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Opening Ceremony

5 of Our Favorite Flagbearers From the Tokyo Olympics Opening Ceremony

Over 200 countries walked out during the Parade of Nations. Who had the best energy and outfits?

Despite the empty seats in the Olympic Stadium Friday, the Tokyo Olympics Opening Ceremony brought plenty of energy, especially by athletes excited to represent their nations on the world stage.

After a solemn moment of silence to mourn those lost in the COVID-19 pandemic, athletes flooded into the host stadium with few spectators except for world leaders.

There were artful performances, live-action Olympic sports emoji, and plenty of references to 1964, the last time Japan hosted the OIympic Games.

Representatives of more than 200 countries filed into Olympic Stadium as we heard music from iconic video games made in Japan.

To say the least, different countries brought different vibes to the event. Here are some of the highlights from nations around the world!

Argentina

Cecilia Carranza Saroli and Santiago Raul Lange, of Argentina, right, carry their country's flag during the opening ceremony in the Olympic Stadium as Team Argentina sings at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 23, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.
Patrick Semansky/AP
Cecilia Carranza Saroli and Santiago Raul Lange, of Argentina, right, carry their country's flag during the opening ceremony in the Olympic Stadium as Team Argentina sings at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 23, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.

Some delegations were calm and reserved, some were busy on their phones capturing the moment for the 'gram, and then there was Argentina.

Argentina's throng of cheering athletes brought style and energy to the stadium despite the ceremony starting just before 8 a.m. Argentina Standard Time. Give them some credit!

Tonga

Flag bearers Malia Paseka and Pita Taufatofua of Team Tonga lead their team out during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.
Hannah McKay/Getty Images
Flag bearers Malia Paseka and Pita Taufatofua of Team Tonga lead their team out during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.

This is the third-straight Olympic flagbearing appearance for Pita Taufatofua...and he's been shirtless and covered in body oil each time.

Taufatofua is a skier, canoeist and taekwondo athlete. He's scheduled to compete in the 80kg round of 16 taekwondo tournament on Tuesday.

Angola

Angola's flag bearer Natália Bernardo leads the delegation during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games opening ceremony's parade of athletes, at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on July 23, 2021. (HANNAH MCKAY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Angola's athletes were the talk of Twitter when they entered Olympic Stadium.

Especially flag bearer Natália Bernardo, who competes in handball.

Delegation from Angola takes part in the Parade of Nations at the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games at the National Stadium.
Stanislav Krasilnikov/Getty Images
Delegation from Angola takes part in the Parade of Nations at the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games at the National Stadium.

Women behind Bernardo wore black dresses with gold and red stripes. Bernardo's gold skirt glittered under the lights of the venue.

She is one of only three handball athletes to be a flagbearer, according to the International Handball Federation.

Bahrain

TOKYO, JAPAN - JULY 23: Flag bearers Husain Alsayyad (left) and Noor Yusuf Abdulla of Team Bahrain lead their team out during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

We didn't set out to be huge handball stans in this piece - but we can't help that the handball flagbearers dress up nice.

Bahrain handballer Husain Alsayyad carried the flag for the Middle Eastern nation, along with swimmer Noor Yusuf Abdulla.

Abdulla, 15, will compete in the Women's 50m Freestyle swim on July 30.

Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan's flag bearer Denis Petrashov leads the delegation during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games opening ceremony's parade of athletes, at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on July 23, 2021. (PHANNAH MCKAY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

We really need to read another book, but the Harry Potter reference is undeniable: there's a hint of Durmstrang vibes here.

NBC hosts Savannah Guthrie and Mike Tirico refrained from Potter references when the nation Kyrgyzstan entered the stadium - but were fans of the athletes' outfits.

The outfit included a traditional Kalpak hat and tops adorned with flowers and other designs.