Every year around this time Americans indulge in one of their many perverted versions of Sports Entertainment, The Super Bowl (WWE, Play Station, all year long). Sometimes, it becomes a bit hard to imagine how the Americans fall for these gimmicks over and over again. The answers rather simple though -Clinton, Bush, Obama.
Super Bowl is as famous for its half time shows as it is for its commercials. Punctuated somewhere here is a game of American Football. This year was not very different, Americans and American minded around the world sat watching brands sell them Muppets, Polar bears, Kings, Divas, Babies even Baby divas.
One of the most famous infamous commercial this year fortunately did not star a dog. It was Chrysler’s Clint Eastwood commercial where he says it “It’s Half time America”. Amongst all the sociopolitical undertones attached, I heard it as “It’s just a mid-life crisis America”.
All is not clichéd though; there were some mildly refreshing ads that might have appealed to the youth who seem like an endangered species on that side of the world. No wonder they win fewer Olympic medals now.
1. The Voice
You see, funny works with everyone. If you had to intelligently throw in everything in a single American commercial this does it. Celebrities, Check. Action, Check. Sexist Humour, check. The Voice – hell yes. It’s a formula commercial done well and must augur well for this popular reality show
2. First Bank Super Bowl
This one is maybe not particularly youth oriented but it’s a very interesting way of approaching the Super Bowl clutter. They make a damn good point, still the man looks like he’s been holding his piss too long. First Bank is not doing anybody a favour by being good at customer service. Side note: Piss off.
The good part: Succinctly focus on one message and one message only.
Not many who’ve spoken about the Super Bowl ads have given this one the attention that a Cheetah deserves. For sheer repeat views I think this makes sense. I mean what will you flip to? Discover Channel?
Appeals to the young not just because it has the “kick the snooty reality show TV host’s ass” attitude but also because it stars Melanie Amaro projected as a rag to riches story, the kind of stuff that flies of the racks. Overall it had the right element of drama for it to be enjoyed during the break and the legs to last a few months. Not an all time great though but deserves the R-E-S-P-E-C-T.
Eternal Optimism shows their Legacy and modern identity in one go. Grab some buds, cheers to that. It’s not a wazaaa! but hits the right buttons, especially with the how they’ve juxtaposed the music.
6. Coke Polar Bear
As much as I hate to, we have to bring the bears now. For reasons that really go beyond the ads themselves. Almost 600,000 people tuned into the live feed to see 2 bears supporting rival teams bond over a coke. This number was much higher than what Coke anticipated. Some problems are good to have. This whole idea od real time reactions from animated characters was novel. During the Doritos ad, (Doritos being part of Pepsi) for instance, the Bears dozed off. It’s the touch I tell you.
When you can relate to a candy, you’re too sweet for your own good. But Super Bowl was just that kinda party. If you’re buying a 30 sec spot for $3mn you’re expected to have a “I’m sexy and i know it” attitude. This commercial was dipped in it.
Overall it was a year of inclusive advertising with not many brands taking a chance wooing specific audience. It was democratic in the sense that most ads seemed like they had been nominated via social media. One of the big trends this year was Broadcast Bootleg. As expected brands released teasers.
So this now completes the life cycle of ads as products in themselves. There are identified parts to the whole – The Teasers, The Product, The Making, The Interactivity. The last 2 aspects usually post event and already mastered.
Maybe this is the reason Super Bowl advertising is so sought after, it pioneers advertising concepts and does not have “promotion” even in the fine print. It is flippant entertainment for whatever its worth. And that’d be Quite a lot.