Like most Americans, once a year I stop everything I’m doing on a Sunday night for the mother of all football games. The Super Bowl.
I’m not a big pro football fan. In fact, I follow college sports more closely than I do professional sports, but you’d have to be completely off the grid (or living under a rock) not to know the Carolina Panthers were heavily favored to take the Lombardi trophy home to Charlotte.
I like Cam Newton (who doesn’t love a guy that tosses a game ball to a kid after every touchdown he scores), but Peyton Manning is…well…Peyton Manning and I always root for 1. the underdog and 2. old people. So while I was pulling for the Broncos (and am happy about the outcome) I was really much more interested in the commercials than I was in the game.
I’m a Giants fan by birth, a Redskins fan by marriage and a Falcons fan by property taxes, so it’s been close to a decade since I’ve had a dog in the fight which means I’ve had a lot of time to cultivate a keen sensibility regarding what makes a good Super Bowl ad. Here are my Top Ten picks for 2016.
#10 Carvana. I’m not sure what a twerking guy in a kimono has to do with buying a car, but I never even heard of Carvana until I saw this commercial and now I can get neither the company name nor the annoying techno-jingle – that didn’t suck – out of my head (yeah, thanks for that). It drove me to visit the site and I’m not even in the market for a car. Mission accomplished.
#9 Avocados from Mexico. In this one, a bunch of space aliens tour the Museum of Earthly Wonders and ogle artifacts representing the unique bounty of our planet: The Cube of Rubic, coach seating on a plane, imogees, the white and gold dress that nearly sparked a social media civil war, Scott Baio and of course, Avocados from Mexico. I’m kind of surprised that nobody’s shouting racism! or claiming to be offended by the subtle immigration innuendo. Maybe I’m a comedic savant and the joke was lost on everybody else.
#8 Wiener Stampede. This does not compel me to run out and buy Heinz ketchup or mustard, but a stampede of Wieners dressed in wiener costumes is inherently funny, not to mention a rare example of a live-action homograph.
#7 Budweiser USA #NotBackingDown. The Super Bowl isn’t the Super Bowl without the Budweiser Clydesdales. End of discussion.
#6 Budweiser USA #ActLikeIt. Budweiser historically airs a funny ad during the Super Bowl. Two of my all time favorites are Wassup?! from 2006 and the Budweiser Frogs from 1995. Anyway, in this years funny ad, a guy on a grocery store beer run is coerced into buying a twelve-pack of Bud by a talking Clydesdale. Clever tag line: It’s the Super Bowl. Act like it. Plus I love talking animals. #MisterEdIsNotDead
#5 Doritos Dogs. In this one several dogs persistently attempt to sneak into a grocery store, bypassing the NO DOGS ALLOWED sign, in order to buy a bag of Doritos. It’s comical, especially if you’ve ever had a sneaky dog pull one over on you.
#4 Honda Ridgeline. Queen. Singing sheep. Talking dog. What’s not to love?
#3 Hyundai First Date. Kevin Hart is hysterical in his role as the classic overprotective stalker dad. If you guessed angry radical feminists are crying “sexism” and “misogyny” and “oppressive patriarchy,” pat yourself on the back. They are. Because… duh…angry radical feminists. On another note, Queen’s Another One Bites the Dust is an utterly brilliant choice of musical track.
#2 Buick Cascada. “The big game meets the big day” when the bride tosses her bouquet and a wedding guest snags the prize… Odell Beckham style.
#1 Doritos Fetal Ultrasound. I. Am. Still. Laughing. Plus as an added benefit it pissed off a bunch of abortion activists.
The thing is, human fetuses are in fact (sit down) HUMAN so humanizing them is kind of unavoidable.
So those are my Top Ten 2016 Super Bowl Ads, but before you go, check out the special Honorable Mention and my choice for overall Creepiest and Most Unsettling Ad of the bunch.
Honorable Mention: Subaru Dog Tested. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a dog driving a Subaru, nor is it the funniest of the Dog Tested series, which is why it didn’t make the Top Ten, but if you’re a parent who’s ever had to drive laps around the neighborhood to get a kid to fall asleep, you know it deserves a special place of honor on your list of favorites. Been there. Done that. (cough…JaredDatoc…cough)
Creepiest and Most Unsettling: Mountain Dew PuppyMonkeyBaby. Proof that Gestalt Principle – the whole is greater than the sum of its parts – is not universally applicable.
If you think there’s an ad that didn’t make the list that should have, let me know. Leave a note or post a youtube link in the comment section.
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