Article by: Akshay Sharathchandra
Photographs compiled by: Yoonhee Tian
Can you imagine over 115 million people watching you? Well that’s the kind of pressure that each player in the Super Bowl has to deal with. For those who aren’t familiar, the Super Bowl is the name of the championship game of the National Football League (NFL). Each year, a different major network in the United States gains broadcasting rights to the Super Bowl; (the) National Broadcasting Company (NBC) took the responsibility for this year.
This year’s Super Bowl XLIX saw the Seattle Seahawks face off against the New England Patriots on the first of February, 2015. The Patriots ended up winning to the Seahawks by 4 points, only scored within the final seconds of the game. Football fans all over the world were stunned, expecting the Seahawks to win the game. When asked about her opinion on the game and the NFL, Sophomore Shin Yee Tan bluntly said that she “Doesn’t care” (about it). She further went on to explain how that she doesn’t follow too many sporting events, especially those not heavily played in the Philippines; that is, American Football.
But the Superbowl is so much more that just a sports game.
Throughout the years, the Super Bowl has grown into more and more of an American tradition, resulting in this year’s super bowl becoming the most watched television broadcast of US television history, with an average of 114.5 million viewers. This viewership just beat out the previous record that was set by the Fox-broadcast Super Bowl XLVIII from this time last year.
A major highlight of the Super Bowl among football fans and non-football fans alike, are the commercials. This year, NBC set a hefty price tag of $4.5 million for every 30-second commercial to be broadcast. Skittles, Mercedes-Benz, Doritos and Budweiser were just some of the companies who broadcast some of the funniest and interesting commercials of the past year. In addition, some of the most anticipated movies of the year including “50 Shades of Gray” and “Jurassic World” aired trailers during the event.
Since awards season begins as the new year begins, it is only appropriate to have the biggest U.S. performance of the year in the midst. A record-setting 118 million Americans tuned in for the 15-minute halftime show, this year featuring Katy Perry with special guests Missy Elliot and Lenny Kravitz. Right after the performance, the internet erupted with memes and obsessions, ranging from ‘left shark’ to tweets wondering ‘who Missy Elliot is’. Sophomore Mahrukh Niazi similarly claims interest in the spectacle of the event, but isn’t a follower of the sports side of the event. “I’ve never really watched the super bowl and I’m not a big American Football fan, so I’m not that interested”, she states.
Without a doubt, it’s clear that the Super Bowl has a massive influence on the American public, and aims to branch out to multiple demographics; but it is not as much of an influence in ISM. Although some American students still follow the NFL teams and standings, it’s obviously not very convenient (for us) to watch the game live, as that would require watching during the first classes on Monday morning. With the game keeping sports lovers entertained, the halftime show keeping music lovers entertained, and the commercials appealing to everyone in between, the Super Bowl as a whole is a great event for the entire family, and goes to symbolize the melting pot that is ISM.