How many Super Bowls have been absolute bores? This one depleted the Stately Manor’s bin of superlatives. It was the best-est and the Squire watched the very first one when St. Vince patrolled the sidelines in overcoat and fedora 50 years ago.
Had vowed to skip it. We hate New England here at the Manor and were still smarting over the Falcons’ beat-down of the team from Small Town Wisconsin. Plus, Atlanta stole our Braves. Now we’ll remember this one as the gold (but not green) standard.
The white lab coats here at the Policy Werkes reluctantly give Tom Brady, age 39, and rumpled old Bill Belichick his due. They’ve won five of these things. We’re proud of former Badger James White; as memory served,
he was Number 2 behind Melvin Gordon on the depth chart followed Monte Ball as featured running back. (Thx readers.) Does any sport have the drama of trying to stop the other guys when they’re on your 2-yard line in sudden death overtime? (Maybe bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth with two outs in a tie game.)
Down 28-3 with the third quarter ticking down! Belichick spitting madly. Extra points bouncing off the uprights. On-side kicks failing miserably. Fumbles in the red zone and Pick 6 interceptions. The Brady-Belichick haters in the cheap seats here at the Manor were hoarse cheering. Then, it all turned — like that damnable Seattle-Packer NFC championship game two years ago when GB intercepted a Russell Wilson pass with 5:13 left In The Game, leading 19-7, and still lost!
One Facebook wag ventured that not since General Sherman had Atlanta been so thoroughly torched.
Catch of the Day
The Herb Edelman catch — sorry, Julian Edelman — will rival the Immaculate Reception in sports lore. (Is he the only bearded footballer? Baseballers today look like Old Testament patriarchs.)
The Big Game started with appropriate class. The indentured servants were nearly sobbing as George Bush I and Babs, impossibly old, were wheeled out to toss the coin. (Some unfinished business. No more mints on the pillow, Doonesbury cartoon boy. The Bushes LIVE in Houston. George H.W. Bush definitely did not put his manhood in a blind trust, as you once infamously slandered. The old man is 100 times the real man you will ever be.) Alright, I said Bush has class, I never said the Squire did.
I was worried that they’d haul the Bushes back out for the overtime coin toss; my guess is they would have been game. Then again, they may have been standing in line at the beer concession at the time.
Lady Gaga did not gag me, what I saw of it. (She’s as much of an athlete as anyone on the playing field .) But NFL football gets me worked up enough as it is. Your Humble Squire flipped over backwards on his rocking chair when Mason Crosby kicked the winning FG over the Cowboys. Let me know when the Super Bowl schedules Harry Connick Jr., tuxedoed, with a single piano player. The playlist would be Cole Porter.
Speaking of commercials, loved the return of the Easy Rider in that gorgeous Mercedes. And yeah, my H.O.G. club is skewing old. “Born to Be Wild” plays on the sound track as the camera catches a flash of Peter Fonda — enough to recognize him without dwelling on the ravages of age (And Dennis Hopper is long gone.) “Still looking good,” the nearly infirm motorcyclists proclaim.
Favorite advertisement? The unschooled field hands here at the Experimental Work Farm voted for Tide laundry detergent, that most prosaic of products. The ad agency positioned it perfectly for a sporting event by using Terry Bradshaw, a man’s man who does not take himself seriously. He gets a food stain on his white shirt and must leave Howie and the boys on the set of their Fox TV set to get it washed. (O.K., a little suspension of disbelief required.) He careens through major traffic on his stadium cart. (Look quickly: electronic traffic sign warns of Bradshaw Delays).
Passing motorists yell “You’ve got a stain.” (Reminiscent of Planes Trains and Automobiles telling John Candy “You’re going the wrong way!) Bradshaw crashes into (for unknown reasons) Jeffrey Tambor’s home laundry room. (Tambor is home alone; he is watching PBS instead of the game.) When Bradshaw gets back to the set, he hoists a super-sized bratwurst dripping with ketchup. That commercial aired early in the broadcast.
The ad agency reinforced its message with a brief follow-up. Great strategy! Viewers are returned to the Fox halftime set but this time it is Curt Menefee who spills. Tambor objects, not again!
Another good one: Honda’s talking yearbook. Tina Fey, Amy Adams, Steve Carrell, Viola Davis as their student selves come to life on the page. (Chicago Tribune votes it the #1 commercial.)
We liked the “Four years of bad hair” by a brand of hair treatment — the reference to Trump was unmistakable but also good-spirited. (Not a good sign when you don’t remember the name of the product.) And that was about as political as the night got — with the major exception of 84Lumber. (Chicks on the Right have their say.) Yeah, we get that Anheuser Busch was about immigration. Our ancestors came over at the same time from the country where they make beer in the town of Budweis. Like A-B, they came legally.
On the other side, Melissa McCarthy tweaked liberals by spectacularly failing to save the whales, the rainforest, and stop global warming. But what was she selling?
Anything with Christopher Walken. (What is “Bai?” Maybe that’s the idea?)
Least favorite: the T-mobile commercials. One of several “50 Shades of Gray” references, this one the smarmiest. Second, The Audi spot fretting about when (oh, when?) will girls be treated as equals? Cry me a freaking river, that’s so Jimmy Carter.
Blaska’s Platinum Subscriber Bonus — Speaking of hoarse cheering, No Clydesdales? One more: can the Packers please sign Atlanta cornerback Robert Alford?