Super Bowl Sunday means something different to everyone. For example, there are some who head up to the local pub with a group of friends and watch the game on high-definition television. There are others who set up their home as an “open house” and invite loved ones over for a piece of hero and some hot wings. There are those who are unaffected by the final football game of the season and go about their business. Still others watch the Super Bowl for the commercials.
I’m one of those people who fall into the last category. My husband and I watch the Super Bowl every year, but we rarely get into it unless the G-men are one of the final two teams to play for a trophy and a dazzling ring. Every year, we eagerly await the breaks between plays for 30 seconds or so of advertisements that feature either hilarity or thought-provoking content.
This year’s offerings included Jason Momoa’s getting “comfortable,” which included scenes of him ripping off his muscular arms and well-developed chest. When he ripped off his hair, I told my husband that I can never not see Jason as a balding, thin slide guitar player ever again. We had a quick giggle about how it reminded us of the Spongebob SquarePants episode, “Anchor Arms,” where Spongebob attempts to look buff by wearing a set of blow-up arms that make him look ripped. As Jason ripped off his “arms,” Hubby made a noise that sounded like a quickly deflating tire. I choked on my pasta, I laughed so hard.
A seasonal favorite featured Bill Murray, a bright orange Jeep and the apropos groundhog from the movie, Groundhog Day. I got a kick out of how the commercial mimicked the movie, right down to Ned Ryerson’s character. Cobie Smulders of Stumptown saved the world in a Toyota Highlander, while her “son” chided her for doing it “again.” MC Hammer and Cheetos Popcorn allowed the featured actor to get out of every situation with orange cheese-dust fingers and the tag line, “Can’t Touch This.” Cartoon personalities Rick, Morty and Summer from Rick and Morty played out a mini-episode of robotic take-over in a commercial for Pringles. And then there was that Google commercial that made me mad ugly cry by the end of it. My all-time favorite, however, was Audi’s offering. Audi featured Maisie Williams driving an e-tron as she belted, “Let It Go” from the movie Frozen.
The half-time show, which has always been controversial, was no different this year. Please don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the music of both J-Lo and Shakira. I just didn’t think it was appropriate to pole dance and crotch grab, especially when young viewers might be watching. While children in brightly lit “cages” sent a strong political message, it was disturbing, nonetheless. The music was upbeat and lively, the dancers were amazing and JLo’s adorable daughter Emme stole the show. The girl’s got pipes. However, her mama and gal-pal Shakira are “not ready for prime time” players.
Another part of Super Bowl Sunday that many people might not be aware of is the “Souper Bowl of Caring,” or “Soup-er Bowl Sunday.” This charity event, which began back in 1990 in South Carolina, enables the youth of America to fight hunger and poverty in their local communities. In the weeks leading up to and after Super Bowl Sunday, young people collect money and food donations from the community and their church. One hundred percent of the proceeds is given right to whatever local charity the group or church chooses. In 2019, the Souper Bowl of Caring had over 4,500 groups who collected more than $9 million in contributions and food donations. It was advocated by both former Presidents George HW Bush and Jimmy Carter and their wives. It’s a great way to help, with an easy-to-remember name. Information about this movement can be found at www.souperbowl.org or www.endhunger.org/souper.
Whether you celebrated with a big hero or a donation or lots of snacks, Super Bowl Sunday is an enjoyable part of the American fabric that’s enjoyed by millions. How did you celebrate the day? I would love to hear from you. A hearty congratulations to the Kansas City Chiefs on their Super Bowl LIV win.
Patty Servidio is an Anton Media Group columnist.