Welp. I mean, of course wackiness was bound to ensue. Duh. It was inevitable. This! Is! New Orleans!

And of course, no matter how the aforementioned inevitable wackiness were to have manifested itself, you just knew that there would be an immediate chorus of put-upon media types wagging their fingers and screaming "Shame on NOLA!" What an absolute travesty! It's an outrage! Oh boo fuckin' hoo. The Legits are such bitches. And, as usual, their sense of entitlement and their general-purpose irritability have them looking at this thing all wrong. The blackout was without a doubt the single most awesome thing that happened during Super Bowl "Big Game" 47, and quite possibly the most fun thing that happened during whole damn two-week corporate orgy. It was a bona fide "for the ages" moment. To hell with who's "to blame." They ought to be trying to figure out who deserves the credit.

Mileage varies, of course. Perhaps as a Saints fan I'm biased, maybe I was already expecting the game itself to bore the hell out of me. I'll cop to that. But holy shit was that first half bland. The crowd in attendance seemed even more listless and only casually interested than your typical Super Bowl. The action on the field was utterly ordinary, neither particularly good nor particularly bad, certainly nothing even approaching spectacular in any sense of the word. The commercials blew. Beyoncé was… well, Beyoncé. She did what she does, nothing we haven't seen before.

And perhaps worst of all was that, after Jacoby Jones's kickoff return to start the second half, pretty much everybody on earth figured the rout was on. I suspect that there were literally millions of people who were starting to think about reaching for the remote. I know I was. And that would have been the real "disaster." After all, the Super Bowl is 10% sporting event and 90% tee vee show. The vast majority of viewers don't really have a dog in the hunt anyway, they'd already seen the halftime show, and there really wasn't a whole lot of reason left to stay tuned (or at least actively tuned in, anyway.) Only two minutes into the second half, the whole show was beginning to wind down.

And then, right on cue, just in the nick of time, shit got real weird real fast. And it was goddamned awesome.

Suddenly, the whole thing became absolutely fascinating. You couldn't have asked for a more fortuitous accident. It was precisely the injection of juice the show so desperately needed. I'm pretty sure I paid closer attention to those 35 minutes than I did all day, before or after. And I sure as hell never even thought about reaching for the remote from that point forward. I'd wager I'm not the only one.

For all the bellyaching about it what a "disaster" it was, the truth is that it was the best thing that possibly could have happened at precisely that very moment. Far better than any two-second wardrobe malfunction at halftime, or anything like that. You couldn't have scripted a better "Don't you DARE touch that dial!" moment, especially for what to that point had been such an unspectacular production by the NFL, CBS and the two teams playing.

I have to admit that after about 10 minutes or so, I was disappointed when I resigned myself to the reality that it wasn't a big WWE WCW-style angle. Surely I wasn't the only one on the edge of my seat waiting for the nWo New Orleans logo to suddenly appear on the Jumbotrons and pyrotechnics to start firing at one of the tunnels (MY GOD, KING! THAT'S SEAN PAYTON'S MUSIC!!!) and for Mr. Arrogant to leisurely strut out to the 50 yard line in a leather jacket with mic in hand, posse in tow and Beyoncé on his arm — Eric Bischoff style — and proceed to cut the world's most wicked heel promo on Roger. Screw it, I'm just gonna go ahead and pretend that actually happened.

Still, the fact is that the outage is precisely what salvaged what otherwise might very well have been the most beige Super Bowl of all time.

Nobody will ever know the extent to which the suspension of play allowed the 49ers to finally get a grip upon their shit and produce what ultimately ended up being one hell of an exciting second half of football and a to-the-wire finish, as opposed to what might have been an off-Broadway version of a 55-10 style blowout with Joe Flacco and Colin Kaepernick attempting to stand in for Joe Montana and John Elway. (Guh.)

Not that people are gonna refrain from speculating about it until the end of time, especially considering how radically the game changed afterward. It may or may not qualify as full-blown causality, but there was certainly enough of a correlation to spur endless debate about just how much of a game-changing factor it might have actually been.

And with all due respect to Ravens fans who had to have been soiling their pants and committing random acts of wanton destruction as they watched it all slipping away, to whatever extent the outage did in fact set those subsequent events into motion, I suspect that we largely disinterested observers without much of a rooting interest are thankful for it.

Thankful too that the Ravens held on for the win anyway, sparing us from what would have been an even greater controversy over whether or not Baltimore's championship had been "stolen" from them by an unfortunate circumstance. Or, worse yet, somehow stolen from them by NOLA. Oh you know damn well that narrative would have been coming with alacrity from the Legits and Message Board Guy alike. And it would have been absolutely excruciating. Just brutal. So I suppose we should be thankful to the Ravens as well for pulling it out and allowing us all to avoid that particular nightmare.

But it wasn't even about the fallout from the incident. It was about the incident itself. It was fuckin' riveting.

Suddenly, improbably, it became Must-See Tee Vee. In a way that, despite what we've all been conditioned to believe here in 21st Century 'Murica, the Super Bowl itself in any given year really isn't. Not when your favorite team isn't participating, that is. Not anymore.

Oh sure, we still pretend like we're all jacked up for "The Big Game" every year, but for most of us at this point it's mostly about the ritual. It's about getting together with friends and socializing and stuffing our faces with meats and deep-fried anything and adult beverages and whatnot. More often than not, the actual game itself is little more than set-dressing. Ambience. The theme for the evening's festivities, and that's about the extent of it. Nobody's really paying more than casual attention to what's actually happening on the field.

The irony here is that it was what suddenly wasn't happening on the field that restored what had been waning interest in the show. The stoppage of actual play is what snapped everybody back into the whole thing, right as it was about three seconds from officially crossing over into "garbage time" and viewers were starting to say things like "School night. Might want to think about cleaning the kitchen and putting the kids to bed."

Then, suddenly, all hell had broken loose. Nobody knew what the hell was going on, or what might happen next. It was insane! And incredibly entertaining. That's just sooo NOLA. And, no, we're not sorry.

The visuals were absolutely stunning, in all the most bizarre ways imaginable.

There was John Harbaugh on the sideline going full-blown apeshit on some confused old man in a suit for some reason, as suit guy made attempt after futile attempt to explain "Dude, I don't know what the fuck to tell ya." And then just when you thought Harbaugh was done… he wasn't.

There was the initial solid minute of total silence from the broadcast booth, followed by the hilariously inept attempts by the rest of CBS's crew to ad-lib their way through the process of regaining their composure. All on live tee vee, being broadcast to over seventeen thousand countries and six planets, or whatever.

The Wolf Blitzer style updates. The surreal blend of the well-established party atmosphere and the sudden tension you could cut with a knife. All the flabbergasted people milling around aimlessly without the foggiest notion of how they should proceed.

It was the damnedest thing I've ever seen.

Which is what made it so much damn fun. FUN! What a novel concept. Roger really ought to look into making that a permanent feature of future Super Bowls.

Because "the incident" made the show somewhere on the order of a hundred times more interesting than the game itself had been until that point. Talk about… um… "kicking it up a notch." BAM! Or something.

NOLA, bitches! Don't like it? Go the fuck back to Kentucky.

Meantime, to whatever extent people are disappointed and outraged on behalf of the league, CBS, the advertisers, and of course the perpetually put-upon Legitimate Media™ over this here so-called "disaster" I suggest we just go ahead and chalk it all up to residual 2012 karma. What goes around comes around and whatnot.

Wanna blame somebody? Blame Roger. And I say that with 100% sincerity. Blame Roger for the fact that, to whatever extent Super Bowl 47 was a disaster, it was a fitting end to the 2012 NFL season. The season of deliberately manufactured competitive imbalance, incompetent scab officials, the continuing pussification of the game, the increasingly arbitrary application of the goddamn rules (whatever they might be this week) and on and on like that. If last night was in any way some kind of so-called travesty, then it was well-deserved, given that the whole fuckin' 2012 season was a complete fuckin' travesty to begin with.

But deep down you know you loved that shit. All 35 crazy-ass minutes of it. The Legits can call it whatever they want. We'll just call it lagniappe.

You're welcome.

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