It’s Australian football’s night of nights. It’s where a champion is crowned as the best and fairest player of the home and away season past and, increasingly, it’s about the fashion.

But merit where it is deserved, Carlton captain Chris Judd polled 30 votes to claim his second Brownlow Medal, his first with the West Coast Eagles in 2004. He is the fourth player to win two Brownlows at two different clubs and joins a host of legends as a dual winner.

He is a superb footballer.

So let’s break the night down:

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The Good:

  • Chris Judd, obviously. A champion and a modern day legend. And Carlton’s first Brownlow winner since Greg Williams in 1994. He’s what the modern game is about: speed, skill and an appetite for the contest. A truly deserved winner. Polling five straight best on grounds exemplifies his impact on a game and the manner in which he is perceived.
  • The food.*
  • The ladies. Without the eye candy the Brownlow Medal would be like waiting for your number to be called at a kebab store on a Friday night. A room full of pissed idiots and it takes way too long. You can find the best galleries here, here, here, here, here and here.
  • The absence of a pissed Brendan Fevola.
  • Jim Stynes. It’s hard not to love this man.

The Bad:

  • Andrew Demetriou’s’ “sense of theatre” but going the “D …………………………………………………………………. Swan”. Andrew, nail the pronunciation and the delivery before adding comic timing.
  • Chris Judd polling 2 votes against Fremantle in Round 13. Fremantle won and Adam McPhee did a pretty good job at curbing Judd’s influence. Fremantle only won by 9 points but they smashed them for three quarters before Carlton fought back in the last quarter. Hard to believe there wasn’t three Fremantle players ahead of Judd that day. (Disclosure: I follow Fremantle and I was there that day).
  • Demetriou’s speed reading. Woah.
  • The food.*
  • The absence of a pissed Brendan Fevola.
  • Collingwood President Eddie McGuire’s face when Dane Swan didn’t get three votes in Round 20 (with thanks to Big Footy and Bulldog1954):

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The Ugly:

  • The bloke who sang ACDC’s It’s a Long Way To The Top to launch the night. Did the main act cancel? It was like watching a bad cover band play on a Friday night, sans band. But with added “guitarist” who looked like he was playing Guitar Hero on the Wii.
  • Channel Ten’s Coverage I: Too much filler crap. I know the 1970 Grand Final was awesome, but that was way too much introspective analysis — although I do love Syd Jackson. Please don’t do this again Ten. Next year will we have an in depth look at the 90th anniversary of Richmond’s 1921 victory over Carlton in the electrifying match in which a total of nine goals were scored?
  • Channel Ten’s Coverage 2: That god awful advertorial with Sportsbet that ran in every second ad break. You should be ashamed Andrew Maher. And you should hang your head in shame Channel Ten. And is that what Matt Campbell is doing now? From Sports Tonight to Sportsbet. The gap between sport and gambling is getting murkier.
  • Poor Dane Swan I: What was with getting Gary Ablett Jr and Dane Swan up at he start of the presentation and do a walk of shame?
  • Poor Dane Swan II: So the media talk up a bloke so much that even someone from Kentucky would think he had the Charlie in the bag and he doesn’t win so … cue gratuitous disappointment shots please Camera 7. He’s got bigger fish to fry does Swanny.

*I was not actually at the event so can neither confirm nor deny that the food was either good or bad.

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