Another Ad Bowl – I mean Super Bowl – Sunday is behind us, and I’m sure everyone is standing around the water cooler this morning chatting about the best commercials of the game – are water coolers a thing anymore? I thought the commercials were trying too hard to be creative and on top of that, funny, and in doing so lost their direction. More than any year I can remember, there were a lot of “huh” reactions going around the room. But yes, there were some good ones.
From 78Madison’s point of view, below were the best of the crop, in no particular order:
YOUTUBE – MIGRATION
This probably took the night. YouTube had an earlier commercial that caused a lot of “huh” responses in the room, but this was a good one. I mean come on. Haven’t you been waiting for football players to act like their mascots. Well, it happened. Creative. Entertaining. Memorable – particularly the little football egg at the end. So, football season is ending. But don’t worry, it’ll be back next season with NFL Sunday Ticket and YouTube TV.
If you’re one of the millions upon millions of people who have been waiting more than 20 years for this beloved Tony-winning musical to become a movie, you were in heaven watching the trailer for Part I. Well done. It draws the viewer in – even if you are one of those who have no clue what Wicked is.
This was a good ad, particularly for the Super Bowl. Solid concept. Recognizable guest stars.
Great commercial – “Tom Has Won Enough”. Reminds us that not only has Tom Brady won a lot of Super Bowls and made a lot of money, he’s also quite charming and funny on camera. Not just as himself, but as Tim Birdie, seven-time pool champion. Brady has the best line reading with “Why is my babysitter here?” while Vince Vaughn’s presence is practically white noise. Why does Brady want to become a broadcaster? He should just do this forever.
AGENT STATE FARM – Like a good neighbaaa…
State Farm is so foundationally well branded, that this humor with Arnold Schwarzenegger works. It’s funny, while driving home the brand essence – like a good neighbor state farm is there. The great thing about Arnold Schwarzenegger lasting for decades as a pop-culture hero is that each generation thinks it’s the first to discover that he’s got a funny accent. Nice cameo at the end, as well.
DOVE – It’s A Hard Knocks Life
Simply solid. Well produced. Good message. Keep playing sports as long as you want, girls. The spills and falls only make you stronger.
Funny. Just pure brand awareness. Nothing you truly must remember. Matt Damon steals the ad, no small feat when Ben Affleck, Tom Brady and JLo are also in it. Although JLo’s line at the end – Tom, you can stay – is good “gotcha” humor.
PLUTO TV – COUCH POTATO FARMS
Not sure Pluto TV can break through the streaming phenomena, but you have to admit, most people are tired of paying, paying, paying for everything they want to watch. From that perspective, we thought PlutoTV was brilliant. Settle in on that comfy couch, fellow Americans, and watch some TV for free.
URBER EATS – Don’t Forget Uber Eats
We thought this was a genuinely funny concept, executed in a memorable way. Sometimes a commercial does what it’s supposed to do. Imagine that.
REESE’S CARAMEL CUPS, “YES!”
Funny. Change in the horizon, and it is all good – we think. Great teaser spots, for the entire length of the commercial.
PARAMOUNT+, “Sir Patrick Stewart Throws a Hail Arnold”
Paramount+ doesn’t skimp – not only does this include Sr Patrick Stewart, Drew Barrymore, Jeff Probst, Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa, that dude from “Reno 911!”, and several animated characters, it’s also the rare and expensive two-minute spot, which cost the studio $28 million. And that’s before paying all those actors from their stable of stars. When you’ve got it, flaunt it.
A creative spot.
UNITED AIRLINES, “Believing is Everything”
So simple, yet so effective. Coach Taylor returns! Kyle Chandler makes every NFL fan want to book a flight to New Orleans for next year’s Super Bowl. The key message: Don’t worry, there are no change fees.
Some close, but no cigar spots…
Google Pixel, “Javier in Frame”
T-Mobile Home Internet
KIA – Perfect 10
Nerds, “The Union”
Hellman’s Mayonnaise, Save the Leftovers
Doritos Dinamita, “Dian & Mita”
Pizza Hut – Pizza Wa-Hut
That’s it for the Super Bowl LVIII commercial review. Would love to know where you landed on the best and the worst of them all.