Who drafted big stars to shill? Who went for laughs? Who tugged at heartstrings? And who went out of their way to remind us with a sledgehammer, “Sex sells”?
Read our quick take on the commercials from the 2nd half of Super Bowl XLVII — refresh for updates! — beneath this handy gizmo for playing back your faves (or ones you missed whilst hitting the loo), then share your own reviews in Comments. (Ratings from the 1st half are here.)
2 Broke Girls | As much an overproduced spectacle as anything from a car or soda pop peddler, this elaborate David LaChapelle-directed promo serves up Max/Kat Dennings and Caroline/Beth Behrs as tarty pole dancers and, ahem, batter-stirrers. If the intent was to sell sex, it gets a FIELD GOAL. But if selling a situation comedy, FUMBLE.
Iron Man 3 | Just a teaser, but one that captures the franchise’s mix of suspense, superheroics and humor, as Tony Stark struggles with the math in saving 14
airline Air Force One passengers four at a time. FIELD GOAL
Blackberry Z10 | Since I am (probably/possibly) waiting to get my hands on the Z10 (or its cousin the Q10) this spring, I’ve been waiting to see what this first ad would tout. Alas, the company fka RIM however took the easy way out, demonstrating the things “it doesn’t do.” FUMBLE
E*Trade | Yes, an annual crowd-pleaser — “How’d they do that! He’s just a baby!” Perhaps Mr. Joel McHale explains my SAFETY best:
E-Trade has been using this talking baby for the last 6 Super Bowls. Shouldn't he be ACTUALLY talking by now & not just fake mouth talking?—
Joel McHale (@joelmchale) February 04, 2013
Bud Light | Wow, they’re actually going for a theme here, with Stevie Wonder back as the mystical “mojo” man, who this time defers to his pretty assistant to turn a guy’s chair “lucky.” FIELD GOAL
Axe Apollo | Lifeguard punches out shark to save a pretty girl… who then up and leaves him for the arms of an astronaut (aka metaphor for the Apollo in the product name). Assuming this somehow appeals to those who drench themselves in the clubgoer’s parfum: SAFETY.
MiO FIT | Aww, we barely had a chance to miss 30 Rocker Tracy Morgan, here ruminating on how things change (or need to change back, in the case of boy/man bands). I appreciate the idea of MiO (and this might get me to finally try it), so I’ll score a SAFETY.
KIA | Pretty humanoid robots benignly look on as a guy inspects a KIA — until he kicks the(ir) tires. At that point, he gets pounded, atomic-wedgie’d and hurled across the showroom. “Respect the Tech,” indeed. FIELD GOAL
Gildan | Never heard of this T-shirt brand, not sure what it was going for. Wasted money. FUMBLE
Wonderful Pistachios | “Crack your nuts now” as PSY reinvents “Gangnam Style” to
shell shill pistachios. Suitably noisy, snicker-worthy lyrics aside. FIELD GOAL
Mennen Speed Stick | The old “Caught fondling a girl’s bloomers” laundromat scenario. We’ve all been there. And since she ends up finding his gesture sweet, let’s go with a FIELD GOAL.
Beck’s Sapphire | A fish sings Blackstreet’s “No Diggity” (or as you may now know it, Addison’s wedding march) to an ebony bottle of Beck’s new brew. OK…. SAFETY
Budweiser | A Clydesdale reunites with the man who raises it as foal, as “Landslide” plays throughout. As the long-running series of Clydesdale commercials go, one of the very, very best. TOUCHDOWN
NFL Network | Irked by incessant talk of the hot new rookies (and a make-up lady unaware of his origins), a bewigged Deion Sanders enters the NFL draft as “Leon Sandcastle” — or “an ugly Deion Sanders.” A fresh, fun way to promote the network’s draft coverage. TOUCHDOWN
Dodge Ram | Had this piece of poetry, based on a Paul Harvey reading, been a pro bono promo for, like, the National Young Farmers’ Coalition, it’d be a huge TOUCHDOWN. But as a truck commercial,
a mere SAFETY. Upgraded to FIELD GOAL, in light of information that Dodge in fact supports the FFA (denoted in mousetype at end of ad).
Tide | A 49ers superfan’s fantasy comes true when he gets a Jesus-like “Joe Montana” salsa stain on his team jersey. Cue elaborate dreams of fame, branded merchandise and a mansion. ‘Cept, his Ravens fan wife launders the evidence away before he can cash in. Predictable yet cute payoff to a well-realized concept: FIELD GOAL.
SodaStream | This spot has already been running, but caused a stir last week when CBS got antsy about showing Coke-and-Pepsi-type competitors exploding. Looks like the Benjamins won! FIELD GOAL, partly for the product’s inherent green message.
Mercedes Benz CLA | The Devil — played by Willem Dafoe, of course — offers a guy the new CLA and all that comes with it (jam sesh with Usher included) in trade for his soul. Guy opts for the $29,900 price tag instead. FIELD GOAL just for the casting.
Samsung Galaxy | Paul Rudd and Seth Rogen each believe they’re being courted as a pitchman for Samsung’s “next big thing,” only to realize they’re instead wanted for a brainstorming session. Much riffing, many zingers and a Lebron James cameo ensue. Rudd + Rogen almost always = TOUCHDOWN.