Super Bowl Commercials: The Best and Worst! -- Plus, Vote for Your Own Three Favorites

SuperBowlBestWorst_DWNow that it’s Monday — the Super Bowl seemingly ended just a few minutes ago, amiright? — it’s time to take stock of the dozens of commercials that aired during the Big Game and evaluate them with fresh eyes.

Read my picks for the Best and Worst commercials – among those that were actively trying to do something, and not including movie trailers — then vote for your THREE most favorite in the poll at bottom.

RELATED | Our Reviews of the Commercials from the 1st Half and 2nd Half

THE BEST
Best Buy, “As Amy” | AKA hopefully the first of many ads featuring Amy Poehler. “Which one fits my face? Does it make you uncomfortable when I use the word ‘dongle’? Are we in the cloud now?!”

Budweiser, “Brotherhood” | 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.

NFL Network, “Leon Sandcastle” | 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.

Jeep, “Whole Again” | Oprah waxes patriotic over images of people waiting for loved ones to return home from tours of duty; stronger product integration amidst sentimentality than the Dodge Ram spot (below).

M&Ms, “Love Ballad” | The red M&M will do anything for love — especially when it involves Glee‘s Naya Rivera except when it involves licking his candy shell, whipped cream or other indignities.

Volkswagen, “Get In, Get Happy” | Some labored to drum up a “nontroversy” over the “white guy using Jamaican patois” device, but it effectively sells the light, blissful “Get Happy” premise.

Dodge Ram, “Farmer” | A memorable, Paul Harvey-narrated piece of aural and visual poetry based on a year–and-a-half-old YouTube video for Farms.com.

THE WORST
Budweiser Black Crown | Do we need another beer SKU on the market? The answer apparently yes — and this one is seemingly targeting douches, with the tagline: “Here’s to our kind of beer.” [Groan]

Bud Light, “Journey” Because, as one reader pointed out, the guys are holding voodoo dolls for their own teams at the end!

Blackberry Z10 | In the wake of so many unflattering headlines and questions about The Company Formerly Known as RIM’s future, there was a chance here to show off their brand-new (if not yet available) OS. Alas, they took the easy way out, listing things “it doesn’t do.”

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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38 Comments
  1. Makenzie says:

    Where’s the option for Calvin Klein?!

  2. Did you even read the update on that article????

    “Update: Farms.com is working with the Chrysler Group to raise money for the Future Farmers of America. The headline of this post has been changed to reflect that collaboration.”

    SO no demerit in my book for that as it looks like they are working together to raise money! Just sayin’.

  3. Reblogged this on Bag Lady Boutique and commented:
    Best Buy commercial was on the top of the list amongst others but that GoDaddy should have been on the banned list, worst ever in history.

  4. Jason says:

    What the hell is so interesting about Budweiser? Its just a damn horse… you Americans are so emotional. The Amy Phoeler video was most def the absolute best.

  5. Tran says:

    Best ad: Taco Bell. Worst ad: GoDaddy (again).

  6. Jim says:

    You didn’t list the Hyundai commercial where the kid assembles a football team. Any commercial that uses Quiot Riot deserves a least an honorable mention.

  7. bigby_wolf says:

    I thought the commercials as a whole were really really awful this year. The only ones I truly loved were Naya Rivera/M&M’s, The Oreo Commercial (was that the library from The Breakfast Club) and the little black fish singing No Diggity because I will absolutely drink your beer if you use No Diggity in your commercial lol.

  8. keith says:

    I was listening to the music in the blackberry ad. Marion black “who knows”. Great soul!

  9. DW says:

    I thought the Lincoln “phoenix” commercial was beautifully made. The other Lincoln commercial (Jimmy fallon? alpacas?) was awful. But the Phoenix one was gorgeous.

  10. George says:

    I still don’t get how anyone liked that Dodge commercial. It took 45 seconds before anyone knew what it was for, and it was bleak and boring. And I love a GOOD stirring commercial…the Jeep and Bud/Clydesdale ads totally worked on me. But that Dodge commercial was a huge fail.

    • Bob says:

      Guess you’re not a farmer. Or a true American.

      • Nat says:

        Maybe he’s someone who doesn’t like the Bible being hideously misquoted. I was honestly offended by this, far more than the White Jamaican of the VW commercial.

      • Kevin c says:

        That comment pretty much sums up why I disliked the manipulative farmer ad.

    • Alexandra says:

      I agree with you. I had no clue what the product was, wondered why they were advertising farmers, and spent most of the commercial trying to remember when Paul Harvey died and waiting for his “rest of the story” tag line.

  11. J. Norman says:

    I thought the GoDaddy.com ad with the goat was the worst of the night.

    A commercial I thought was pretty good was the one where the guy collapses at the alter after hearing that his (soon to be) Mother in Law will be living with him.
    The day is saved due to fast work by a Century 21 agent who quickly gets them a separate house.

    Overall, I would rate the commercials this year as a D+. There have been better years for sure.

  12. Cara says:

    The Kia commercial where the kid asked his dad where babies came from was good.

    • meem says:

      Agreed. I liked that one.

      As for Go Daddy, it’s the day after the Superbowl, and everyone is still talking about Go Daddy. They’re popping champagne at those offices, for sure. Brand recognition is what they’re after and on that goal, it’s mission accomplished. You may not know what they DO, but you’ve heard of godaddy.com!

  13. Where is the option for this year’s edition of “GoDaddy hates women”?

  14. Ben says:

    Amy Poehler is my comedy hero!

  15. Kim R says:

    I’m just glad I can finally read this article and the comments. For some reason I was being rerouted to a automatic ad playing page. ??
    Clydsedale…hands down. Literally cried. :)

  16. Kimmie says:

    Naya’s commercial was the best one! I ship her and that red M&M

  17. Jon says:

    Why no poll for worst commercial?

  18. Pia says:

    Oprah sounded like she was talking through a copper pipe.

  19. Katie says:

    I would have liked the M&M one better if Dr. Pepper hadn’t used that song to better effect a few years ago… (That one still stands as one of my all-time favorites)

  20. Not a single laugh in any of these commercials. I’d imagine most of the comments are too afraid to offend special interest groups so they’re not even trying to be funny anymore.

  21. John says:

    STILL one of the best, and the brand never appears until the end this time too.

    “Budweiser Ground Zero”

  22. Ace says:

    I’m glad you somewhat changed your tune on the Dodge Ram ‘Farmer’ commercial, Matt. Even if your couldn’t immediately tell what product it was, it still made quite an impact here in America’s heartland. My Facebook was blowing up with people reposting that commercial…that and the Jeep one (unfortunately our community has lost far too many kids overseas so that was definitely moving too.) I come from a farming community in Kansas and while several of my neighbors and friends are Ford or Chevy people, that commercial was one of the best we’ve seen in a while. People may not understand it or think its pandering to a demographic (which all commercials are, by the way), but it hit the mark with the demographic it was aiming for! Loved it! Here’s to the folks who work to put food on your and our tables! Here’s to the farmer!

    • ThatBob says:

      The Dodge and Jeep ads were designed to make the heartland forget that these Chrysler brands are now foreign owned (Fiat) and that they will shortly begin manufacturing Jeeps for the chinese market in China, not the USA.

  23. Loved Amy and the farmers and the Clydesdale. Also liked the Pizza Hut “Hut” commercial.

  24. Jules Williams says:

    Naya’s killing it! Hell yes! Love that commercial aaand she’s totally amazing!

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