Monday, February 5, 2007

XLI: The commercials

What can I say, the game went exactly according to my plan, at least after the opening kick off returned for a touchdown and Peyton's INT. It's like I'm psychic or something reading my last paragraph in my game prediction. Now let's get to the real hot topic: the commercials.

Except this isn't the hot topic it used to be, and hasn't been for a couple years. I think Super Bowl Commercials are the new Saturday Night Live--they hit their peak five or ten years ago, and have been in steady decline ever since. I'm not sure if this is another case of 'good ol' days' syndrome, or unrealistic hype and expectations or the downside of political correctness. Likely it's a bit of all three.

But it is what it is, so let's start at the bottom. CareerBuilder was the biggest loser with three ads that were all weak. Only one, 'Performance Evaluation', was even moderately funny, and none of them had a punchline. They just rambled on for thirty seconds. . .

Revlon Colorist with Sheryl Crow. I know they are trying to pull in the female viewer, but I don't care about how long Sheryl Crow's color lasts or how her paid road colorist feels about it.

Another big loser, and maybe this is just me, was the movie ads. Pride and Hannibal Rising both look like they could be good movies, but if you're spending $2.6 million for a thirty second spot, shouldn't the ad be something special, not just another film trailer?

Enough of the bad--let's move on and look at my top three.

Number Three Nationwide with Kevin Federline. I know this commercial took some heat from the fast food industry with their claim that it was insulting to their workers. Please. The commercial did not insult anyone, it merely played on the obvious fact that fast food workers make less than has-beens before they even-weres who used to be married to has-been pop princesses. Nothing wrong with the job, it just doesn't pay much. And I read Fast Food Nation. Don't get me started on the politics here. The commercial was funny. I'm certainly no fan of K-Fed, but I can appreciate it when someone can poke a little fun at themselves. I particularly liked K-Fed's return to reality:

K-Fed: What. . . rollin' VIP. . . what. . . rollin' VIP. . .

Manager: Federline!

K-Fed (still in perfect time): What?

Number Two As usual, Budweiser had the best commercials. At this spot we have Bud Light's 'Rock, Paper, Scissors'. The idea of two men resorting to a children's game to decide who gets the last beer is funny. So is the sudden, unexpected slapstick, but the kicker that you might have missed if you laughed too early is the comment afterwards:

'I threw paper.'

'I threw a rock.'

Number One Bud Light again, this time with the 'But he's got an axe' ad. Funny concept, good delivery by the axeman: 'It's a. . . bottle opener.' And yet again, the second punchline might have been missed, when the axeman now in the backseat takes over the girl's role and says, '...and a chainsaw!'

And that's the lesson for CareerBuilder: a simple but clever concept is a winner.

All commercials can be found at

1 comment:

patrick said...

I really liked the one where all the fans are depressed as the football season is coming to an end and the commercial says, "Some people have a hard time letting go" and then you see Brett Favre tossing a football around and the commercial says, "For some people it's harder." HILARIOUS