The Super Bowl is more than just a football game. Some people tuned in for the showdown between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles, some came for the commercials, and others tuned in for Justin Timberlake's halftime show. What matters is that they all tuned in together.
The Super Bowl is one of the only remaining unifying events of our time. It's not about the football, or the ads, or the music, it's about the fact that for one day we all come together and share these moments. We all saw the "Solo" trailer live, and gasped together as Brandin Cook went down. We stood for P!nk's national anthem as one nation, and we teared up as Milwaukee went purple for Prince during that halftime show.
For a few hours, we became one nation, and we shared these moments together. And, because there is no family more media savvy in the public eye than the Kardashians, Kylie Jenner managed to capture a bit of that zeitgeist with her big reveal before the big game, making the first Super Bowl moment a moment that had nothing to do with the Super Bowl at all. Coincidence, or genius?
Below are the 16 moments we shared on Sunday everyone will still be talking about tomorrow.
Even before the game began, Kylie Jenner decided to break the Internet early on Sunday by revealing that she had given birth to a daughter. This was from the pregnancy that she would never confirm, instead stepping out of the public eye and hiding her baby bump. She missed the Kardashian family Christmas card, and kept people so confused and uncertain they started speculating she was Kim's surrogate. Coincidence that she chose Super Bowl Sunday to break the news, or was this Kardashian marketing genius. Don't care about the game? Care about America's First Family of Famous.
Even while battling the flu, P!nk came out and made a powerful statement with her take on the national anthem before the game. Immediately, fans on social media began recalling and comparing P!nk's performance to Whitney Houston's iconic 2004 rendition. P!nk's was an emotional and powerful performance, with almost no indication that her voice was struggling.
We saw the adorable baby dinosaur, we saw a trailer already, but the Super Bowl gave us our deepest look yet into "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom," and we are shook. We were already concerned about their mission to save the dinosaurs from a volcanic eruption, but now we learn there may be a genetically-altered dino-monster the likes of which we haven't seen yet. The real dinosaurs were terrifying enough, but this new monster is like something straight out of a little girl's nightmares. Seriously, she's right there in the trailer.
As a form of silent protest about Justin Timberlake returning to the Super Bowl, Twitter fans created and got trending #JanetJacksonAppreciationDay. Under that hashtag, they spent the day reminiscing about her influence as artist. Many are upset that Timberlake has been invited back after the 2004 "nipplegate" event, where he exposed her breast. Janet Jackson was largely blamed for that event, though both were fully involved, and while his career didn't suffer at all, some think it derailed hers. And so, they made today about showing their love and support for Janet, rather than support JT at the Super Bowl.
The post-Super Bowl slot is one of the most coveted in television, with NBC offering "This Is Us"this year. Usually, the other networks just skip this opportunity, but streaming giant Netflix decided to offer some counter-programming of their own -- and advertise it on NBC. So fans go their first look at "The Cloverfield Paradox" during the game, and if they liked what they saw, it drops on the streaming service as soon as the game ends. This is a game-changing marketing strategy for a big film franchise. Netflix continues to change the traditional methods of filmmaking and distribution. They just told TV's biggest audience they didn't have to wait to watch their next big project.
Perhaps the most anticipated teaser of the night was for the "Solo: A Star Wars Story." The big reveal that got people excited was Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, but the whole teaser captured the imagination of "Star Wars" fans. The film promises to take fans into the early days of the franchise's favorite smuggler, revealing how he got his hands on the Millennium Falcon, met Chewbacca and Lando.
Midway through the 2nd period, Patriots wide receiver Brandin Cook had a clean catch and thought he had a clear path to a touchdown. He evaded a couple of tackles, but didn't see Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins coming at all. He got hit hard in the helmet and went down, but held the ball to get the yards. Within minutes, the Patriots declared him out for the duration of the game. Was it a sign of things to come for New England?
The most unexpected pairing of the Super Bowl (twice!) brought one of the night's most entertaining commercials. Peter Dinklage pimped for Doritos while Morgan Freeman repped Mountain Dew Ice in a combined commercial that saw them lip sync for Busta Rhymes and Missy Elliot, respectively. Dinklage brought the heat while Freeman was cool as ice and the Internet could not get enough of it.
We never realized it, but apparently every ad is actually a Tide ad. If the clothes are spotless, it's a Tide ad. David Harbour made the point early on by showing all the ads he could be making only to reveal they're all Tide ads. Then, he showed up later to take over the Old Spice guy's ad because that's a Tide ad, too. "Nice pants."
Australia got people all kinds of confused in the lead-up to the Super Bowl, with what looked like teaser footage from a "Crocodile Dundee" sequel starring Danny McBride and then Chris Hemsworth. The commercial itself kept up that pretense until McBride himself finally realized it wasn't for a movie at all. Hemsworth tried to tell him he was the best Dundee since the original, but Paul Hogan echoed America with a disdainful shrug from the corner. It was a brilliantly subversive campaign that got people talking and wondering what was going on, so kudos to Australia. Ignore the haters, this was well done.
With no time left in the first half, Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles left the Pats scratching their head, and extended their lead by 10 points. Quarterback Nick Foles made himself an eligible receiver by staying out of the center during the snap and somehow no one on the Patriots saw it coming. He was wide open as he glided toward the end zone and caught a simple pass to score as the clock was running down. Even worse, Tom Brady had missed a similar pass earlier in the game.
After starting in the bowels of the stadium, Timberlake made his way to the main stage for a dance party and medley of his greatest hits. His performance moved several places around the field, including two min-stages, one with just a mic and the second with a white grand piano, where he performed a duet with a projection of Minneapolis native Prince. An aerial shot revealed the city around the stadium turning purple and ultimately revealing Prince's symbol. After that, he made his way into the stands to sing. There were no surprise guests; it was simply a live look back at JT's music career.
It became a moment that changed the life of one kid, at least momentarily, when Justin Timberlake stood next to him to sing in the stands. Timberlake allowed the kid to take a selfie with him, and the young man was on-screen for several moments as he looked at his camera and became an instant internet meme. Now, he's headed to "Good Morning, America" to talk about his big Super Bowl moment, as the selfie he took has begun to take the Internet by storm.
The New York Giants weren't in the Super Bowl, but they still managed to make an appearance there. After teasing it throughout the broadcast, Eli Manning finally erupted with the iconic dance number from "Dirty Dancing." He took the Patrick Swayze role, leaving Odell Beckham to channel Jennifer Grey. They even managed the famous lift at the climax of the piece, and there wasn't a dry eye on the practice field!
As the Patriots were looking for their big comeback drive, Tom Brady suffered his first sack of the night, and it culminated in a fumble that the Eagles picked up, setting up an Eagles victory. In a game that was dominated by offense from both teams, this one moment of defensive prowess turned out to be the deciding moment of the game, and the end of Tom Brady and the Patriots' Super Bowl LII dreams.
The most anticipated episode of the hottest show on television promised to break the hearts of everyone, no matter how they felt about the Super Bowl outcome. Since "This Is Us" fans first learned that family patriarch Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) died, they've wanted to know how it happened. Creator Dan Fogelman saved that reveal for Super Bowl Sunday. On a show that reduces its fans to tears every week, this one was guaranteed to leave them positively breathless.