Monday, February 2, 2009

Not Bowled Over... No. Bowling For Ad Dollars... Dammit, I Can't Think of a Clever Superbowl Media Reference Title That Hasn't Been Used

Folks, here's the thing: if you were expecting a review of the Superbowl ads, that ain't gonna happen. Because this year all the good stuff happened between the commercials.

First, the game itself was a barn burner. A spectacular superhuman winning play in the last seconds pretty much sums up the excitement level of the game. You may not be a Steelers fan, but you have to admit they had to fight for that Lombardi Trophy. And the review rules actually added to the drama.

But wait, there's more. The halftime show didn't suck. Springsteen and the E-Street Band played the songs that rocked the house. The national anthem wasn't an embarrassment. Nor was Faith Hill singing America. I wouldn't mind if all those performers returned to do it again next year.

NBC put their Sunday Night Football experience to work for a near flawless broadcast, at least during the game. I avoided the pre-game tripe, where I'm sure all did not go as planned all the time. The Peacock managed not to embarrass itself too much with cheesy promos for its prime time programming. Oh, they tried. The "Feelin' Alright" number teetered on the brink. At least they didn't flog Heroes quite as bad as they did the now forgotten My Own Worst Enemy during the Beijing Olympics. But it is way too obvious NBC owes its soul to Steve Carell. The hour-long Office that ran after the game started off LOL hilarious, but seemed to run out of steam by the time the overdue local news came on. Stick to the half-hour format, guys.

Speaking of something outstaying its welcome, the horse trailer "player of the game" bit has had its day, guys. I don't get it, I don't know why their putting photos on the side of a horse trailer, nobody's ever explained it to me, and I don't think anybody else gets it either, including John Madden. The horse whinny sound effect is just annoying. Just tell us somebody's the player of the game with computer graphics and let us go home.

With all this actual football content going on, there was scant little time left for watching commercials. Besides, the ad agencies seemed to be very aware that in this economy, a 3 million dollar 30-second spot had better get results. We can't afford artsy or beguiling. We need to move the merchandise. Thus, car ads looked pretty much the way car ads look any other time. Beer ads made me laugh the same way they did during the playoffs. And no amount of production values or Danica Patrick will explain to me just what the hell a GoDaddy.com is, and no I'm not logging on, as something tells me this website will infect my computer with enough adware, spyware, and scamware to send me spam until I'm in my grave, ensuring that I'll get junk emails for lower mortgages and a bigger penis well into my afterlife. No thank you.

Years from now, whenever Superbowl XLIII is mentioned, I'll be talking about the game.

And the Doritos crystal ball crotch shot. Now that's comedy.

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