UPDATE: Apparently the folks over at Deadline miscounted: turns out Super Bowl 48 was in fact the highest-rated Super Bowl, ever. With 111.5 million viewers, last night’s game tops out as the most-watched TV show in U.S history.
When a game becomes as lopsided as Super Bowl 48, it should be no surprise that the ratings suffered — though that’s all relative when it comes to the biggest sporting event of the year. The Super Bowl has taken a super dive (it’s still early on the west coast: give us a break) in the ratings this year, but not so much that it didn’t still end up as one of the most viewed games ever broadcast. So, really, FOX isn’t hurting too badly on this one, even if the Seattle Seahawk’s first-ever Super Bowl victory was the most unevenly scored game in over twenty years.
Not since 1993 has a match produced such an uneven points spread — when the Dallas Cowboys beat the Buffalo Bills 52 to 17 — this year the Seahawks took down the Denver Broncos in a match-up that produced a 43 – 8 outcome (ouch, Peyton): likely causing viewership to dip in the second half of the game. According to Deadline, the game was down 13% in viewership totals from last year’s game on CBS.
But it’s all far from bad, when you put it into perspective. The preliminary numbers are showing that in terms of viewership, last night’s Super Bowl was watched by approximately 96.88 million folks — hardly a number to scoff at — which put the viewership under 1000 million in years. This, in turn, makes Super Bowl 48 the lowest-rated year since 2010 when the New Orleans Saints beat out the Indianapolis Colts. The numbers probably sting just a wee bit, though, considering last year’s game was biggest Super Bowl event, ever, when the athletic tête-à-tête between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49s pulled in and average of 108.69 million viewers.
This year’s festivities were not all about the football, however. The night saw Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers take the halftime stage, in addition to an opening performance of the National Anthem from opera singer Renée Fleming, as well as a Queen Latifah rendition of “America The Beautiful.” Additionally, this year’s commercial/advertising push was one of its most impressive, with commercials getting their own teaser commercials in preparation for the big day. Particular advertising highlights from the night include an ode to the 1980s crafted by Radio Shack and a reunion of Seinfeldian proportions in the name of publicizing Jerry Seinfeld’s Crackle.com series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.
Of course, the biggest star of the night: Joe Namath’s fur pimp coat.