Let’s agree to disagree. Considering the kaleidoscope of people that live in this country, I doubt we will all agree on the best and worst commercials aired during the 2013 Super Bowl. Still there are many commercials worthy of time and attention (at least that’s what the advertisers that paid millions of dollars hope). So below is a list of my favorite, least favorite and the most awkward, confusing commercials of the bunch. Feel free to share yours too!
“Epic Playdate” - As a Flaming Lips fan, I was sold on this commercial from the beginning. Who wouldn’t want to go on a day of adventures with dad and Wayne Coyne? Sure it was a Hyundai mini-van commercial, and I doubt anyone will run out and trade their BMW or Sedan for the Santa Fe tomorrow. But bless Hyundai for making family time appear cool and reminding me why I love going to Flaming Lips shows.
“Prom” - No one wants to go to prom alone, including the teenager in this commercial who is heckled by his younger sister for not having a date. Feeling empathy for his son, Dad throws him the keys to his Audi and the teen’s face lights up. When the young fella arrives at the dance he walks directly up to the Prom Queen and kisses her (because obviously the Audi gave him special powers, like confidence). The Prom King comes after the kissing bandit, cut to the next scene when the teen is happily driving home with a black eye. It’s a big story to share in just thirty seconds, yet the film work is done beautifully.
“Goat 4 Sale” - Doritos leaves it to the fans to make their Superbowl commercials and consequently have an easy out for ad wrong doings. However, this commercial didn’t need any outs. Everyone loves a cute goat, especially one that is clever and eats lots and lots of Doritos.
“Team” - A mom drives her son around town to recruit a team after the son was bullied on the playground. When the kid shows up at the end with his crew behind him, the bullies cower and I wanted to squeal with excitement. So cute and very cool Hyundai. Very cool.
“Whisper Fight” - Which part of the Oreo cookie tastes best? It’s a question that will always be debated as long as the delicious black and white cookies grace grocery store shelves world-wide. In this commercial, the debate starts as a quite conversation in a library and heats up into a full-on chaotic scene of people fighting, breaking objects and busting through walls. The noise from what may be happening may be intense but because the cast is in a library everyone keeps their voice to a whisper, which becomes kind of hilarious. My favorite part is when the cop car busts through the wall and the driver jumps out the door with his mega-phone and whispers, “Stop fighting. We are the cops.” So classic.
“Concept”- Calvin Klein chose man-model Matthew Terry, not to be confused with former Friends star Matthew Perry, as their underwear representative this year. Since David Beckham didn’t make his yearly cameo in his skivvy’s, someone had to… and this guy Perry did a pretty good job. If CK was feeing thrifty, they could have teamed up with Tide for a washboard abs scene and saved a pretty penny.
“Viva Young” – While old people sneaking out of the retirement home to party all night long is not a new concept, this particular take on a handful of seniors is hilarious. This may have been my favorite commercial of the night, but only because it’s what I imagine my grandparents doing on a regular basis. We must remember: we are never too old to have fun.
“The Brotherhood” - A man raises a Clydesdale colt until it is old enough to join the infamous Budweiser Clydesdale clan. Years later, he learns of a parade and goes to see his horse-friend march down the path. At the end, the horse’s blinders and harness are removed and he spots his former owner from afar. Unbeknownst to the man, the Clydesdale gallops towards him and the two eventually reunite in a tear-jerking embrace. It’s a tale of man and his best friend–simply stated, yet beautifully executed.
“Anthem” - MiOfit took a chance using Tracey Morgan as a spokesperson because his humor can be hit or miss, even when scripted. This commercial, however, the comedian was a hit. Pointing out the changes in trends in the last decade, like how men-bands have gone to boy-bands (and it’s time to go back), he excitedly explains the powdered beverage with caffeine as the new drink of choice–the new anthem–the next trend. Granted, with all that being said I’ll probably never buy the product.
“Space Babies” - Every parents dreads the “birds and bees” conversation with their children. So when this young kid asks his Dad where babies come from while sitting in the backseat of a Kia, the Dad comes up with this elaborate and creative story that involves space. Then at the end of the commercial, the kid goes to reveal what someone told him at school and is cut-off by the song “Wheels on the Bus” that the Dad turns on via voice-command. The commercial really has nothing to do with a Kia but is adorable none-the-less.
“The Perfect Match” - I get that a beautiful woman and a nerd making out is supposed to be funny but this scene was gross, and doubly-gross thanks to the slurping sound effects and camera close ups. Go Daddy is known for its controversial commercials but this one wasn’t so much offensive as it was disgusting. So disgusting I bet no one even brings it up at the office water cooler tomorrow. Yuck-town.
“No Diggity” - Sometimes I really wonder who is sitting around corporate tables making ad decisions. If a marketing person brought me a reel of an animated fish singing “No Diggity” swimming around a bottle of Beck’s Beer, I don’t know that I would slam both hands down on the table, stand and scream, “Yes! A fish singing a 90′s hip hop song is exactly what’s going to move beer off the shelves.” But in this case, someone must have said exactly that because that’s indeed what the ad portrayed. Maybe the ad started as a play on the saying “drink like a fish,” but the theme must have gotten lost in production. For I have never heard the saying “Sing Like Blackstreet” in regards to boozing.
“The Wedding” - Century 21 went the ole’ mother-in-law route and ended up spending a lot of money on a really lame commercial. I like to play in the land of make believe, but as if a bride is going to turn around and ask for a real estate agent when her husband-to-be passes out at the alter. And then for an agent to find a new home for the new couple by the time the wedding ceremony ends? C’mon Century 21. If you’re going to spend upwards of 4-mill to be remembered you can do better.
“Coronation” - Did anyone else feel this commercial was aimed at those that wear Ed Hardy? Based on the cast of people featured in the ad it seems you must dress in all black and be a d-bag to drink Black Crown. I imagine this is not the message Budweiser was hoping for but it’s what came across my television set. That and the fact that the Budweiser branding department is edging awfully close to another alcohol branding, a little whisky company called Crown Royal.
“God Made A Farmer” - This piece could have also been titled, “A Tribute To Middle America.” And while some of the scenes and images were quite stunning, the commercial seemed long, ambiguous and left me with the same feeling as when Jodie Foster ended her Golden Globes speech. I definitely like the idea of sharing the farmer’s story and enjoyed the theme of Americana embedded throughout the ad, but then thought the only type of farmer depicted appeared old, wrinkly and tired, making the tribute seem almost like a backhanded compliment. Huh?
“Get in. Get happy” - White dudes with a Jamaican accent? For sure I thought this was a Red Stripe commercial until a red VW popped up on the screen. By far this is the most confusing commercial, especially considering the company’s German roots. Apparently there was pre- Super Bowl buzz about whether or not the ad was offensive until VW admitted to doing a focus group study with 100 Jamaicans that claimed not to be offended. But then again, they probably thought it was a Red Stripe commercial too.
There were many other commercials I did not include in the good list that starred some funny famous people, like Amy Poehler and Best Buy, Deion Sanders and NFL Network, Paul Rudd, Seth Rogan and Lebron James for Samsung. Even YouTube phenom PSY made a cameo and performed “Gangnam Style” to represent Wonderful Pistachios. What were your favorite and least favorite 2013 Super Bowl Commercials?