It should be no surprise that if you want a good barometer of where the U.S. culture is just watch the Super Bowl. Whereas the ancient Israelites fashioned a golden calf as the focal point for the pagan, Baal-centered religious system to which they repeatedly sunk, the Super Bowl is our annual homage to those things we hold dear.
No, I’m not a prude nor am I averse to celebrating sports. Besides playing and watching sports, my career is built around attracting, directing, and instructing viewers via visual creativity. And I truly didn’t care who won this game. I’ve just become increasingly underwhelmed and disgusted by our biggest sporting event which is a caricature of itself.
Did Beyonce do a good job on her performance? (Firstly, WHO CARES?!) But for those to whom it’s really important, sure, it contained the pitch-perfect carnality and excess that are the benchmarks of every other other halftime show that we’ve seen ad nauseam. It’s all been done before – and way before us. Just read Ecclesiastes and you’ll find that Solomon has been there and done that and probably with more gusto and creativity than we’ve yet devised. But what did he find at the end of the rainbow? Meaninglessness.
I don’t expect a Mensa test or a soliloquy at halftime of a football game but hasn’t bootyliciousness gotten old yet? (I knew that was a stupid question as soon as my fingers struck the keys.) Yes, banality and emptiness – that’s still what we can’t get enough of and that’s not a good sign.
And let’s just leave the rule book and the referees in the parking lot next year. The ref who got shoved by a player six feet out of the way without a whistle, penalty, fine, or suspension is an apt metaphor for what happens to the rules of the game (and our discretion at large) when “it’s the Super Bowl!” The same thunder-dome standard applied to plays in which one linesman held another for roughly twenty minutes without a call. (See traveling calls in the NBA for further examples.)
Sin never really is very creative.
Isn’t it scary that year after year, there is less outrage over the un-family-friendlyness of the half-time show. Is that numbness, resignation acceptance or compromise?