With a 30 second commercial in this year’s Super Bowl costing an estimated $5.6 million, advertisers once again wanted to make sure they created something memorable and buzzworthy. Along the way, there were some definite winners and some that missed the mark — and based on personal preferences, everyone has their own lists of which commercials fall into which categories.
Here is a look at some of the commercials our team felt hit the right mark, whether that was for generating a laugh, making us cry and causing us to look at something in a new way.
Angela Freckleton, Communications Specialist
For me personally, Super Bowl commercials don’t get much better than the absolutely ridiculous “Smaht Park.”
Smaht Pahk is, to put it quite simply, an experience. It’s the type of commercial that feels like a sitcom. Maybe it is, somewhere—perhaps in a different universe where the sun always shines and everything is perfect. I think what works most for me is, obviously, the casting. I never knew I had such a need for John Krasinski, Rachel Dratch and Chris Evans arguing with each other over the self-guiding abilities of a Hyundai Sonata in hilariously overexaggerated Boston accents. Plus…Rachel’s “this is a ghost car” line really made my night.
Kristina Martin, Communications Manager
Typically, I am one to go for the funny commercials, like “Before Alexa” by Amazon and “Jason Momoa” by Rocket Mortgage, but this year funny paled in comparison to New York Life Insurance’s “Love Takes Action.”
The beginning the commercial’s scenery, lighting, cleanliness and transitions invoke a feeling of closeness and simplicity, the feelings that come with the first three kinds of love: philia, storge and eros. Then there is a shift, the scenes become heavy and the narrator begins speaking of the most admirable kind of love, agape, a selfless love requiring one to give of their being for the betterment of someone else’s.
Did this commercial overcome me with intense feelings and cause me to shed a tear? Yes. Will I be switching to New York Life Insurance? No, but I appreciate the commercial and the message it sends.
Michelle Rash, Vice President
As the mother of a daughter who dreams of being an aerospace engineer, I personally appreciated and was touched by Olay’s “Make Space for Women” commercial. However, my favorite commercial of the night was Jeep’s “Groundhog Day” commercial.
I loved that Jeep took advantage of the timing of the game, on Feb. 2, and the premise of this movie to have a little fun. While it has been years since I have seen the movie “Groundhog Day,” the plot is certainly memorable, and offers a unique chance to highlight the many uses and functions of the Jeep. I loved this new approach and watching Bill Murray, and his furry buddy, exploring the world from the front seat, while keeping the same comedic edge the original movie offered.
Greg Monroy, Creative Director
I’m not sure I can pick a favorite OR a worst. This year it seemed like no one had any really great ideas. The consensus seemed to be, throw everything you can into it. The numerous ads with multiple brands didn’t seem to be a win for any of them. If anything I was just reminded how few companies own everything we consume. I’m honestly surprised you can’t buy Cool Ranch Tide™. If I had to pick a couple I enjoyed I’d have to say the Pringles Rick and Morty commercial because it was completely unhinged. Or the Porsche commercial which was whatever but it included what appeared to be a 906 in the Gulf livery. It’s the simple things that get me.
If I can mention one other thing that caught my attention it would be the Olay and the Michelob Ultra commercials that provided a way to donate to a good cause. That was probably the smartest advertising I saw the whole game.