It's definitely a strange way to celebrities for his politics. I can see why Key (and National) would distance themselves from those types of artists, sort of framing Nationals identity as heroes when Key surrounds himself with the All Blacks. Even if the All Blacks do digress or make mistakes, they're swept under the rug and their status remains, i.e. Aaron Smith's d**k pictures scandal.
Do you not think that Key uses the identity of the All Blacks as a celebrity politician? The All Blacks are seen as heroes or gods, so to speak, in NZ and their status as celebrities are a huge advantage for Key. Whether they win or not, they're status as such will most likely never change. So, in a sense they're doing Key's marketing for him.
Yet, would it be any different with any other teams? I mean, the Kiwis (Rugby League) are the number 1 team in the world at the moment. Would we be reacting the same sort of way or would we appreciate the sharing of having more of our NZ teams in the media?
I don't believe that you're being over-sensitive. I believe that the All Blacks' presence in our media and political sphere is quite frustrating. Let me further explain:
Just wanted to acknowledge your last paragraph about how the "bloke-y, matey political trend with the national side makes [you] uncomfortable."
It really makes wonder how many other people are tired of the dominance of news and political coverage the All Blacks get in New Zealand. I mean, take a look at the World Cup squad announcement at the beehive - how ridiculous? It had a dedicated TV programme and the front page of the Herald the next day!
Gender equality in sports has always been a problem, and none more so than the All Blacks presence in our media. Take a look at the Tall Ferns for example, who barely get any attention in the media and were restricted to a magazine spread for their Netball World Cup squad announcement only several months ago. Spot the difference here?
Now, I'm a male myself and yes, I avidly support the All Blacks, but I do not enjoy the commodification and "celebrification" that comes with them. Ok, yes they're are the best team in the world (arguably), but we are certainly very good at the other sports, i.e Netball, Rowing and Hockey (to and extent). Yet, their media attention is significantly inferior to that of the All Blacks.
Unfortunately, I also believe that it will most likely never change and will probably become worse if we win the World Cup this year, catch 22 I guess.