Now that every one has seen the Super Bowl ads, they all have an opinion on them. A mix amoung the masses it seems. Netscape has a poll on your favorite Super Bowl ad...topping their list is Budweiser's Zebra Ref, followed by Terry Tate Office Linebacker by Reebok and Bud Lite Upside Down Clown. Most main stream media sites have a poll of some kind. It's interesting to note that it's not always the same ad in the top spot.
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Here's some commentary from the media:
Advertisers stick with humor- "Super Bowl advertisers hewed to humor for the most part Sunday night, offering viewers plenty of ridiculous reasons to giggle between plays on the field."
In Less-Than-Giddy Times, Super Bowl Advertisers Stick With the Funny-"Advertising's auteurs kept it quirky on Super Bowl Sunday, with humor a prime ingredient in most commercials as Americans weary of war talk and a gloomy economy were given a chance to chuckle."
Ads score big with laughs- “We just feel that this year, given what’s going on in the economy and in the environment in general, that a more respectful point of view and approach of job search is what’s needed," said Marc Karasu, HotJobs’ vice president of advertising."
Super Bowl Ads Score with Laughs but Fail to Dazzle - "I'd say it was a major disappointment, and we really needed the fun," said Mark DiMassimo, president of New York-based DiMassimo Brand Advertising. The Super Bowl has historically been a forum for advertisers to break new creative ground, or to coin phrases that are traded around the water cooler the next day, but this year's ads did neither, DiMassimo said."
Ads on Super Bowl XXXVII Back to Basics-"The heavy-handed patriotism of last year was largely absent, unless you count Levi's surreal teen trip to the days of America's buffalo stampedes or MasterCard's dull revival of dead presidents. This year, many Super Bowl advertisers went back to basics: the fun of the game, of beer and of celebrity endorsers."
Creative commentary by Barbara Lippert: A Little Bit Rock and Roll- "...several other advertisers went dreamy and surreal enough to make Sigmund Freud proud: time travel during a long train journey (Cadillac), tours of empty, timeless city streets with and without bison (Levi's), and metaphysical fighting with time and youth itself (Gatorade). "
Bud Bowl: Beer ads dominate (includes which quarters ads aired)-"Celine Dion is next, with one of her new Chrysler spots. We found this spot lacking a week ago. It still doesn't register much, unless you like to hear Dion singing."
Anheuser-Busch's 'Replay' is top Super Bowl ad- "For the fifth year running, Anheuser-Busch had the No. 1 ad in USA TODAY's exclusive Ad Meter real-time consumer ranking of the top Super Bowl commercials. The ad substituted a real zebra for a football "zebra.""
Ads failed to bowl over America- "In a year in which violence abounded and the humour was particularly crass - veering towards the mean-spirited, the viewing public seems more drawn towards gentler humour, and better-known celebrities. But sexism was as ubiquitous as cute animals, catering for the twin tastes of Joe Sixpack and the great American hinterland between the two coasts."
As usual, only some ads on the money- "Visa, in a commercial that reminded me of Bud's "Wasssssup!" franchise, featured Chinese NBA rookie Yao Ming in a New York pawn shop. The language-barrier issues made for a fun look. And Yogi Berra provided the right exclamation point. Yao. Yo. Yogi."
Super Bowl ads: Funny, but familiar- "The Reebok commercial featuring Terry Tate, a fictional 300 lb. linebacker who brutally tackles slacker office workers, had more energy than most of the other ads and was funny in a “ooh, that’s gotta hurt,” way. The violence is cartoonish, so it’s not going to make anyone smash their co-workers to the ground. But why the linebacker would make anyone want to buy Reebok products is unclear, unless it’s to be able to run away from him faster."
Super Bowl ads offer litte surprise, creativity- "The best ads came from Anheuser-Busch, the biggest buyer of advertising time with 11 spots. Nothing in its series of funny little commercials broke any ground, pushed any envelopes or invoked the kinds of cliches that measure the success of ads. But they were consistently effective in making viewers smile at the mention of the words "Bud Light.""
Super Bowl Ads Better Than The Game- " This year's Super Bowl commercials were better than the game, but maybe that's not saying much. Hey, what happened to all those hip dotcom ads, you know, the ones where Company A put every cent it had into a 30-second Super Bowl spot, leaving no money to actually run the company?(No need to answer; it's a rhetorical question.)"
Super Bowl ads: Which scored, and which failed?- "Humor was the hook for the best of the ads, as it always is. But perhaps it's indicative of the troubled economic times that, overall, yesterday's spots didn't have the surprising bite we've come to expect on Super Bowl Sunday. Even the cleverest seemed to embrace the familiar."
Super Bowl ads play it safe- " Low-brow, slap-stick comedy carried much of the night, from an ad for Trident that starred a bloodthirsty squirrel to a trio of body-humor Bud Light ads."
Super Bowl ads were quirky-" Big-budget movies played their usual role, with Arnold Schwarzenegger on hand to tout his summer action flick, Terminator 3, and Warner Brothers offering many viewers their first peeks of the two new Matrix movies scheduled to be released this year."
Super Bowl ads strike funny bone- "The splashiest commercials typically air earlier in the game, which fit well with listless offense through much of the first half."
Super Bowl ads pitch power to the people- "Instead, commercial appeals were wrapped in the ordinary — even when the product was expensive. The downside of this approach is that the ordinary too often was dull. Like TV networks, which this season took a cautious approach to shows based on some notion that 9/11 destroyed our appetites for edginess, advertisers went for the safely amusing and determinedly nonoffensive."
Super Bowl as Ed Sullivan Show- " It wasn't a tour de force, exactly. Glaringly in short supply was the visual storytelling the event best serves. Super Bowl Sunday is all about commotion. Ads that contribute to the din are at a disadvantage vs. the ones that draw the story out and the viewer in. Still, what most distinguished the 2003 Super Bowl was the observance of advertising values, not just entertainment and production ones; most of the ads had embedded within them strong selling messages, and the rest mainly were brand-building enough to fill in the gap."
Advertising at the Super Bowl- A list of old articles on pre-Super Bowl buzz.
The good, the bad and the empty on Super Sunday- "The Budweiser Zebra spot. A cowboy saying the word "zebra" is funny. That's fundamental. Add to that the dig at NFL officiating, some lovely atmospheric photography, and an edge-of-your-seats, one or two-hoofs-in sideline call and we're talking gold. Best spot of the night."
Operation Infinite Ads- "We're going to plunge in headfirst by offering you reviews of the ads and in-depth analysis of the commercials' cultural significance...But most importantly, Flak will also explore whether any given ad can succeed where President Bush's economic team has failed and rescue our nation's failing economy."
Non-main stream media opinions:
Spot By Spot Superbowl Ad Thoughts- "All in all, I think it was a poor showing this year. No real standouts. The only standout didn't even run during Superbowl. It ran during Alias after the game. The spot? Yes, the Miller Lite Catfight spot."
Why were the Super Bowl ads so dull?- "Lighten up, folks. It's the Super Bowl, not Masterpiece Theater. It's not just the AFC-NFC Championship, it the championship of low-brow pandering. Might as well enjoy it."
John-Q-Public have their say- " Only slightly higher up the food chain was the "Huh?" factor - otherwise known as "You're confusing creative with effective" These ads were more confusing than memorable, and so clearly driven by agency creatives, rather than anyone with a business sense. These ads may have been intended to be humorous, but in so doing not only did they fail to promote their brands, but more likely to have damaged the brand by mixing their messages."
Some thoughts on ads from the introspection weblog- "Levi's/buffalo. Wasted its massive potential because it ultimately didn't make much sense. The tear streaking across the girl's face in the breeze of the stampeding bison was a beautiful touch, though."
Super Bowl ad takes- "Explanation of methodology -- totally subjective, fairly moderate drinking (martinis, gin and tonics and beer) starting about 4:30 pm. Overall impression -- not a particularly great year. Only one really jumped out at me. There were some that made me smile, but only one made me laugh."
If you know of a place with some good commentary/opinions/etc on the Super Bowl ads not listed here, leave a link in the comments for us.