The Best (and Worst) Super Bowl Commercials of 2013
Courtesy of Baltimore Ravens
Last night's game was full of drama. It was the first Super Bowl at the New Orleans' Superdome since Hurricane Katrina. It was the first time in Super Bowl history that a pair of brothers were the coaches going against each other. It was also the first time that Destiny's Child was reuniting since Beyonce ditched the other girls for a brighter future.
Baltimore started the first half pummeling San Francisco so hard that you had to feel bad for the 49ers, and also question how they made it to the biggest game of the year in the first place. Then suddenly in the third quarter the Superdome lost all power, and the game went dark. When the power came back over half an hour later, the momentum had shifted in the 49ers favor, and just like that we actually had a game.
It's no spoiler alert that the Ravens eventually won in the end, or that Beyonce rocked with her half-time performance, but what about the commercials? You know, the event we all really watch the Super Bowl for.
Here's our list of the best five (and a few duds):
See also: - Super Bowl Eats: 16 Most Awesome/Disgusting Food Stadiums - Gangam Style Bests Justin Bieber for Most-Watched YouTube Video Ever. What's the Formula? - Five Must-See Arts and Culture Events This Week in Metro Phoenix
5. Taco Bell: Best Music
The commercial features a group of elderly folk breaking out of their retirement home and embarking on a night of shenanigans worthy of a Hangover sequel. The best part was that while the characters were getting terrible tattoos, making out with men more than half their age, playing with fire, and smashing their nipples against the glass of a restaurant for unsuspecting diners, a Spanish version of fun.'s "We Are Young" was playing in the background. The only bad part of the commercial was the fact that it was for Taco Bell.
For the record, anything with Amy Poehler is a guaranteed winner, something we're sure the higher-ups at the struggling Best Buy were more than slightly aware of. She's shopping for electronics (obviously) and asks a million hilariously ridiculous questions. "What's an LTE, is it contagious?" "Can I use a dongle with this? Does it make you uncomfortable when I use the word dongle?" "What's the cloud? Where is the cloud? Are we in the cloud now?!" Her last question, asked while holding an e-reader, "Will this one read 'Fifty Shades of Grey' in a sexy voice to me?" is perhaps the best, partially because we don't believe she'd ever read such trash.
3. Budweiser: Most Heartwarming
Was it cheesy, yes, but that's all the more reason to love it. Quite frankly, anyone who takes Super Bowl commercials seriously is missing the point. The commercial centers on a young man who raises a Clydesdale and eventually sells him to Budweiser. When he reads in the newspaper (another example of how online news cannot be the future: it wouldn't have been the same if the commercial showed him perusing news online) and sees that the Budweiser Clydesdales are coming to town he makes the trip out to see them. When the horses pass by the man is saddened when his doesn't recognize him. Have no fear, just in time the eyeshades are taken off of the Clydesdales and the man's horse sees him walking away out of the corner of his eye. He comes racing down the road just as the man is driving away. If you didn't tear up, you must not have a heart.
2. Mercedes Benz: Best concept
Mercedes didn't hold back on its new marketing attempt at cornering the younger, hipper (and poorer) crowd. The commercial came off as more of a mini-film, thanks in part to its special effects and style of filming, as well as featuring the legendary Willem Dafoe, the beautiful Kate Upton, and crowd-pleasing Usher. The premise finds a young man having a drink inside an old, dark bar and watching an ad for a new Mercedes car go up on the billboard outside. Enter Willem Dafoe, playing the devil, who offers to make the man's dreams come true with the car if he makes a deal with him. Cue the man's visions of what his life would be like if he did own the car, including Upton pulling him in as her date at a red-carpet event, dancing with Usher, and being featured on a bevy of magazines, just to name a few. Just as the man's about to sign the deal with the devil, the last part of the billboard goes up, showing the starting price of the car in an affordable range for him. No deal!
1. Doritos: Most hilarious
Doritos wins for best laugh-out-loud inducing commercial, with its ridiculous goat/man friendship that bond over their love of Doritos. Unfortunately for the man his goat loves Doritos perhaps a little too much, and its nonstop chomping pervades his dreams and every waking moment, driving him insane and to the desperate point of selling the goat and hiding all of the Doritos. The best part is when the goat goes to the pantry and discovers it's empty. His screams are utterly hysterical. Making the commercial even better is the fact that it's fan-made and fan-voted, as part of Doritos' "Crash the Super Bowl" contest. If fans can make commercials this good, it makes you wonder why all companies don't have these kinds of contests!
Whenever there is good, there must be bad, and there were definitely some not-so-good Super Bowl commercials.
We'll spare you an entire list, but here are the worst two:
The disgusting makeout session between the gorgeous Bar Refaeli and no-name nerd was cringe and gag inducing, to say the least. It was so unnecessary and disgusting, we can't imagine how the marketing execs could have ever thought it was a good idea. We know GoDaddy is famous for shock and awe, but this was just way more shock and gag. (Its other commercial, which ended with the main character calling his server a sky waitress and everyone on the plane, including Danica Patrick as pilot, laughing like cheeseballs was funny)
We love Psy. Correction, we loved Psy. But Pistachios decision to bring him into the year 2013 with the tired "Gangam Style" song and associated dance just felt tired and cliché.
Get the Arts & Culture Newsletter
Find out about upcoming performances, exhibitions, openings and special events happening in the Phoenix art and theater scene.