Wednesday, June 3, 2015

"Be-Bop Bamboozled"

Lazy "Left Sharks", Hot Dog on a Stick costumery, wardrobe malfunctions? Recent Super Bowl tastelessness doesn't hold a candle to the tacky, tawdry Super Bowl half times of the 1980's. Before the NFL just hired big name talent to perform for 15 minutes, they used to stage campy productions that made "Toddlers and Tiaras" look classy and understated by comparison.

Eager to send the decade out with a bang, the NFL and Coca Cola commissioned what was billed the world's first live 3-D extravaganza- "Be-Bop Bamboozled". Viewers who purchased specially marked cartons of Coca-Cola were given 3-D glasses to view this landmark event. At halftime, the Cincinnati Bengals and San Francisco 49ers were tied 3-3; it was the lowest first half score in Super Bowl history. Viewers were watching a barn burner, but all that was paused as Bob Costas traded in his dignity to ask us to put on our ridiculous Coca-Cola glasses and watch "Be-Bop Bamboozled".

We'll totally remove this picture, Mr. Costas, if the price is right...

What followed was 15 minutes of hokey card tricks, gimmicky "effects" and blindingly fluorescent colors. It was a snapshot of the go-go '80s, bizarrely themed to the 1950's.

It's the Gary Busey/Pointer Sisters Variety Hour!

Audiences were befuddled. Did that really happen, or did we all drink ourselves into a stupor and slam our heads into the coffee table? Before we knew it, the show was over and we were left to ponder the tastelessness of it to ourselves- Twitter hadn't been invented yet so our clever wise-ass comments were NOT recorded for posterity. 

The game continued, with the amazing Cincy kicker Jim Breech becoming the de facto MVP, kicking the team to what seemed like certain victory and on the way to the congratulatory DISNEYLAND parade. Unfortunately, Cincinnati's defense checked out and its seeming curse checked in, permitting the San Francisco team to squeak ahead. Jerry Rice would be the MVP and the garish halftime show would become an almost forgotten relic.