hear who the show’s new signing will be.
José’s attempt to comfort Wenger after Arsenal’s crash out of the Champions League takes an odd turn when Wenger shares his belief that his players can still progress to the final. While he notes that their elimination will be a great obstacle, he feels that creating a wormhole will make it possible to enter a parallel dimension in which Arsenal are still in the running. “All credit to quantum mechanics at the end of the day.”
8. “Act of God”
The hosts discuss The Boy Wayne’s incredible bicycle kick goal against City and The Special One reveals it was actually he that gave Wayne the idea. One of my favorite parts of this show is imagining the real life counterparts to these characters in the same situations. Mourinho singing “Bicycle Race” to Rooney in the dressing room is the stuff dreams are made of. Round it out with “Capello After the Dentist” and you’ve got a solid episode.
7. “Conspiracy at the Nou Camp”
The Premier League has now become a two-horse race between Chelsea and United. All hope is lost for Arsenal, but Wenger refuses to rule out his chances. He creates a complicated equation composed of several clubs and the corruption of the FA that proves they can still win the league. Oh, and Puppet Ronnie makes an appearance, which is always appreciated.
6. “José Phones It In”
The Special One is mysteriously absent after his weekday loss to United. Sven and The Boy Rooney continue on with the show, fielding calls from managers. They soon realize that José is faking the voices of the different managers and calling in to praise himself. What’s really impressive here is the fact that this is all done by Mario Rosenstock. The Irish impersonator is doing an impression of a Portuguese manager doing impression of French, Spanish, and Scottish managers. It’s something straight out of Inception.
5. “All In”
In one of the boldest moves ever seen by a television program, José bets the show on United defeating Barçelona in the upcoming Champions League final. Unfortunately, Barça went on to win the final and the show didn’t return until early 2013. No one could believe it was real at the time, and once confirmed, it was downright tragic. Now, though, as we stare at the possibility of more episodes, we can appreciate that The Special One is the type of guy that sticks to his word.
4. “Swine Flu”
This episode grabs the number four spot for one simple reason: it depicts José as The Doctor. Remember that time Mourinho poked Tito Vilanova in the eye? Imagine him doing that to a Dalek…in its eye stalk…with a Sonic Screwdriver.
3. “Sven is Sacked”
We’ve all been in that precarious position of explaining the offside rule to a friend. Most of us believe we understand it perfectly, but in truth, we’ll finish exploring the Universe before fully understand the intricacies of this rule. As a manager, though, you need to at least pretend you know how it works. This is Sven’s mistake, and it sets up a major storyline for the rest of the season.
Special 1 TV is best enjoyed in small doses, which is why the five-minute format of the show works so well. These minute-long webisode bites are perfect because they’re just long enough to deliver a punch line or two. I had a hard time choosing amongst them so I’ve put them all together. This is Special 1 TV at its best. Some notable entries are: “Wayne vs Wayne,” “Wayne’s Anger Management,” “A Crime!” “Callers, Hello?” “Roy on England and Other Things,” and “Ronnie and Rooney.”
1. “Special1 TV Returns”
This episode ranks number one because it has a little bit of everything. Puppet Ronnie practices his diving, José explains why he isn’t coaching a team in the World Cup (he’s a continental champion and can’t be confined to one country), and last but not least: Tom Cruise calls in. Cruise is one of the best personalities on the show and his lack of football knowledge is on incredible display here. If you want a taste of what Special1 TV is all about and you can only watch one episode, this is the one.
Now, what are you waiting for? Go tell Betfair you’d like to see more Special 1 TV. The only thing more exciting than the upcoming football season is the idea of José and his crew giving us the news every week.