If you’re my age, or close to it, you remember when you’d never go to bed on Monday night without seeing the halftime highlights on Monday Night Football. We lived to hear Cosell’s, “He. Could. Go. All. The. Way.”
This was Must See TV before the term was invented.
No ESPN in those days. No NFL Network. No Sunday Ticket. And most importantly, no saturation. It’s said the first rule of show business is to leave them wanting more. Well, if the NFL is show business, which surely it is, then they followed this rule to a tee in the ’60s and early ’70s.
Today’s coverage with Thursday night games and Sunday night games to go along with MNF and a full slate on Sunday afternoon, not to mention all sorts of cable and satellite offerings along with 24-hour sports channels showing every highlight dozens and dozens of times, runs the risk of making the games boring. The Odell Beckham Jr. catch was spectacular to see. But the hundredth time?
It’s been decades since the Monday night highlights were compelling enough for me to lose a valuable hour or two of sleep. But that changed this past Monday, and not because of football.
If you know what I’m talking about, then you know what I’m talking about.
When Monday Night Football is on ESPN, and Disney owns ESPN, and Disney owns Star Wars, then Disney gets all of us to stay up late. All they had to do was put the word out that the official trailer for the new Star Wars movie, which won’t hit theaters until Dec. 18, was going to be unveiled at halftime.
“Here it comes,” I texted my son in Chicago as the moment arrived.
“I’m ready for it,” he texted me back.
Those words were reminiscent of when he was about four years old and I thought, “He’s ready for Star Wars.” He became an instant fan.
Few things have permeated our society the way Star Wars has. Even my one-and-a-half year old great niece has “Chewy-bacca” in her working vocabulary. Of course, her dad does own a Jedi robe and she has a Princess Leia hat, complete with “cinnamon buns”.
I have a colleague who’s about 40 and when I told him Tuesday morning about texting with my 29-year-old son during the trailer premier, he said he watched it with his little boy, about 4 or 5, on his lap.
“The Force may be powerful in this one,” I said, and he knew exactly what I meant.