Monday, February 2, 2009

Recession v. Super Bowl XLIII

For many years, the NFL Super Bowl Sunday has been an American institution in more ways than one. Will the current economic recession be its downfall?

By: Ringo Bones

More than just an end-of-season finale for the NFL, the American Super Bowl Sunday has for years been a magnet for multi-million dollar 30-second advertising slots. But the slow inexorable creep of the on-going global recession began to manifest itself in America in a dramatic way during the second half of 2008 via layoffs and stock market free-fall. Will this inevitably ruin the 2009 Super Bowl XLIII?

Big-time sports advertising in America has always been about profits and ease of moneymaking. When the crude oil tycoon J. Paul Getty started the cable-based sports channel ESPN, you can be sure that he’s not doing it for humanitarian reasons. Given that the “R” word – that is recession – has already behaving like Frankenstein’s monster set loose on an unsuspecting public, will it eventually take down one of the most hallowed American of institutions – that is the Super Bowl Sunday?

The on-going global economic downturn has finally make itself felt on American soil when a week before Super Bowl Sunday – the 2009 Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Florida. According to NBC there are still four 30-second advertising slots that remained vacant. Whereas in the past, 30-second advertising slots – despite costing millions of dollars – are snapped up by interested parties as soon as they are made available. Does the vacant advertising slots point out – especially during the Super Bowl – that America is now indeed in a deep recession?

In spite of all the doom and gloom, the hallowed institution of the American Super Bowl Sunday still managed to provide a refuge for die hard fans to forget, just for a moment at least, the on-going global economic downturn. If Americans still manage to have a good time in spite of a “relatively austere” Super Bowl – in advertising terms at least. Then, the Super Bowl, together with the die-hard fans, can safely manage to hold on for things to get better – even though it means spending more money.


Sherry Rashad said...

Super Bowl Sunday advertising in the "past" used to be a "What animal ate what animal?" kind of extravaganza. But the "recession embattled" 2009 Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Florida was - for all intents and purposes - a financial company's bonanza. I mean its all about financing / financial firms ads galore on the 43rd Super Bowl Sunday's much coveted 30 second multi-million dollar advertising slot. Like the "" advert where Ed McMahon together with MC Hammer were asking everyone to turn their "unused" gold into money (sign of a gold shortage in America?). Or what about that very controversial Bank of America Super Bowl XLIII advert? In which every taxpayer watchdog became critical over Bank of America's blatant misuse of American Taxpayer-sourced financial bailout money.

Mischa said...

Super Bowl XLIII was already dubbed as the "Recession Bowl" long before the 4 vacant 30 second advertising slots was featured on every NBC news program six days before this year's Super Bowl Sunday in Tampa, Florida.
I do agree that the Ed "over-sized check" McMahon and MC "is he still alive?" Hammer on their advert. But before you think about cashing in your "unused" gold, remember that the service is usually offering 17 cents on the dollar. Remember, there are other gold buyers out there who'll pay better.

Fayme said...

Dubbed as the "Recession Bowl" by Al Jazeera's English language affiliate, the 4 remaining 30-second advertising slots that remained unavailable six days before Super Bowl Sunday is indeed a sure sign that the 2009 Super Bowl XLIII advertising revenue - those 30 million dollar 30-second advertising slots - is not recessin proof.
I do agree that the advert which stars Ed "Star Search" McMahon and MC "You Can't Touch This" Hammer is one of the most interesting Super Bowl adverts that had come out in decades. And being a Bruce Springsteen fan, isn't it weird that his Super Bowl half-time performance harkens back to the "Glory Days" of REAGANOMICS - or is that the "Recession Days" of REAGANOMICS. We should blame the late former US President Ronald Reagan for all of our current economic ills.

Maribelle said...

Has any of you noticed the latest upcoming Star Trek movie adverts? And I do agree that the cash4gold advert is really interesting.

Vanessa said...

Gold, Star Trek movie? Are the Ferengi finally noticing the financial profit potential of Super Bowl advertising? Anyway, Super Bowl XLIII could be seen as the Super Bowl whose advertising revenue bucked the trend of recession fears.
From a Star Trek fan / Trekkie perspective, Ed McMahon and MC Hammer could be trading gold-pressed latinum in the near future if the Ferengi comes to save our economy.

Ringo said...

Thanks for noticing the upcoming movie advert of the latest Star Trek movie on Super Bowl XLIII. Sadly, the Star Trek movie is based on the original series, so Ferengi appearances are extremely unlikely. But I do agree - despite of it's relative crassness - the advert featuring Ed McMahon and MC Hammer is one of the most interesting Super Bowl adverts that have come in a long time. Whether it is worth the millions of dollars spent on Super Bowl Sunday airtime is anybody's guess.