Every year there is one major event that brings family and friends together for camaraderie and criticism—The Big Game (because the other, more popular, way you know it is copyrighted). Whether you find yourself a die-hard fan of football or a chips and dip enthusiast with little knowledge of the game, the end of another NFL season can always be celebrated.
Along with The Big Game comes big commercials. The game is consistently one of the most viewed sporting spectacles of the entire year; marketers know it and they pay enormous sums to run an advertisement of either 30 or 60 seconds. Rarely will you see a closer following of something as dull and invasive that is otherwise overlooked in everyday life. The advertisements generate unprecedented amounts of hilarious and controversial moments, and without them there would be no one who “watches just for the commercials.”
Here are, in no certain order, the five most memorable commercials from Sunday’s game:
1) Honda – Queen-singing sheep
Despite your truck preferences, or need for truck-bed speakers, this commercial emphasized how underutilized singing animals are. This is a goldmine. It can be difficult for talking animals to come across as anything but obnoxious, so having them sing is a trend that might show up more frequently in the future.
2) T-Mobile – “Restricted Bling” ft. Drake
The “Hotline Bling” music video debuted in October of last year and was a marvel to behold. It opens the same way as the video, but pushy wireless carriers interrupt and prompt Drake to change lyrics to the song. Perhaps most comical is how ecstatically he agreed to the changes.
3) HEINZ Ketchup – “Wiener Stampede”
Dachshund dogs, wearing hot dog costumes, running in slow motion, big or small we loved them all. And why does ketchup even need advertising? Is someone not buying ketchup? I guess it is not as universally accepted as it once was. Either way, this commercial just bought itself a lifetime supply of adorable.
4) Hyundai – “First Date” with Kevin Hart
Overlooked by a majority of people, because so many of them missed it – this was one of the funnier commercials of the evening, and it aired before kickoff. The overly-skeptical-of-daughter’s-boyfriend dad of a dating daughter continues to be a classic stereotype, and Kevin Hart goes to new extremes.
5) T-Mobile – “Drop the Balls” Steve Harvey
Steve Harvey capitalizing on his colossal blunder on one of the world’s largest stages is continuing to impress more people. Verizon’s infamous ball commercial left other wireless companies looking incredibly inferior, and they have responded to it. Additionally, the clever #BALLOGIZE hashtag is hard to beat.
Apart from these five, there were maybe one or two other standout advertisements, on a day many considered to be the most important for commercials. If you have watched in recent years, there is a noticeable trend—commercials are beginning to stray from humor and focus more purposefully toward social movements that gain attention or raise awareness for large issues in the world. There are even commercials that precede the commercials teasing the commercial telling you to not miss the commercial. Maybe there is not much to be made of this, or it may just be a part of the age we live in, with hashtags, misdirection and celebrity cameos supporting an agenda during one of the largest televised events in the world.
Additionally and albeit somewhat unrelated to advertising, the halftime show garnered far too much attention for being something exceptionally corny. Yes, they are supposed to be fun and enjoyable—the majority of them are—but with millions of people watching, the obvious flaws could be fixed. With the exuberant performances, preparations and grandiosity, the halftime show receives, it feels massively out-of-place when the obnoxiously energetic fake fans begin to surround the stage and jump repeatedly throughout the entire performance.