Monday, February 07, 2011

Gimme A Break !

Well that's it....another Superbowl or Super Bowl or even Superb Owl is over and what fun I had watching it last evening.

Yes there were downsides; Christina Aguilera for one and the Black Eyed Peas for another four.

Question : why can't the National Anthem singers be TOLD to sing it 'properly' and not treat the occasion as a Pop Idol audition and end up singing it like a BoyzIIMen/Mariah Carey mix ? Apart from anything else, singing it like she did yesterday drags the anthem out so that it rivals the Greek anthem...and it has 158 verses !

I hope there is no truth in the rumour that Eminem will be rapping a version of the anthem in 2012 !

I also hope CA didn't think the huge cheer in the middle was for her ! That was when the live tv footage switched to some troops watching in Afghanistan or somewhere and the stadium crowd saw them on the jumbotron screens. Sorry to burst your bubble, Christina.

I'm also not a BEP's fan but then the half time show is almost more of a visual spectacle than a musical event and without Janet agreeing to flash her bit again (well it rhymes), I found the one female BEP singer easy on the eye at least. Still, I did appreciate the time and effort that went into their set and leave it at that.

Oh yes, the game. Well I'd been invited round to watch it at the home of 2 lifelong Packers fans and so I had a wonderful time. Not quite as loud and boisterous as if I'd been watching Leeds United winning the FA Cup but then soccer is a much different game and its fans are a very different breed ! Nuff said.

I do like NFL games and know most of the rules but as with explaining cricket fielding positions to an American, I struggle to understand a few NFL ones. I'm sorry, but when a load of hefty men basically bend over and face each other from inches apart and the commentator mentions "tight ends", then I'm not sure if the channel was somehow switched while I was off getting more tasty snacks !

And what is it with all those people at pitch side ? There would be enough with all the players and coaching staff and officials but do they need to have so many media people, injured team members, friends of friends of injured team members, kids holding water bottles and oxygen masks for players coming off after 5 seconds of action and so on ? Yet again a cameraman was sent flying by a ball carrying player who was pushed off the pitch by an opposition player. Everyone concentrated on the condition of the player who, with his personal armour and crash helmet was perfectly ok. We never found out what happened to the t-shirt and shorts wearing cameraman who is presumably waking up in a Dallas hospital today wondering what the hell hit him.

I, and a few million others, can tell you buddy. It was a huge tight end ! And try explaining that to your friends at the bar !

The game itself was great, as was the result. To save our nerves, it didn't quite come down to the wire as we knew the result with a full 47 seconds or so to go. That's always a good feeling and so the celebrations began before the game clock hit zero. Lots of cheering, some smooching and a bit of hugging. Often all at the same time !

But the reason for this post and the reason behind the title are the famous Superbowl commercials. A couple of years ago when the US motor industry was on its knees, there were few tv adverts for trucks and cars. Now that the companies are overflowing with tax payers money and their own staggering profits, they were back in force with commercials during the game. Given the cost of almost $3m for a 30 second slot, a lot of companies still stayed away. With many more avenues available now for getting their products 'out there', they saw little potential return on such a financial outlay.

So we were left with a few heavyweights like Coca Cola, Bridgestone, Budweiser.....and Doritos ? There were also a LOT of commercials for upcoming blockbuster movies.

Oh and lots of car commercials. It may be another sign of the times but I saw no ads for trucks - no dramatic deep manly talk over voices telling us about the torque and pulling capacity of Ford or Chevy or GMC trucks. No, instead we got ads about cars, European type ads about cars. Clever, seductive, sometimes amusing with few facts about them. Just letting the images sink in with us.

My favourite ? Well few stood out for me really. I liked the one with the Darth Vader kid but lasting a full minute, it went on a bit too long for me and at $100,000 a SECOND, a fortune could've been saved with tighter editing. I find it kinda ironic that the kid in the costume has admitted he's never seen a Star Wars movie ! Well at 6 yrs old, why would he ?

Then there was the one with Justin Bieber and Ozzy Osbourne and that was memorable for getting Ozzy to turn up and remember his lines for a start. It was decent.

I hated every Etrade baby commercial as they're flogging a dead horse with the idea now. Hmmmm actually flogging a dead horse might be a better idea. Nooooo. Anyway, if anything, the special effects are getting worse and the baby's eyes were as fixed and dilated as mine were watching him. Very poor.

I liked the Bridgestone Beaver although again, enough already with humanising animals.

But I guess if pushed, I'd have to say that the advert that has stayed with me the most since I saw it (and isn't that the purpose of an advert after all) featured.....wait for it and I can't believe I'm typing this......Eminem. And for a change, I can even remember the product.

It was Detroit. Come visit Detroit. Leave your gun at home and visit Detroit. It's dirty and grimy and industrialised and dangerous but, it's Detroit. Come visit and stay awhile.

And during your visit, buy a Chrysler. Cause it's made in Detroit. And Detroit is in America.

Yes and before you tell me I missed the point, I know it WAS an ad for Chrysler !!

What got me hooked on the advert wasn't seeing Eminem driving a Chrysler through the streets of Detroit. It was the music. Donno if he had anything to do with the music but it was great. I loved it. Slow building. Dramatic. But not in a Christine Aguilera National Anthem way.

It was.....good.

In case you didn't see any or all of the adverts, here is a good place to look at them. There are many there that weren't shown in 'my' tv region so I've not seen those yet.

UPDATE : Initially I put numbers here for the ads I've mentioned in this blog but every time I return to that YouTube link, they have moved the order. Maybe it reflects their popularity but sorry, this means you'll have to find them yourselves !!


UPDATE 2 : That link might only work within the US which is very unusual for YouTube. Leave a comment if it doesn't work in your country please. (Not that I'll do anything about it, you understand. I'd just like to know !)


rhymeswithplague said...

It ain't the tight ends you have to watch out for, it's the wide receivers.

And it's called a field, not a pitch!

You can take the boy out of England, but you can't take England out of the boy....

I haven't watched a Superb Owl or a Superb Owl commercial in years. Go ahead, call me un-American, but I just don't care about it in spite of how much the media and the advertisers try to pump it up.

Silverback said...

Gimme a break, Bob. Another one. I class myself as mid Atlantic when it comes to language and will type sidewalk or pavement, yard or garden and yes, pitch or field as my brain commands my fingers at the time.

However chips come with fish and crisps come with a coronary and never the two shall mix...even in my defuddled brain.

And finally, you watch out for whatever you want to watch out for - I'm sticking with tight ends !

Daphne said...

Wallowing in American commercials - - it's like I'm there! Except with fewer palm trees, damn it.

Jay said...

I was SURE I'd left a comment for this one! WHERE IS IT??

Probably I just thought I did because I was talking to you on IM ... I did love the little mini Darth Vader, but of course you know which one was my favourite.


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