Superbowl Redux

Wes left for another business trip yesterday morning, so for the third year in a row I was left to my own devices for the Superbowl. The previous two years, I’ve caught up on the best commercials the day after. This year, I decided to take a stab at being relevant by ignoring the game itself and turning the volume back on for the commercials and halftime show.

First of all, can I just say that the Tide commercials with David Harbour killed me? Those were so funny, and if possible made me like him even more. I thought his Twitter antics were endearing, but then I saw him riding tandem on a unicorn with the Old Spice guy and my fondness intensified.

The Dodge Ram commercial with Dr. Martin Luther King’s voice imposed over it nauseated me. I was scowling so much that my son actually asked me if I was okay, and it wasn’t until he said that that I realized how much my irritation was showing on my face. For shame, Dodge. Have you learned nothing from Pepsi’s ill-fated ad from last year with the girl who’s pregnant and was on that show with a bunch of people whose names inexplicably begin with the letter K?

The Verizon first responder appreciation ad made me cry, as did the Budweiser water one. I’m a sucker, what can I say?

Many of this year’s commercials were good, in my opinion. I do, however, have to single out Diet Coke for a minute.

Last week, Wes took me out for a movie and there was a Diet Coke ad that ran with the previews. It was of Gillian Jacobs, who was fun in Community, and she gave us her unasked-for permission to drink Diet Coke or run a marathon or live in a yurt if we wanted to.

Um, thanks? And also, why is Diet Coke equating its beverage with these behaviors?

Unimpressed with this ad already, the mango Diet Coke (ewww) came on and somehow my regard for whoever is doing the advertising for Diet Coke sank even lower. In this commercial, a wan young woman takes a sip of Diet Coke Mango and starts awkwardly dancing, without music, all the while saying she’s not sure why it’s happening.

It’s awkward to watch, utterly uncompelling, and actually made me not want to drink Diet Coke ever again. I cannot, for the life of me, imagine what the pitch meeting for these commercials must have been, but I can only imagine it involved a lot of Xanax and shrugging because these commercials are the advertising equivalent of, “Meh. I guess?”

As for the halftime show, I don’t really know what to say. Lots of people have been unkind to Justin Timberlake, but I thought his dancing was quite good and the show was fine. He was operating at a disadvantage, I think, because he hasn’t been relevant as a pop musician in a long time. None of his hits are current, so he was kind of an odd choice to begin with.

I was half hoping Janet Jackson would make a surprise appearance and he would publicly apologize for his role in the ill-fated show they did years and years ago, but it didn’t happen. I also kind of hoped Andy Samberg would come out and the two of them could recreate some of their SNL Digital Short songs together. That would have been awesome.

Oh, well. All in all, the Superbowl happened. The game itself was exciting, the commercials were mostly good, and David Harbour remains charming and funny.

What was your most or least favorite moment of the game?

You Sad, Bro?

In case you’ve been living under a rock, don’t like football, think Americans are weird for calling their main sport the same name as what the rest of the world calls a different sport, or, y’know, maybe an alien, the Seahawks did not win the Super Bowl. It was a nail-bitingly close game, the final fate of which was only decided during the last painful twenty-some-odd seconds.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about what it was like to live in Seattle after the championship game. It was a rush.

Too sad even to caption properly.

Too sad even to caption properly.

What it’s been like to live in Seattle after a Super Bowl loss is not a rush. Not at all. I can’t remember ever feeling so frustrated and just plain ol’ sad as I did after I turned to Wes after the fateful last interception and asked him, “Is that it? It can’t be! That can’t be it!”

So many times during the season, the Seahawks were somehow able to turn things around when they were at their most dire and pull miraculous wins out of nowhere. It just simply would not sink in that that wouldn’t be happening this time. Surely this couldn’t be the end. Not after all this excitement?

Yet it was, and you know what? It was actually pretty cool in a way.

He's super in, like, every way.

He’s super in, like, every way.

Yes, there was definitely finger pointing, but you know what sticks out for me most? Marshawn Lynch telling reporters after the game that the reason he wasn’t mad he didn’t get to run that particular ball was that football is a team sport. Russell Wilson being back at Children’s Hospital two days after a crushing loss, all smiles and encouragement for the kids getting better there. The die-hard fans I know who, rather than turning away or renouncing the team, offered words of kindness and thanks to their team for a great season.

Monday was definitely a hard day. It was rainy and I’m pretty sure everyone in the Seattle area was just plain dejected. Wes has a friend who was so upset about the whole thing, he wouldn’t even talk about anything even tangentially related to the Super Bowl.

But it was a great season, and a lot of fun to watch. So for my part, even though I’m not terribly knowledgeable about football, I want to offer my thanks to the Seahawks for a really great season. You gave us lots to be proud of, and played the Super Bowl well start to finish. We’re all proud of you, and can’t wait to watch you do what you do so well next year.