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Super Bowl XLVI Is the Most-Watched Broadcast in U.S. History

The annual match-up between the NFL's two best postseason teams has added a new tradition to its already well-known collection of them, which includes Most Tears Shed By Grown Men, Most Chili Consumed, and Most Time Spent on the Toilet the Following Day. For the third year in a row, the Super Bowl has become the most-watched televised broadcast in the history of American television.

According to fast data from The Nielsen Company, an average of 111.3 million people watched yesterday's Super Bowl XLVI, surpassing Super Bowl XLV's 111.0 million from 2011. (Two years ago, Super Bowl XLIV was watched by 106.5 million viewers.) Yesterday's broadcast earned a 47.0 rating across all households, beating last year's mark of 46.0.

NBC used the event to boost its singing competition show The Voice. In its Season 2 premiere, which aired immediately airing after the game, The Voice netted a whopping 37.6 million viewers and a 16.3 rating in the adult (18-49) demographic. Madonna's halftime show was also the most-watched mid-game entertainment performance of all time, so we can finally put that Black Eyed Peas travesty behind us.

This news only emphasizes what we said last week in our Super Bowl infographic: The Super Bowl is HUGE. NBC needs all the help it can get as it claws to get itself out of fourth place, but we'll see if Sunday's ratings are enough to bump it ahead of ABC.

It's too bad the game, while close, wasn't more exciting. It certainly wasn't the best football I've ever seen. The longest play of the game was a 38-yard pass, and critical drops toward the end made the game more about who could execute fundamentals rather than athletic prowess. And if Bill Belichick had just let the Giants score at the two-minute warning and not challenged that play giving Tom Brady a chance to march down the field for the win with three timeouts, I'd probably be $100 richer. Thanks a lot, Belichick. You big jerk.


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Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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Commercials/Advertisements (Ads.)/Spots weren't that good either. :(
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why so many american people watched this match?? c'mon. there are other things besides football. the players earn too much money, like the soccer players here in italy.
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All I can say is when a group named LMFAO performs with Madonna and their performance is among the most watched things in the country, more than people actually vote, it makes me sad. It makes me very sad.
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You call it football yet you can handle the ball. (rugby with padding) and call the real football soccer?

I have never understood that?
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Maybe there should be tight rules around how much kicking a game needs to qualify as football. On the other hand every code of football that I'm aware of does allow at least some ball handling.



As to your 'claim' that soccer is 'real football' I think you'll struggle to back that up with anything other than parochialism. The facts are:

- the official name of soccer is 'association football', not 'football' and thus has no claims to superiority through its name.

- Soccer has no claims to being exclusively the first football code created, as soccer and rugby (or 'rugger' if you prefer) both formed at about the same time, in the mid 18th century.

The only sport I ever call 'football' is Australian Rules Football.
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i live in the US and i'm a football fan, not really a soccer fan....and i think it's dumb we call it football. hah
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What's in a name?

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I never understood that either. Never mind that they call real football soccer (apparently they call it that some places in Britain as well), but even if a game called football didn't exist, calling the game that makes no sense whatsoever. It's really carryaroundball.
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The game was pretty good, on the other hand the SB commercials overall are getting weaker and weaker overall I was not impressed at all the only ones that I like was Little Darth Vader by far the best, and of course GODADDY the others I was totally bored
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The game was so boring the commercials on the other hand were great.
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If you think THAT game was boring and THOSE commercials were great, you should just go ahead and kill yourself already, you're too stupid to continue living.
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Isnt the football world cup the most watched still, or is this just US only in terms of records?
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It says U.S. history, so just U.S., not world
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Ah, doh, too tired
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