When it comes to the Super Bowl, I have come to believe that there are two types of people — those that watch it for the big game and those who watch it for the silly commercials.
Which category do I fall into? I will answer by saying that there was a lot of sportsball interrupting my commercials Sunday night.
I have never been a sports or football person, but I’ve regularly watched the Super Bowl almost every year simply to catch the commercials. Despite the commercialism of it all, I still find amusement in them as the companies try to out do each other (and sometimes themselves) year after year.
Over the years, there have been many good commercials that have stuck in my mind, ranging from “Mean” Joe Greene drinking a Coke, to Apple breaking down an Orwellian society in 1984 with its computers. A personal favorite of mine is a commercial by E-Trade that featured low-resolution video a monkey dancing for 30 seconds accompanied by the words “We just wasted 2 million bucks.”
There is a balance needed in the art of making a good Super Bowl commercial — you want it to be memorable, but in many in recent years I think companies have gone too far with wackiness or randomness to catch viewer’s attention. At the end of the day, the viewer still needs to recognize what is being advertised.
This year featured that randomness, but some still stood out. Google used a real-life story of an elderly widower using their voice recognition and personal assistant software to remember his wife hit personal heartstrings for a lot of people.
Another, featured characters the surrealist animated series “Rick and Morty” decrying the tropes that come with Super Bowl commercials, all the while appearing in the very thing they were opposing. It is things like this that make an advertisement stand out, and ultimately I think that is the goal of it all.