Talk around the water cooler the day after the Super Bowl was not only the game but also those entertaining TV commercials.
Everyone has their favorites: One that got a lot of votes was the ad with the little kid telling his mom’s date to first keep his hands off his mother and second not to touch his Doritos.
One that also got a lot of kudos was the Betty White as a football player in the Snickers commercial —- which also featured Abe Vigoda. Who knew Abe was still with us —- he’s like the Stones’ Keith Richards, creepy enough to look like a corpse but defying the Grim Reaper at every turn.
Not surprisingly, most of the ads insulted men —- in fact, there was a running theme throughout the spots that seemed to question manhood itself. Men were also featured being outsmarted by not only kids, but dogs, too.
The worst ad in the male bashing category was for the Dodge Challenger, which featured a voice-over of some guy reciting all the P-whipped things we have to do to live up to our women’s standards (leaving the toilet seat down was naturally mentioned.)
This eventually lead to the product, the guy getting behind the wheel of a Dodge Challenger and the TV spot’s kicker line, something to do with the car being Man’s Last Stand. Which begs the question, how long before Dodge has to do a commercial featuring a woman taking over the wheel of the Challenger and answering something like: Woman’s Next Stand.
Paging Danica Patrick.
Speaking of the hot race car driver, the wussy powers-that-be at CBS thought her Go Daddy ads were too, well, racey, for primetime TV.
Sure, nix an ad with a hot babe who is also good in sports on a televised event that’s mostly watched by men.
But go ahead and show ads with guys in underwear, or more than a few ads with cartoon-like violence against men (seriously, is there no end to some guy getting punched, hit or kicked in the junk getting laughs?)
If you don’t think that those ads are insulting or sexist, have the sponsors re-do the same commercials with women cast in those roles. The ads would be pulled before they were over.
(Sidebar: The following is an example of perfect timing when it comes to releasing a movie. The sappy, romantic chick flick “Dear John” knocked the mega-hit “Avatar” off the top spot at the box office over the weekend. The flick gave women who don’t watch the Super Bowl an alternative — so they lined up in droves. Women —- and the poor guys who they dragged along to see the flick. It was the price some guys had to pay so their gals would “allow” them to go to a Super Bowl pary. Or at least be “allowed” to keep control of the remote. Maybe some of those same guys ought to look into buying a Dodge Challenger.)
The one Super Bowl TV ad that people talked about for days after was the Letterman-Oprah-Leno spot.
It worked well, leaving many to wonder why Letterman, whose network was carrying the Super Bowl, would appear to be promoting Leno’s return to the “Tonight Show” in March.
Talk about someone secure in his celebrity. And it’s not like people aren’t aware that the two will be competing against one another again.
Leno agreed to do the spot, even though it was Letterman’s idea and that he got the last word in by mimicking his late night rival.
Of course it didn’t hurt —- and never does — to have Oprah in on the joke. The Goddess of Gab, sitting on the couch in the middle of the two merry pranksters, is the perfect referee to officiate any ongoing celebrity feud.
More proof of how big the Super Bowl has become to the American experience. Everyone who is anyone — or wants to be a someone —- comes together to be associated with it in one way or the other. Unlike a cheap hit in the game itself, it never hurts.
Tuesday was Leno’s last show in the 10 p.m. time slot. The idea of Leno hosting a show Monday through Fridays in primetime has the dubious honor of being one of the biggest disasters ever in TV. If you don’t count Glenn Beck.
Leno leaves for late night with a dark cloud over his head, having been painted as the villain in the after hours talk show that forced Conan O’Brien out of his job. So naturally Jay was OK with the Super Bowl spot —- anything that will make him look like he can dish it out and can take it couldn’t hurt.
(Sidebar II: Things Leno did on his last night in primetime but were dropped from the telecast)
1. 10 questions with the 10 people who actually watched his show.
2. Give away all of his classic cars to every member of the audience.
3. Jaywalking: Asked dumb Californians “Who’s the celebrity who tanked with a 10 p.m. show five nights a week?” Some of the answers: Katie Cowlick, Regeant Philburn, Harry King, and Tyra Blanks.
4. Read ironic wedding couples headlines, like: “The Jay-Dunne wedding; The Dumppe-Jaye wedding; the Jay-Fiasco wedding; the Kissov-Jay wedding; and, finally, the Weiner-Tickler wedding!”
5. Took half hour of the show to list the names of the butts he still has to kiss.
If the late nighters and Oprah won raves for the commercials, CBS gets a thumbs down for the ever-present promotion of the show “Undercover Boss” that was set to premiere after the big game. The logo was even superimposed on the screen during the post-game celebration.
But there was no flag on the play as far as the officiating —- the refs let the two teams play, with only a few penalties being called. Colts fanatics could argue that the refs should’ve thrown a flag on a Saints player for blocking Colts QB Peyton Manning in the back during that return of an interception for a TD that he tossed.
Speaking of Manning, will he lose all those commercial endorsements now that he lost the Super Bowl?
Brett Favre lost the NFC championship game and he got a Super Bowl ad (pretty good one, too, Favre with the 2020 Super Bowl MVP trophy talking to reporters about winning the game now that he’s 50 he hasn’t decided whether to retire.)
There’s no “Hey, Peyton Manning, you just lost the Super Bowl, what are you going to do now?” plug for Disneyland or Disney World immediately follow the big game.
Here’s an idea of how the losing QB might answer the “Whattaya gonna do now?” question:
1. “I’m going to Detroit!”
2. “In charge of scribbling crib notes on Palin’s palms.”
3. “In charge of booking Herman’s Hermits for next year’s Super Bowl halftime.”
4. “Obama’s P.R. guy at Tea Party conventions.”
5. “John Edwards’ videographer.”
6. “Pitchman for the Prius.”
7. “James Cameron’s link to humility.”
8. “Dick Cheney’s sensitivity trainer.”
9. “Fox News fact checker.”
10. “Two words: Limbaugh’s bitch.”
(Final sidebar on Super Bowl 44: At least this time a Bush did something for New Orleans.)