super bowl ads
Since I started writing for this site, I've had the pleasure of seeing episodes of shows like Dexter and Leverage before anyone else. I've had the pleasure of conversing with some of the industry's most interesting characters. But now I know I've truly made it: I got to watch a Super Bowl ad before the rest of the world. Who wants to touch me?
This year's Super Bowl will, of course, feature new commercials for Coca-Cola including a rather interesting one featuring that mecca of brand advertising, The Simpsons.
It actually takes quite an interesting turn from what you might expect. It's not all that silly. It's actually quite sad and even sullen, compared to ads featuring the show's characters in campaigns for Butterfinger and KFC. Watch it for during the game, even if you're like me and you actually watch the Super Bowl for the actual Super Bowl.
TV legend Ed McMahon, 85, has been in the hospital for the last month and his condition has only gotten worse.
TMZ reported a source close to the family said his condition has been upgraded to "extremely serious" since he has been moved into an intensive care unit. He has also contracted pneumonia, which at his age can make things very serious.
There weren't any Super Bowl ads that made me want to kick in my television set this year, but I think that says more about the dullness of the ads rather than any brilliance. There weren't many memorable ads. I asked a friend of mine about the ads, and she said, "I think there was a cute one, I don't remember what it was."
Below are the five ads I chose as the worst of the night (not including the movie ads - those are in a different category and shouldn't be counted when you're judging the commercials). They range from confusing to lame to downright sad.
NBC is airing the Super Bowl this year. Sunday's all-day telecast (several hours of pre-game and probably another four or so for the game itself) will feature a wide variety of guests. Which of these guests are not going to be seen during the broadcast?
Top Chef's Tom Colicchio
NBC has pulled a PETA ad that was going to run during the Super Bowl, because it "depicts a level of sexuality exceeding our standards." Hey, what about subjecting viewers to those people on The Biggest Loser? And they usually have their tops completely off. This particular commercial shows various lingerie models getting all frisky with broccoli and pumpkins (pumpkins??). I guess it is pretty sexual, though I've seen edgier things on daytime soaps.
Funny how there is always a few controversies when it comes to these Super Bowl ads, either before they run or after the fact.
PETA says that they don't understand why the ad was pulled when ads for chicken and burgers are OK even though they make you "fat" and "boring in bed." As an eater of chicken and burgers, I resent that.
Since its origins, television has always been supported by the movie industry. It makes sense since they're so interconnected (television is mostly an ad-based revenue stream and I've heard that the marketing budget of a lot of studio films is something like 40% of its total cost).
I'm sort of sorry to hear this. I'm not a sports fan but have always tried to catch the Super Bowl because of the clever commercials. It's not likely that Star Trek or X-Men Origins: Wolverine is going to do a Bowl-specific ad. On the other hand, if they did get Hugh Jackman to dress in costume and puncture a football with his claw, or Chris Pine to vaporize it with a phaser, it would be the talk of the water cooler the next day.
NBC is airing the game this season, on February 1, and they plan to use some of the ad time to "reintroduce" people to several of their shows. God knows they need it. They're going to show clips from several series, remind longtime fans of each show what's important to keep in mind about the show, and also take some time to try to lure new fans to the shows as well. That's a tall order. The shows that will probably be plugged include the entire Monday night lineup (Heroes, Chuck, and the returning Medium), as well as the special episode of The Office that will run after the game, the new drama Kings, and perhaps Amy Poehler's new comedy. The network might even use USA and Bravo to promote stuff during the game.
This could possibly work. Heroes, Chuck, and Life are taking January off so it will be good to remind viewers, "hey, remember these shows?"
A new column here at TV Squad, where we talk about all of the things you're missing when you hit fast forward on your DVRs.
I thought I'd kick off the very first Brought To You By...column by talking about yesterday's Super Bowl ads (apparently there was also a game of some sort played...). USA Today did their annual ranking of the best and worst of the ads, having a bunch of viewers watch the ads with meters and give an opinion on the good and the bad, and for some reason Bud got the top spot, the way they do every single year. It must be that the people who vote on these things like horses, wacky comedy, or they're all drunk (on Budweiser). The company got three of the top ten slots, and number one went to the spot where the dog trained the horse, accompanied by the Rocky theme. It's bad enough that Bud seems to win over viewers every year, but this dog/horse ad wasn't even the best of the Bud ads yesterday!
Anyway, I have my own thoughts on the best and worst, and I'll list them after the jump.
Advertisers still spend a ton of money on the Super Bowl. They use it to launch new products, advertise new movies, and convince guys that only one special beer will make us irresistible to scantily clad models. We'll have full coverage of the Super Bowl ads again this year, but maybe we can go one step further. The New York Times reports that there's still one ad slot left for the game, and FOX is only asking for $2.7 million for the 30 second ad.
So how about we all pool all of our money and buy the spot for TV Squad?
I think all of these Bud ads are trying to push across one major point: if beer is involved, men don't make very good decisions.
I'm offended by this notion. Except when it comes to women, of course. We've all been there, right guys? But to say that a man driving along a spooky dark road with his girlfriend would pick up a scraggly hitch hiker carrying an axe just because he's also carrying a case of Bud Light...that's stretching it. Why is he carrying a case of Bud Light? Where did he get it? Did he take it when he killed a bunch of people at a party? And like I said earlier, this is Bud Light we're talking about.
You just know he's going to pick up the guy with the chainsaw at the end too, and then they'll be in trouble. Or maybe he'll fight the other hitch hiker, a la Freddy vs. Jason.
I've often had days like this, when everything seems to go wrong with the work I'm doing. But with me it's usually Engelbert Humperdinck that's causing all the problems.
This ad is surreal, and funny. You lack energy in the afternoon at your office, and that's when singer Robert Goulet comes in and messes things up: screws up your office, knocks things over, causes havoc. The only way to get rid of him is to eat a handful of Emerald Nuts and you'll get your energy back. Until tomorrow, when Goulet returns.
One of the better ads, I think. Emerald always does something off-kilter with their commercials and this one is no exception. I like when they use older celebs like this. Humperdinck's next.
This is my favorite ad so far. Of course, we're only 15 minutes into the game.
A mouse - a real, live mouse - is pressed and dragged by two other animals because they heard that if you use a mouse you can get online to get Blockbuster's Total Access service. This is a sequel of sorts to other Blockbuster ads from Super Bowls past, and it's quite cute. They click the mouse, drag it, and then the punch line has them saying "it's not plugged in!" Though the punchline should have just been the mouse's face looking worried, not the mouse telling the others off.
That's Jessica Simpson? Yeah, she's still hot and all that, but do I imagine something or does something look off about her face? She doesn't look quite...real. Too much make-up, maybe? I don't know, maybe high-def isn't great for celebs.
So Cheesy Bites are back. I didn't even know they had gone away. But it looks like everyone is crazy for them, so there must be something to them, right? Jessica walks the red carpet and seems really happy that the Cheesy Bites are back at Pizza Hut.
Oh, by the way, welcome to hour Super Bowl ad coverage. Since everything in this game is sponsored, from the pre-game to the player intros to the kick-off, I'd like to announce that the typing I'm doing is brought to you by the Sam Adams Beer I'm drinking right now.
Well, not the game. I mean, really. But we'll be covering the new, expensive commercials that are going to debut tonight. Coverage begins around 6:30pm, right when the game is supposed to start, but there will be probably be an hour of player introductions, coin flipping, and steroid testing.
By the way, the pre-game coverage is taking place on CBS right now. It started a month ago.
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