Like it or not, commercials have become ingrained as a part of Super Bowl culture as vaunted as the game itself. Much like Sunday night’s embarrassing blowout, most of the advertising content on tap was a disappointment.
Even so, every Super Bowl has its moments, and there were plenty of commercials that will resonate with the viewing public for years to come. Let’s take a look at the most hilarious, confusing and controversial moments that was thrown at us, courtesy of corporate America.
There was a heavy dose of pro-American sentiment in the Super Bowl. In other insightful news, the sky is blue and you need oxygen to survive. Budweiser kept it simple and killed it with two different ads, one involving puppies and their patented clydesdales and the other a hero’s welcome for a small town soldier returning home from war. Budweiser realized it’s hard to go wrong with puppies and veterans, and did well in keeping things simple.
Later on we got Bob Dylan dropping the classic quote “Is there anything more American than America?”. At that point, everyone’s ‘Murica senses weren’t just tingling, they were exploding with thoughts of apple pie, fireworks and family picnics.
There was one instance where the whole patriotic pride concept fell flat on its face. Coca-Cola unleashed a minute-long spot in which “America the Beautiful” was performed in a variety of languages while showcasing citizens of various creeds and distinctions. The message; isn’t it wonderful that Americans that come across the world function together in one huge melting pot? Apparently not, since the ad has been blasted ever since. Honestly, the criticism shows why the US of A isn’t always as idealistic as Bud and Chrysler would lead you to believe.
Checking in on the perennial movers and shakers in Super Bowl entertainment, Go Daddy unleashed this body builder spot that really wasn’t worth revealing at all. It’s not just that the content didn’t pertain to the product, or the content itself made viewers uncomfortable. For the copious amount of greenbacks the company undoubtedly rolled into production, the ad was about as interesting as a two hour call to their tech support team. Better luck next year.
It was a quiet year for Doritos as well. They purchased three slots for winners of their commercial contest, and none of the three caught the eye. The time machine commercial was probably the best of the trio, but I’m not even going to link it because it’s not even close to a must-watch and you know where the YouTube search bar is, so take a minute to find it yourself if it’s really burning a hole in your heart.
Bruce Willis spoke on behalf of Honda and opened with the seemingly-safe cliche “Great game, right?” The Seahawks won by more than 30 points and the score was 22-0 at the half. To employ a baseball euphemism, swing and a miss.
Most people seemed to like the Audi doberhuahua concept, but frankly this was the most overrated commercial of the night. Wait, you mean to tell me I can watch a full minute of a chihuahua with the giant head of a doberman and not fall to the floor laughing? No doubt. This spot qualifies to me as idiot-bait, the equivalent of Two and a Half Men in commercialized form. And if that’s what Audi knew would happen, I’m not here to judge.
People also loved the Tim Tebow’s appearance on behalf of T-Mobile, and this time rightfully so. Tebow’s lack of a professional contract and T-Mobile’s new no contract policy were a match made in advertising heaven, and with an amusing array of stunts and decent acting by America’s favorite free agent, the concept resonated with viewers.
Hats off to Cheerios, who featured the return of the mixed-race family that received so much flak purely because people were uncomfortable with a caucasian woman being romantically involved with an African-American man. As an ultimate middle finger to the dissenters, the commercial revealed that the clan is expanding, adding another child and a puppy to the mix. Talk about doing right during Black History Month. I gained a new respect for Cheerios after that night, and I hope others felt the same way.
Stephen cracked open his head on behalf of Wonderful Pistachios, which was kind of amusing.
Bud Light gave an unsuspecting man named Ian Rappaport the night of a lifetime, including ping-pong with Arnold Schwarzenegger and a live performance with One Direction. And no, he has no relation to the NFL Network analyst with the same name (last names are spelled differently).
And the best for last. The league featured a minute-long “Together We Make Football” spot that showcased everything great about the game, on all levels. A good five seconds were spent with two Bears fans as they lamented about seasons lost. I think I cried a little. More than anything, that ad already got my pumped for the impending 2014 season, which will no doubt be as captivating as every season previous. Let the countdown to September begin.