And just like that, another Super Bowl is over. Congratulations to former Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid for finally hoisting his well-deserved Vince Lombardi Trophy after leading the Kansas City Chiefs to a 31 – 20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers. And in between each exciting down and J.Lo showing off what 50-year-old woman is capable of, there were lots and lots of spots.
Each worth $5.6 million worth. But how much did they mean to the audience? What’s interesting to note is an individual’s reaction to a :30-second commercial sitting in isolation and watching online versus sitting in a gathering, which like a multitude of viewers, we had last night. Sometimes the reaction is the same. Many times not.
There were lots of trailers for movies and movie parodies. There were political ads for the first time ever. And there were plenty of dumb jokes. There were also a few well-done emotional spots that just didn’t connect with the football audience. We laughed and we cringed. And we got excited.
Did we mention 50-year-old J.Lo killing it on a pole?
So with that said, and as we tuck away the memories of another beer-guzzling, Kansas City pulled pork sandwich night, let’s take a look at our favorite Super Bowl spots and our least fave.
JEEP “Groundhog Day” Agency: Highdive
What can we say that already wasn’t said in USA Today’s Ad Meter? This was simply a brilliant spot with brilliant timing (the Super Bowl was actually on Groundhog Day). Bill Murray looked like he was having fun and it’s a commercial we can watch over and over and over again.
NFL “Next 100” Agency: 72andSunny
The NFL and 72andSunny follow up last year’s number one commercial, according to Reel 360, with an effort that almost reclaims the top spot again. This year’s glorious commercial featured real-life 13-year-old football prodigy Maxwell “Bunchie” playing a friendly game of neighborhood football when he breaks out of the pack. And runs. With his buddies in pursuit, Bunchie is cheered on by hall of famer Jim Brown, who watches from a park bench and tells him to “Take it to the house.” Bunchie does just that in one of the most visually entertaining spots in a long time.
MTN Dew “Zero Sugar, As Good as the Original” TBWA\Chiat\Day
This is how you do a Super Bowl spot. Mtn Dew Zero Sugar parody of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is spot on with a crazed Bryan Cranston, as Jack Torrance chasing after Black-ish’sTracie Ellis Ross as Wendy. Cranston as the murderous twin girls as well as the fluorescent green soda flooding out from the elevators in a nod to the iconic scene just make the spot all the more memorable.
Hyuandai Sonata, “Smaht Pahk” Agency: Innocean
“Bettah drives us,” so says Hyundai Sonata’s tagline. It also makes it way enjoyable to watch. In this :60-second spot, actors Chris Evans, John Krasinski and SNL alum Rachel Dratch channel their “Bahston” roots to “smaht pahk” Krasinski’s new Sonata.
Pringles, “Pringles Rick and Morty Commercial” Agency: Grey
In this very META spot, Pringles robot disguised as Morty – appears overly enthusiastic about the Spicy Barbecue Pizza stack, made using Pringles Pizza, Barbeque and Jalapeno crisps. Rick immediately catches on to his grandson’s bizarrely out-of-character corporate jargon, unmasks the Mortybot and comes to the startling realization that they’re trapped inside a Pringles commercial. And we ate up every second of it.
Again, we know how hard it is to get great work produced. There are so many factors involved from client demands to, well, client demands. So, this isn’t a ding against the creatives or the agencies or the clients for that matter. The spots just didn’t hit us as much as the other ones.
Pop-Tarts “Fix the Pretzel” MRY
Not sure what Pop-Tarts was trying to accomplish here. Even Queer Eye’s Johnathan Van Ness can’t save this spot.
President Donald J. Trump “Criminal Justice Reform”
President Donald Trump held the second of his two 30 second Big Game spots until the last minute in an apparent attempt to have some kind of answer to Michael Bloomberg’s campaign ad, which focused on gun violence. The President used his other spot to tout criminal justice reform by highlighting his pardoning of Alice Johnson, who had been serving a life sentence for nonviolent drug offenses. The end line of “President Trump got it done” seems to be a not-too-subtle dig at Bloomberg’s campaign theme of “Mike will get it done.” This spot did nothing for us.
Planters “Baby Nut” Agency: VaynerMedia
After a promising teaser which saw Planters mascot, Mr. Peanut, plummet to his “death,” Planters and AOR VaynerMedia offered a weird fake-out by introducing a baby version while other Wesley Snipes delivered a eulogy. The ending also felt like a knock-off from Guardians of the Galaxy and the birth of Baby Groot. “I am Peanut.”