Patriots' Victory Overshadows Super Bowl Commercials, Lady Gaga

Feb 6, 2017
Originally published on February 6, 2017 8:53 am
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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Did you watch the Super Bowl?

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Yeah, come on. You know my need for sleep far outweighed my desire to cheer against the Patriots.

GREENE: I like that.

MARTIN: (Laughter).

GREENE: Oh, my God. That's not very objective, is it?

MARTIN: No.

GREENE: Some things are more important than sleep. All right, New England won in overtime. It was an amazing game. And the football, this time, definitely outshined the commercials and also the halftime show.

Now, many people were hoping for some kind of political statement there from Lady Gaga. That did not happen. Here's NPR TV critic Eric Deggans.

(SOUNDBITE OF 2017 SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW)

LADY GAGA: (Singing) God bless America...

ERIC DEGGANS, BYLINE: True to her words days before, Lady Gaga avoided overt politics in her halftime Super Bowl show Sunday. Instead, she began with a unifying message of patriotism, singing snippets of the songs "This Land Is Your Land" and "God Bless America"

(SOUNDBITE OF 2017 SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW)

LADY GAGA: (Singing) This land is your land. This land is my land. This land was made for you and me.

DEGGANS: As Gaga descended from above the roof of NRG Stadium to deliver energetic versions of hits like "Poker Face," "Telephone" and "Born This Way," she invited everyone to join the party.

(SOUNDBITE OF 2017 SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW)

LADY GAGA: America, we're here to make you feel good. Do you want to feel good with us?

DEGGANS: Three performers from the Broadway hit "Hamilton" got a tiny bit political while singing "America The Beautiful" before the game - tweaking one of the lines to provide some gender equality.

(SOUNDBITE OF 2017 SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW)

PHILLIPA SOO, RENEE ELISE GOLDSBERRY AND JASMINE CEPHAS JONES: (Singing) And crown thy good with brotherhood and sisterhood.

DEGGANS: Among the game's commercials, there were fewer surprises. The bulk of the most interesting spots were revealed online long before game day. Actor Adam Driver appeared for Snickers in the Super Bowl's first live ad - playing an actor walking onto a western set who doesn't realize the commercial's already started.

(SOUNDBITE OF SNICKERS AD)

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: We're live.

ADAM DRIVER: No, no, no - third quarter.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: This is the third quarter.

(SOUNDBITE OF GUN SHOT)

DEGGANS: He then accidentally knocks over the whole set. The ad kind of fell flat.

One commercial was a little more serious. 84 Lumber was told by Fox to clip the end of its ad, which seemed to show Spanish-speaking immigrants reaching a border wall. The company's website was swamped Sunday as people tried to see the unedited version there.

But this year, no commercials seemed to match the impact of the action on the field, which is kind of how it should be.

I'm Eric Deggans. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.