It is this time of year again, while I might change my mind on which ones are the top five worst super bowl ads of all time and the the oft forgotten superbowl ad gems may soon include new ads, while the New York Times & Adland pick of most memorable ad each year until 2008 is getting outdated, I thought I'd kick this year off by reminding of the superbowl moments you can't forget and those you shouldn't forget.
Fart jokes & dividers.
E*Trade - "Money Coming Out the Wazoo"
Back in 2000 superbowl xxxiv money was indeed spent like crazy before the bubble burst, but E*trade survived the crash and presumably so did their customers, which they gloated with in this ad. Thank god they didn't show us what it looked like. ;)
McDonald's - Larry Bird / Michael Jordan - "The Showdown"
During the 1993 superbowl XXVII Larry Bird & Michael Jordan competed over Big macs by doing impossible goals - a feat that they had to repeat one year later in the 1994 super bowl XXVIII as people still hadn't stopped saying "...through the window, off the floor, nothing but net." Like most sequels, the 1994 ad was terrible and no amount of Charles Barkley could save it.
Reebok - Terry Tate - Office Linebacker
The office linebacker tackled everyone in 2003 super bowl XXXVII and had audiences divided on whether it was funny or crap. The ad may or may not stay with you, but what you want to forget is what "Felcher", the name of the company, really means. If you google it, please don't blame me for your gag reflex.
Bud Light - Sleigh ride
Staying on the juvenile jokes theme, Budweiser's potty humor in super bowl XXXVIII 2004 won the popular vote with the viewing public that year, and still carries a dismal 1.7 hearts rating here. We are still not amused.
Bud Light Parade / Clown suit
Seems that 2003 super bowl XXXVII was full of odd below-the-belt jokes. Remember that upside down clown, and what he looked like drinking a bud? *shudder* Yeah, I wanted to forget that, but then they made it all worse by suggesting hot dogs. Someone please Brillo my brain.
Bugle Boys - The Go-Gos
In the 1991 super bowl XXV The Go-Go's said buh-bye to their careers and hello to becoming a pop-culture punchline forever. Nothing sums up the early nineties quite as much as this ad does, it's got it all. Including the beat!
In the super bowl XXXII 1998 Fedex made the greatest commercial in the superbowl career, by not making a commercial at all. Sort of. When people get exited about the always creative Fedex commercials, that up until this year used to get bigger and crazier, they often forget the biggest impact was made with an incredibly simple idea and no special effects at all. Unless you count the test-pattern as a special effect.
FedEx - We Apologize
Masterlock entered their Super Bowl era with a bang. Also known as the ad which began an era of really tough demonstrations, soon household items would have to endure all sorts of torture such as having pianos dropped on them, get run over by steamrollers and so on. Blame the Miami vs Minnesota game for not being as entertaining as this ad, perhaps, but it started a trend which has lasted until today.
Master Lock - Tough under fire - (1973) super bowl VII commercials
On December 5th, 1973, at a rifle range outside of Los Angeles, a high-powered .30-caliber rifle was fired at a distance of 40 yards, to try to open this Master padlock. …
When the kings of understatement and straightuptedness® advertised during the 1988 super bowl XXII, they employed a bugle player and a did a tiny little unveiling on their table. So understated, so on brand and so very Hal Riney - may he rest in peace.
Bartles & Jaymes - Bugle
In the 1999 super bowl XXXIII Apple Macintosh successfully parodied HAL from 2001, while playing with the then current fear of the Y2K bug. At the end of the 60-second ad all I can do is agree, yes, I like my Macintosh better than you. For some strange reason this ad never ends up on the "top ten best" lists, despite being topical, on brand, and all-around-fab. Too subtle for the fart joke lovers, perhaps.
Apple - Hal (1999)