Superbowl ad wrap-up

Not a big football fan myself, I nevertheless draped in our big comfy chair in front of the glowing television screen on  game day to watch (what else?) the Superbowl ads.

“Ads are on!” my husband and son would alert me, as I peered up from my book.

From the few that I could remember, the ads fell in roughly three categories: 1) heart-string tuggers, 2) screwball comedy and 3) misogynistic/objectification of women (what the heck does Danika Patrick and a girl who looks like a Hooters employee have to do with internet hosting?? and REALLY, you’d give away your wife to keep your TIRES?)

My overall impression of the ads was Deja Vu. For example:

  • Hyundai, which was a major corporate sponsor of the event, presented formula-based car commercials emphasizing quality and value. Cue the cars on the construction line, shiny vehicles on twisty roads. Nicely done, but rather dull for the Superbowl (notable exception: an ad with an aged by not-yet-retired Brett Favre).
  • Budweiser split the difference in a series of spots between girls in showers and an epic tale of friendship involving a Clydesdale and a Bull (sniff)
  • GoDaddy.com (sidetrack: one of the worst internet providers for customer service!) featured a number of spots that inexplicably pitted busty female against race car driver Danika Patrick for the coveted (??) position as a GoDaddy spokesperson.
  • Two ads in a row featured a “no pants” punchline: an overtired casual day reference: Careerbuilder.com, followed by the “Men without pants” Dockers ad. Superbowl ad reps: can’t you place your commercials better to at least TRY to make your advertisers look a little more creative?
  • Talking babies ads for E*Trade: only E*Trade could make babies look this creepy and unlikeable.

A few notables:

  • Doritos had nice ads overall; the result of viewer-made entries. The “Don’t touch my momma and Don’t touch my Doritos” ad was relate-able, the Minnesota-made “Samurai” ad was kitschy, and the “Dog removes shock collar” ad was screwball funny
  • Google featured a text-based ad about winning over a French girl. I liked this format better on Hulu, where the ads are shorter, but it still worked.
  • Budweiser, dinged above for a few predictable ads, at least had a spread of different ad approaches to keep us interested.
  • Snickers wisely employed Betty White for a gaffaw. She was dead-on in her comedic delivery.

Want a more quantifiable opinion about the Superbowl ads? Check out todays’ Star Tribune article about how a local ad company tracked tweets about Superbowl ads to determine the most popular spots. Or, visit the New York Times’ Best and Worst Super Bowl ads of 2010 article to view all and read their commentaries.

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