Dennis Trainor Jr: Super Bowl Sunday is America's High Holy Day for advertisers. On no other day during the calendar year are more people in the United States sharing in the same common experience. Last year, 71 % of households who had a TV turned on were tuned into the big game. In an age with 9 thousand channels on your boob tube plus the endless nooks and crannies of the Internet, to produce a communal experience like the Super Bowl is a marvel. With so many people watching -- and watching the commercials, what can we learn about ourselves by what advertisers are trying to sell us, and the tactics they use to get us to identify with their brand?
To put it another way, if aliens joined us on Super Bowl Sunday, what would they learn about our culture? Well, for starters, they would lean that we like cars. Almost as much as we like the female form. Not just any female form, mind you, but the kind only a tiny fraction of actual females come by naturally- and the kind a statistically significant of others starve themselves for or undergo surgery to achieve, or both. Based on this metric, who could blame aliens if they placed the average American in 2013 at even par with the Dukes of Hazard on the evolutionary chain. Of course these aliens would also know that we like beer. And Pizza. Enough to support a Papa John Asshat who budgets to give millions of pizza's away every year and advises his franchise owners to keep his employee working less than 30 hours a week so they don't have to incur the costs of chipping in for their medical insurance under Obama care. The aliens would notice, because aliens are smart, smarter than you don't kid yourself, that since all of the ads are pointed at a straight male demographic, that our culture was a patriarchy that regards women as second-class citizens. Since the game itself is a celebration of violence and the metaphor's for wars are numerous and not masked at all, and since the game itself shortens the lives of the participants- the aliens might make the leap to view the national football league, turning -- as it does so artfully- war into a game, as having much in common with the Gladiator games of the Roman Empire. Like the Roman empire- and all empires before and after it, the aliens might surmise, correctly, that the American Empire will one day fall. But since we no longer wage wars with pickaxes and chariots, the American Empire will be the first to fall in the post-nuclear era. But have no fear, because should the American Empire fall in an apocalyptic hail of nuclear weapons, Chevy has already got a truck to sell you.
All this is not to say that I won't be watching the game. I will be, and rooting for the Niners. My name is Dennis, and I am an NFLaholic.