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Super Bowl XLIV Champions: New Orleans Saints (DVD Review)

19 Mar, 2010 By: Mike Clark

Super Bowl XLIV Champions: New Orleans Saints (DVD Review)
$24.98 DVD, $34.99 Blu-ray
Not rated.

“Is it just me?” — as David Letterman likes to say — or was everyone outside of Indianapolis or maybe a few Baltimore die-hards rooting for the Saints in the Super Bowl, which became the highest-rated broadcast in TV history? What Hurricane Katrina didn’t do for sympathy voting, the team’s 21-year wait for its first winning record and comparable historical insults did. Novelist Anne Rice even appears early on in Warner’s latest annual overview of the Bowl winner’s season. Now, there’s someone who must know a thing or two about supernatural curses.

Fortunes started to turn with the Saints’ drafting of Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush in 2006, which was also quarterback (and 2009 Super Bowl MVP) Drew Brees’ first year in New Orleans. The team’s co-opting of the “Who Dat?” chant goes back a quarter century into the dark days, and perhaps the funniest moment here comes in a regular season game when Dallas scores first and one of the Cowboys bellows, “You wanna know ‘who dat?’ We dat.”

These overviews are generally as interesting as the season was, and the Saints won their title in an interesting way: going 13-0 and then dropping three games in a row. Among the highlights are a terrific 46-34 win over the Dolphins (with 22 unanswered points in the fourth quarter) after the latter led by 21 — and a surprising tense eek-out over the Redskins (or as the audio predictably notes, “lowly Redskins”) that Washington could have won but for a missed field goal from only 23 yards out. There’s also the drama of the Saints really putting it to Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre in the intensely fought NFC Championship game. A few more hits, and Favre might have looked like former New York Giants quarterback Y.A. Tittle in that classic 1964 sports photo after the Pittsburgh Steelers turned him into a piñata.

Even beyond opening with a trailer for The Blind Side (the Warner marketers are no dummies), the disc throws in some non-football star power. The Saints-Cardinals divisional playoff game features shots of attendees Brad Pitt, Spike Lee and New Orleans native Patricia Clarkson, and, of course, the Bowl’s half-time show (graciously included as a DVD extra) featured the Who. Roger Daltrey with glasses? Well, the viewer has to adjust.

And speaking of showmanship, how about that successful onside kick the Saints executed to open the second half? You sense that the Colts wanted to call the Who back for an immediate encore of "Won’t Get Fooled Again," but the damage was done.

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