Super Bowl LI featured the most exciting 4th quarter in the history of football, Lady Gaga jumping off the roof of the arena, and some really great commercials. USA Today has released the results of their annual ‘Ad Meter’, where people can rate the commercials that were aired during the big game. Out of the top 10, 5 were vehicle commercials from Honda, Kia, Audi, Ford and Buick. Check out the top 10 below:
Every year, we look forward to Super Bowl commercials; so much so that the price of these ads has been on a steady incline over the last decade, despite less people watching TV. According to Variety, Fox sold 90% of their commercial spots by December. (For those unfamiliar with the NFL schedule, the teams playing in Super Bowl hadn’t been selected by that time). With demand like that, prices are undoubtedly high.
For comparison, the average price of a 30 second slot during game 7 of the World Series this past year was just over $500,000. The average price of a similar spot during the 2016 Oscars cost around $2 million. Super Bowl 50 had reports of a 30 second commercial going for $5 million dollars! With prices like that, it’s no surprise that companies enlist advertising agencies with extensive repertoires to try and make the longest lasting ads. Despite ads only living on TV for seconds, they’re uploaded to YouTube nearly simultaneously and receive millions of views. And in more recent years, 90% of new ads are released on YouTube prior to the Super Bowl.
YouTube reports that brands whose ads are among the top 20 Super Bowl Ads on YouTube (2008-2016), reflect a 30% increase in subscribers in February after the release of a new ad. In fact, YouTube says that in 2016, viewers used televisions for YouTube’s services 3 times more than phones or computers.
Even though the Super Bowl is an American pastime, viewers from all over the globe go to YouTube to watch the ads. There has been a 28x growth in Super Bowl viewers from 2008-2016. The top non-American countries that tuned into the Super Bowl are: The United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Germany.
Below are the top 10 ads from 2008-2016. Thanks to geo-blocking, we weren’t able to get some of the orignal commericals, but you can still see why these ads got the amount of views that they did.
Budweiser Super Bowl XLVIII Commercial “Puppy Love”, 2014 – Anomaly Clash of Clans: Revenge (Official TV Commercial), 2015 – Barton F. Graf Volkswagen The Force: Volkswagen Commercial, 2011 – Deutsch Budweiser Super Bowl Commercial “Lost Dog”, 2015 – Anomaly Pokémon #Pokemon20: Pokémon Super Bowl Commercial, 2016 – Omelet Mountain Dew Mtn Dew Kickstart: Puppymonkeybaby, 2016 – BBDO Duracell: Trust Your Power – NFL’s Derrick Coleman, 2014 – Saatchi & Saatchi Bud Light Super Bowl XLIX Commercial – Real Life PacMan, 2015 Energy – BBDO T-Mobile #KimsDataStash | T-Mobile Commercial, 2015 – Publicis BMW i3 2015 Big Game Commercial – Newfangled Idea, 2015 – KBS
Some people watch the Super Bowl for the football. Other people watch the Super Bowl for the commercials—because when this much money goes into an ad, we’re expecting something on par with Braveheart, packed into a 30-second spot! While this year’s crop of 2014 Super Bowl car ads might not contend for all-time best—see our best-and-worst list of 2013 Super Bowl car ads for comparison—they were still worth a good laugh (or cry—from shared embarrassment). But no one watches the SuperBowl for the commentary! So, without further ado, here are our choices for the best 2014 Super Bowl automotive car & truck Ads for your viewing pleasure:
Kia’s Matrix Commercial – “The Truth”
Morpheus makes a comeback! Does Laurence Fishburne look like he’s put on a few pounds since the Matrix? While the unexpected opera singing was entertaining, and the Matrix reference always welcome, the commercial itself was somewhat weak considering the massive infusion of cash it took to make. Still, it was rather satisfying on first viewing.
“Every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings.” Volkswagen takes this heart-warming scene from “It’s a Wonderful Life” and makes it, well, awkward. Funny too. When their Volkswagen hits 100,000 miles, and a father’s teenage daughter is unimpressed, he goes on to describe how “every time a Volkswagen hits 100,000 miles, a German engineer gets his wings.” Wings being some equivalent to puberty? Pubic parts in general? I’m not really sure on this one. Some indignant Twitter-ers noted that the only woman in the commercial was ‘sexually harassed’. By wings. Who ever imagined VW could be controversial?
Audi Super Bowl Commercial – “Doberhuahua”
Audi is trying to give you nightmares. They led up to this ad with two teasers, “Dog Show” and “A Special Message from Sarah McLachlan.” For those who don’t get the Sarah McLachlan reference (I was clueless), she was once featured in an extremely sad ad by the ASPCA. Audi’s commercial mashes the two teasers together, albeit cleverly, in a look at how compromise is like a scary mutant dog that would probably bite your face off. Just watch it.
Hyundai Elantra Super Bowl Commercial – “Nice”
I don’t usually get to totally and freely voice my opinion, so here it is: LAME! What was Hyundai thinking? “We need something with a ‘love story’. I know, let’s have them both driving the Elantra! And the guy is trying to flirt, but he’s bad at it. That’s funny, right?” Sure, they did pick Big Bang Theory’s Leanord Hofstadter (Johnny Galecki) as the failed flirt. And Richard Lewis randomly materializes in the back seat—I almost didn’t notice. But overall the ad falls flat. The fine print is the best part: “Cars can’t jump over busses.” Challenge accepted!
Jaguar Super Bowl Commercial – “The Rendezvous”
What villain wouldn’t want to drive a Jag? This clever ad looks at what makes a Hollywood villain, and “why all the best movie villains are British” by featuring three well-known British actors: Ben Kinglsey, Tom Hiddleston (think Loki from the Thor movies) and Mark Strong. The moral of the story? “It’s good to be bad.”
2015 Hyundai Genesis Super Bowl Commercial – “Dad’s Sixth Sense”
This is an improvement over Hyundai’s other Super Bowl ad. Innocean USA made the ad, and when I first saw the name I misread it as “Innocent”—which would make sense, as sweet seems to be Hyundai’s strong suit. Because when they try to be funny they stumble through the joke like an awkward uncle would. This innocent ad shows how dad saves the day, and even when he can’t how Hyundai’s new safety systems still have your back.
CarMax Super Bowl Commercial – “Slow Clap”
Whenever I look at a commercial, I look to YouTube comments to verify my opinions. Because people on the Internet are always right. The most accurate comment: “not impactful.” The funniest comment, courtesy of a user who calls himself BinkieMcFartnuggets (who appears to have made it his lifetime goal to be the top comment on every Super Bowl commercial on YouTube): “Way to alienate people without arms, CarMax!” There. I just saved you endless reading through the comments section on YouTube. You can thank me later.
Chevrolet Silverado HD Super Bowl Commercial– “Romance”
“A man and his truck…and a very eligible bachelor.” The bachelor is a bull. It’s another good ‘ol country classic by Chevy!
Chevrolet Super Bowl Commercial “Life”
Chevrolet’s second Super Bowl commercial may not be the over-the-top ad you might expect. Instead, it is a sombre and heart-felt celebration of cancer survivors—no big special effects, no big celebrities—set to the music of relatively unknown Norwegian artist Ane Brun. It may not have broken the bank, but this ad struck a chord in the hearts of many people at home.
2015 Chrysler 200 Super Bowl Ad
Bob Dylan narrates Chrysler’s patriotic spot for the Chrysler 200, playing “Things have Changed” and intoning how “You can’t fake true cool” while images of Detroit auto workers play in the background. Things have indeed changed, or so the debate goes on Twitter, where some claim that Dylan has sold out. Whatever your opinion, it’s a classy commercial that continues Chrysler’s focus on being in “American import.”
Ford Fusion Hybrid “Nearly Double” Super Bowl Commercial
Billed as a “never done before” two-part commercial, this ad starts with comedian Rob Riggle sitting with a Yorkie and promises a commercial with “double the length, double the awesomeness.” The second part features James Franco (announcing himself as “Rob Riggle”) sitting beside a tiger. More awesome indeed. “Comedian Rob Riggle demonstrates what #NearlyDouble actually means in the Big Game commercial from Ford. But why does Rob look so much like… James Franco?” the video caption on YouTube reads.
Maserati Super Bowl Commercial – “Now We Strike”
10-year-old Oscar-nominated Quvenzhane Wallis is the star and narrator of Maserati’s Super Bowl commercial. With the tag line “Walk out of the shadow, quietly walk out of the dark – and strike,” at least the writing is good—but the delivery gets mixed reviews. Unless you stick out this ad until the end, you may be thinking you just watched an ad for the next zombie apocalypse movie.
Jeep Cherokee “Restless” Super Bowl Commercial
While not particularly adventurous or innovative considering some of its commercials of the past, Chrysler’s 2014 Jeep Cherokee commercial that aired during half-time did a good job of introducing the Cherokee’s new look by showing adventurous people doing adventurous things with an adventurous vehicle.
Mazda 3 Super Bowl Ad with Bruce Lee
Mazda’s Super Bowl commercial talks about “defying convention” – something the commercial itself doesn’t try very hard to do. Mazda uses Bruce Lee as an example that bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better—and leads into how they have made their cars lighter, more fuel efficient, blah, blah, blah. It’s the same thing we have heard in 1000 car ads before.
Honda Super Bowl Ad with Bruce Willis and Fred Armisen #hugfest
Honda focuses on vehicle safety while showing the softer side of Bruce Willis in this ad about vehicle safety. However, the awkward touching in this video remains more awkward than funny.
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