It was the Superbowl on Sunday. You’ll probably know what that is, but if not then you really won’t care. It’s pretty much the biggest sporting event in the American calendar. The main things that you need to know about it, at least as far as I can tell, are:
– It takes about 40 minutes to play each 15 minute quarter of play. Not surprisingly, there are four quarters, so what should take an hour to do actually takes around two and a half hours, plus a few other interruptions, so you’re never quite sure exactly how long it will last. If you’ve ever struggled to understand the Whovian concept of “wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff” then just watch a Superbowl game and you will know exactly what it means.
– The game is secondary to the adverts (not just my opinion; I’ve heard a lot of Americans say this too). As the Superbowl is one of the most watched TV programmes, advertisers pay millions for the commercial slots, and as a result you get some of the best adverts you will see all year. It’s worth checking out the Budweiser Clydesdales one and also the Doritos Goat if you can. The adverts are shown roughly every couple of minutes (and play stops for this every time) but strangely during the half hour power cut no adverts were shown and instead we were treated to the commentators droning on and on.
– The half time entertainment is also one of the major highlights, this year being a show by Beyonce. What I mainly learned from this is that, whilst a 15 minute medley of Single Ladies/Independent Women (I preferred the Elbow version)/Crazy In Love is fine, I could not sit through a whole Beyonce concert. So, if you were thinking of getting me a ticket for the world tour, I wouldn’t bother.
I have to say, I did enjoy it as a kind of special event, I think largely because I knew I didn’t have to get up for work in the morning or watch it again for another year (although these points still didn’t stop me shouting “for the love of God, GET ON WITH IT!!!” as they took 15 minutes to play the last minute and a half of actual time). If you go into it knowing that it bears absolutely no relation or comparison to rugby whatsoever then it’s not bad – rather like a cup of Mellow Birds can be a quite enjoyable hot drink if you don’t actually want coffee. Otherwise you can spend the whole match grumbling. Although that is strangely quite satisfying. There were a couple of exciting moments, like when Jacoby Jones managed a 108 yard touchdown (he ran pretty much the entire length of the pitch without being tackled) but in no universe will that ever compare to a Shane Williams try at the Millennium Stadium.
Roll on next year’s Superbowl!!!