Super Bowl: Top Ten Ads

As I’m sure you’re all aware, the Super Bowl was last night, and the Packers won! (Go Green Bay!) But I’m not here to talk about sports, I’m here to talk about what I really tune in for: the commercials. Below, I’ve ranked my top ten ads from last night, but before I get to listing, I want to explain what I think makes a good commercial (especially for the Super Bowl):

1) Narrative. I love when commercials can tell a story in a minute or less.

2) Humor. Good narrative makes a solid commercial, funny narrative makes a FANTASTIC commercial.

3) Uniqueness/Creativity. If a commercial’s really unique, it can sometimes get away with not being funny.

4) Cleverness. If a commercial makes a bold or clever statement, it can get away with not being funny.


5) Celebrities. The celebrity used should fit the product! If the use of celebrity is clever/funny/unique, bonus points!

6) Cat Herders.

Though I know that there can’t be Cat Herders in every commercial (it’s just my favorite Super Bowl commercial EVER), I’m serious about the other criteria. So, without further ado, my top ten:

10) Carmax- Kid in a Candy Store

My first thought when I saw this commercial was, “I would’ve loved to have been in that brainstorming session.” Especially when they were throwing around ideas like “wrestler in a folding chair factory.” I can’t help but wonder what else they came up with. I also enjoy the idea of infinite thought loops.

9) Mercedes-Benz- Welcome

I can’t lie, I’m drawn to this commercial because I love Janis Joplin, but I like P Diddy’s hunt to find his runaway car. I also like the idea of the cars getting together to celebrate the birth of a new generation of Mercedes.

8 ) Kia Optima- One Epic Ride

It’s carjacking through time and space. Even Poseidon wants to get his hands on this car. Poseidon! The mythology nerd in me is what got this into the top ten.

7) NFL- Best Fans Ever

I like this commercial because it’s got a lot of my favorite TV shows on it, but I’m also intrigued by just how much fan gear they edited in and how some of it actually looks legit. I posted the side-by-side comparison instead of the actual so we could all gaze in wonder at all the crazy things computers can do.

6) Doritos-  House Sitting


Dark question: How many kids will sprinkle Doritos over the graves of dead pets?

5) Bridgestone- Reply All

Maybe it’s just that frenzied screaming really gets me at the funny bone, but I cannot stop laughing at this commercial.

4) Volkswagen- The Force

This commercial was actually released online before the Super Bowl, but I avoided watching it because I wanted to see it for the first time during the game. This kid is the cutest little physical comedian you ever did see. And, as a Star Wars fan, I am legally obligated to put this ad in at least the top five.

3) Motorola – Empower the People

This is the only not-funny ad in the top ten, and that’s because I’m in love with the messaging/jab at Apple. This guy is reading 1984 at the beginning for a reason…and I think it’s because Apple’s becoming the Big Brother it swore to fight during the 1984 Super Bowl…at least, according to Motorola. So, now the XOOM will be used to fight the socialist effect of Apple, ending the control that iProducts have over us all.

2) Budweiser- Wild West

It wouldn’t be a true Super Bowl top ten list if there wasn’t at least one Budweiser commercial on here. This one has that classic Budweiser feel to it, taking a simple idea, adding beer, then giving it a silly twist; this time in a thrilling “Tiny Dancer” sing-a-long. (Side Note: Can someone explain to me why YouTube has an age limit on this video?)

1) Audi- Release the Hounds

This was actually one of the first commercials of the night, and I think for good reason. It tells a great escape story, it keeps you hooked with joke after joke, it has a unique spin on “luxury,” it cleverly waits till nearly the end to reveal the product, and it has a fitting celebrity guest: Kenny G. This ad hits all the right marks. (And if there’d been a Cat Herder, well, I would’ve had a new favorite Super Bowl ad.)

Other Superlatives:

Worst ad of the Super Bowl:

Teleflora- Help Me Faith

Bad Story, Unfunny, Weird Celebrity Appearance, No Clever Punch Line. Worst Super Bowl Ad.

Most Vocal Appearances by a Celebrity:

Tim Allen (in almost all of the Chevy ads)

Best Movie Trailer:

Super 8

Best Fox TV Promos:

House: “Would you like my churro?”

Worst Hair:

Humorously: Justin Bieber in the Best Buy ad.

Seriously: Ben Roethlisberger on his face.


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