A response to Puppy Bowl VI

Adam Rubin | Cadenza Reporter

Animal Planet’s “Puppy Bowl VI” on Discovery Channel (David S. Holloway | Getty Images)

Animal Planet’s “Puppy Bowl VI” on Discovery Channel (David S. Holloway | Getty Images)

Comprehensive studies show that women, an impressive 51 percent of the population, don’t care about football. Yet another in-depth analysis shows that all women love puppies. With this information in mind, Animal Planet concocted a crazy idea. On Super Bowl Sunday, they would air the “Puppy Bowl,” a bunch of adorable puppies running around in a miniature football stadium to lure females to get their unsuspecting boyfriends and husbands to change the channel.

In order to obtain enough solitary view time for a proper review, I opted to skip the Super Bowl this year. I had no desire to watch the Not-Jets play against the NotJets. In addition, why would I have a desire to watch expensive commercials? I don’t want to buy your garbage. Get off my lawn!

I began my viewing experience in a state of wonderment at the majesty of the arena. Surrounding the small Astroturf field was a 4-foot-tall, well-lit, multi-tiered stadium, but every seat was filled with a crappy, stationary, construction-paper cutout of a vaguely humanoid figure. The producers filled the speakers with stock audio of cheering crowds apparently thinking I was too stupid to realize that construction paper can’t cheer. The applause continued as an announcer welcomed the puppies one by one into the stadium. With their entry, the cheerleader rabbits “voiced their support,” which actually meant they sat and looked adorable next to a pom-pom.

Animal Planet’s “Kitty Half-time Show” during “Puppy Bowl VI” on Discovery Channel. (David S. Holloway | Getty Images)

Animal Planet’s “Kitty Half-time Show” during “Puppy Bowl VI” on Discovery Channel. (David S. Holloway | Getty Images)

Introductions had an interesting fact about each puppy. I was further disappointed when it was revealed that Bandit is apparently “ambi-paw-dexterous.” That didn’t make any sense. “Ambi” means “both” and “dexter” means “right hand.” Ambidextrous means “to have two right hands.” Throwing the word “paw” right in the middle bastardized the beauty of the Latin language and filled me with rage.

A live human in referee garb then entered the field to start the game. This instantly dashed my hopes of having a referee action figure pretending the puppies were of Clifford-sized proportions. I feel it is important to point out the appearance of this gentleman. Imagine your portliest aunt. Now picture her talking about how proud she is of her nephew Jeffrey: “He was on the TV last night”; “His father helped him get a great position in the company”; “If he shaved that beard, he’d have a girlfriend by now with that slim 26-year-old physique of his.”  Jeffrey was our referee.

He lacked the finesse and charisma needed of a proper Puppy Bowl official. I have never been so bored watching a referee pick up an adorable puppy for absolutely no reason at the 30-yard line and proclaim, “Puppy Touchdown.” You may notice that there is no exclamation point in that quote. I’d have thought someone would be excited. I was wrong. The most initiative he showed was when one puppy was gnawing on another puppy’s tail. He threw a yellow flag for “Puppy Foul: Unnecessary Ruff-Ruff-Roughness.” I cringed so hard that my shoulder smashed into my face. I assume the penalty was declined, as no yardage was awarded to the transgressed party.

Every time the Puppy Bowl returned from commercials, new puppies and toys were placed on the field, leaving me confused as to why the starting lineup was introduced at all. As the puppies ran around playing with one another, commentators attempted to relate every action on the field to football.

“Yums with a fantastic spinning tackle.”

“Max decides to stay hydrated on the sideline.”

Even though the showing was not live, the comments were strained and nonsensical, nonetheless. “Socks blitzes down the field!” You don’t blitz down the field, you nitwits! You blitz the quarterback. Apparently I am the only one who cares about the rules.

I felt the highlight of the game was the “Kitty Half-time Show.” A giant, multi-layered platform was rolled onto the middle of the field covered in kittens and kitty toys. Catnip spinners and football-colored mice were prevalent. I was amused at how quickly the kittens had become bored with the flying cameras and mock stadium. The flashing magenta lights, flying stars and rave music at least allowed me to pretend I was having an acid trip.

I would recommend that everyone watch future Puppy Bowls in strict moderation. I quickly experienced cuteness overload and now have trouble finding puppies adorable. One can only say “Awww!” for so long. On the bright side, I am glad that I didn’t sell myself out to the subpar Super Bowl commercials, though I do have a sudden hankering for Pedigree Puppy Chow. In the end, the Puppy Bowl had some bark but didn’t deliver on the bite.

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