On February 4th from 5pm EST onwards, time stopped for four hours as Americans gathered around their televisions to watch the 52nd Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles. Although the two final teams were East Coast based this year, that did not stop the rest of America from tuning in and placing their bets on who would reign victorious.
103.4 million people to be exact watched the game, meaning 1/3 of the entire country stopped their lives to watch the big game. Surprisingly, 103.4 million viewers is a decline from last year’s ratings, which hit a cool 111.3 million. As one could imagine based off of the TV-ratings, it is also standard knowledge that a Super Bowl ticket is the hardest ticket to come by in American Sports. In fact, it is rumored to be equally difficult to only that of a UNC-Duke ticket in Cameron indoor stadium.
Other than the Fourth of July, the Super Bowl could possibly be the most quintessential “American” event of the year. Other than eating and drinking establishments, businesses shut down early and the roads empty out. Anywhere serving wings, beer or pizza can bank on having one of the their most profitable nights, and the Super Bowl actually has an entire set of menu items devoted to feeding the football lovers tuning in. Buffalo Chicken Dip, chips, guacamole, and wings are among the many foods that frequent Super Bowl viewing parties. Loving the sport of football isn’t the prerequisite for this event. Loving food, friends, music, and hilarious commercials makes one predisposed to having a great night on Super Bowl Sunday. It’s hard to find an American who doesn’t like at least one of these many appealing factors.
This year saw its own set of trends, jokes, and memes resulting from the Sunday night show. Each will come to define the year of 2018, and anyone consuming media will see references to these trends over and over again in the ensuing weeks. For example, Tom Brady showed up to the Super Bowl dressed as Inspector Gadget’s Grandmother, and the internet went insane. Twitter also likened him to a James Bond Villain, Audrey Hepburn, a character from Zoolander 5, and a ‘single white mother walking out of the courthouse having won custody of her kids.’ His outfit certainly has given a platform for the Twitter-verse to display how imaginative it is.
Justin Timberlake performed the halftime show, and we learned that Gen Z, Millennials, and baby boomers alike are a fan of the pop icon. His performance this year was much less risqué than his last stint at the Super Bowl halftime show, where he accidently exposed Janet Jackson’s nipple. In fact, the most noteworthy moment of Timberlake’s performance (and maybe even the Super Bowl) was “Selfie Kid,” who is otherwise known as 13-year old Patriots fan Ryan McKenna. The teen appeared to be on his phone distracted when Timberlake came up to perform right next to him. McKenna was apparently attempting to launch his camera app, however the internet had a field day with memes of the moment. In fact, McKenna now has a roster of interviews lined up, including ones with Good Morning America and the TODAY show.
Lastly, this year’s commercial lineup did not disappoint. Viewers saw Odell Beckham Jr. and Eli Manning re-enact scenes from the infamous Dirty Dancing. Amazon’s Alexa lost her voice, and Gordon Ramsay, Cardi B, Rebel Wilson, and Sir Anthony Hopkins found theirs. Peter Dinklage and Morgan Freeman proceeded to have a rap-sync battle on behalf of Doritos and Mountain Dew ICE, and ultimately, there was no shortage of entertainment. Amazon’s Alexa commercial went on to steal the show, and took home the top spot for Ad of the Super Bowl in the notorious USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter.
Lastly, did I mention that the Eagles beat all odds and won the game? This was their first time winning the Super Bowl, after losing to none other than the Patriots in 2004. That’s the crazy thing about the Super Bowl though- for the winning city, it defines the event. For everyone else, selfie-kid, Justin Timberlake, and the ridiculous Amazon Alexa commercial are some of the biggest takeaways. Oh, and the hangover on Monday. The Super Bowl has something for everyone, and as Americans, this is one of our greatest traditions.