I’m a bit of a sport nut. I’ll watch pretty much anything. Apart from F1 (Don’t start). I’ve always liked the idea of NFL but in the end, it just takes too long and there’s too many interruptions. Plus, it’s greatest game, The Super Bowl, is on in the middle of the bloody night – UK time.
For an advertising fan, though, those annoying interruptions in the sporting action mean that the Super Bowl has also turned into a bit of a mini advertising festival of creativity. Not quite so mini budget-wise, mind you.
Some of the most memorable TV ad spots of all time have had their premieres during the Super Bowl. From Mean Joe Greene for Coke to Li’l Darth Vader for VW, Apple launching the Macintosh to Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny's bromance for Nike, every year presents an opportunity for a whole host of committed brands to present their epics.
Providing, of course, they are prepared to spend the $5m needed for a 30 second spot. That’s a soft cap, apparently.
So what of this year’s efforts? As you might expect, there’s a whole load of chest-beating Americana, plenty of tech and some downright weirdness. I do like lists, so here’s my personal top 5 from this year’s efforts.
Coverage was littered with Toyota ads this year under the banner of ‘Start Your Impossible’. Focusing on the importance of movement, the freedom of it gives us and Toyota's goal to push the envelope. Mostly though, I’ve picked this because it features a seemingly viable flying car!
Mountain Dew takes on Doritos in a rap battle between celebs lip-syncing to hip-hop classics. Fairly standard brand fare but just for Morgan Freeman dubsmashing Missy, this one goes in.
Now it gets good. A parody of a whole host of Super Bowl ad types. Cars, beer, insurance, jewellery, etc. All the clichés, all a Tide ad. Not totally sure why this is so great. Maybe because Hopper from Stranger Things is in it? Yeah, that’s it.
What would the red M&M look like if it was human? Danny DeVito, obvs.
I’d just have loved to have been in the meeting where this idea was pitched. “Okay, what if Alexa… lost her voice?” Take a bow. Applause. The crowd goes wild.
Like this list or is it... Incomplete?!!?!