Super bowl XLII

No Debian content here. Just like last year I decided to watch one of the largest sport events in the USA - the final game of the National Football League Super Bowl XLII (roman numerals are different for the sake of it :P ). I came to like the Japanese take on American football, so I watched the Superbowl last year and was appalled at the lack of any entertainment value in the game. I was told that it was one the worst Super bowls ever, so I gave it another try.

Just like last year the American football looks to be very lawyer-friendly: bundles of complex rules and exceptions. The game could have been much simpler. Like for example, a lot of rues come from the fact that the game timer almost never stops. It is good for TV companies as they can plan their broadcast times better, but horrible for the stop-go game like the American football is. Just stopping the timer on every point the ball is stopped like they do in final seconds would cut out a lot of rules. Playclock and all. Rules on use of timeouts and stuff. Of course the game time would need to be adjusted down a bit. Now you have 4x15 minutes of 'game' where at most 20 minutes of that is in action. That game time is a lie - most of the time people are just standing around.

Terminology irks me quite a lot. Why is it a "1st down" when there have been two "1st down"s just a few minutes ago? Something along the lines of "down counter reset" would be much clearer. And what is cryptic "1st & 10" doing in the middle of the screen? It would have been much clearer if that info would be split: "Downs: 1/4" and a measuring arrow between the ball and the yellow line with "10yd" written on it. And then there is an obscured "two in two" or "two for two" or "two in O" phrases which apparently means the same as "two 1st downs out of two tries" in the context. Can't the commentators be a bit more elaborate and actually say the units of measurement? "Giants strength first tonight"? How about "in the lead", English anyone?

The camera placing editing is just horrible - the camera direction is switching all the time and that is confusing as hell. In normal football when professional camera teams are working, you always get all the shots from one side and even one general angle. If for clarity reasons a camera shot from other side is needed (usually in a replay) they always say that the image is from the reverse side in large letters on the screen. Here a lot of close-up shots were all over the place and even rotated around inside one shot! That might look fancy, but is just crappy camera work and editing.

Then commentators start talking walls of numbers and walls of names. Unless you know by hearth who plays at what position, there is no way to understand what those people are saying. Than is just sloppy commentary. Is FOX incompetent in all possible ways?

Then again the funky rules came into play just at the end of the first quarter - I have no idea why the ball was moved to the end line. Apparently the defender did or didn't something. Did not see anything worth penalizing the team like that at all. They dropped the term 'pass interference' later on. Isn't interfering with the pass the whole point of the defense play in this game??? Lawyer game, I'm telling you. And later on, pulling on guys arm while he is catching and being tackled apparently is just fine. And holding is illegal???

On the big penalty on the Giants the judge could have just said that the ball is out of bounds. Giving a 10yd penalty for such a minor thing is just ridiculous.

The halftime show was kind of meh. Staged to extreme, but no soul nor sense. And what were all those people doing on the field? Isn't that bad for the grass? And the commercials .. Average at best. Horrible at worst. For example a government commercial saying parents to protect their prescription medicine to .. help out your neighborhood drug dealer??? Oh and does anyone still doubt that media is controlled by republicans after that Coke commercial where the democrat is portrayed as bald and ugly and the republican is portrayed as the nice guy going for the compromise. And then they both Segway into the sunset? Brainwashing and prejudice embedded in a Coke commercial !?! WTF is going on in USA !?

The 12-man-on-the-field penalty in the 3rd quarter is another legalese bullshit in the game. It is clear that the extra player had no effect on the game so it is just ridiculous for the judge to penalize the team for that. A couple small penalties were given for Patriots as well, judge bias was not as prevalent as last year.

The camerawork stayed the same through the game - confusing, flashy and sloppy. Other cameras are in the shot line all the time. The game however did compensate for that all. The 4th quarter was very nice and exiting. I had no idea of the teams before the game, but I did like the Giants more - they just seemed to have more will and soul in their game. So I rooted for them since the 2nd quarter and it was very satisfying to see them win the game in the final seconds.

Summary: good game, great final quarter, horrible coverage and crappy sideshows (adverts and halftime show).