Much to my surprise (though I am quite happy about it) the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl!
And while I am excited to see the team take home their first championship in franchise history, what I really want to talk about is the ads. Overall, I can honestly say that I was a little disappointed with this year’s advertisements in general. Focus on the Family’s pro-life ad featuring Tim Tebow was filled with pre-game hype, but ultimately had nothing to show. The Bud Light and Doritos commercials were clever, but nothing really made me crack up. Even the TruTV ad about “Punxsutawney Polamalu,” which some thought was very funny, was simply creepy and weird.
I suppose there really isn’t anyone to point the finger at. While some may say that the advertisers themselves dropped the ball, we have to remember that they were somewhat disadvantaged from the start. Ever since Janet Jackson’s “wardrobe malfunction,” the TV networks have been very wary of what ads are aired. Thanks to content censors we’re left with “too hot for TV” GoDaddy commercials (which are not in the slightest bit “too hot”) and bans on ads that are seen as inappropriate (ie. Mancruch’s banned ad).
Regardless, there were some ads that did well. Snickers Betty White ad (watch the commercial below) has emerged a one of the games better ads, earning the number one spot on USA Today’s Ad Meter. Motorola’s Megan Fox ad also made me laugh. My personal favorite though was the Google ad, which I’ll be discussing in a later post.
Although the Super Bowl is the Holy Grail of TV advertising, nothing beats good old fashioned originality and creativity. The ads that did well, and ultimately became fan favorites, didn’t do so because of when they aired… they did so because they were clever, original, and well-made. A little thought goes a long way. Advertisers need to stop making funny ads for the sake of being funny and start putting some thought into why they are doing what they’re doing. Maybe then we’ll see a Super Bowl where the ads live up to the hype.
Comment below with your thoughts on the big game’s ads!