Watch The Superbowl For Commercials?
1. Mean Joe Greene [Coca Cola, 1979] We’ll ignore the fact that the legendary ad didn’t actually debut during the Super Bowl — it came a few months before — because it’s easily one of the most iconic commercials ever made. How many times have you grabbed a drink after a tough practice or gym session and thrown your sweaty shirt to one of your buddies, a la Mean Joe? Hey kid, catch.
2. 1984 [Apple, 1984]: It’s tough to imagine a world in which Apple doesn’t have a vice-like grip on our gadgets (or our lives) but in the early 80s, the company wasn’t yet the behemoth it is now. That all changed when the Macintosh was introduced with this stirring anti-Big Brother ad, which Advertising Age named Commercial of the Decade. And yes, the whole thing is seething with irony in 2011.
3. Showdown [McDonald’s, 1993] Pair two of basketball’s all-time greats (Michael Jordan and Larry Bird) and give them the task of out-shooting each other in an increasingly preposterous game of H.O.R.S.E., and you’ve got an instant classic that belongs on any list of the greatest sports commercials ever. This one just happened to be plugging the Big Mac.
4. Apartment 10G [Pepsi, 1987] Michael J. Fox goes to great lengths — jetting out of a fire escape, dodging past speeding cars, running through the pouring rain — to get his hot new neighbor a can of Diet Pepsi. It reminded us that guys will do pretty much anything if there’s a cute girl involved.
5. Frogs [Budweiser, 1995] It only took three frogs named Bud, Weis, and Er to launch the beer brand (along with the concept of talking reptiles) into the stratosphere of Super Bowl advertising. We could fill the entire list with Bud commercials, but if we have to pick a favorite, we’ll go with the one that’s still the easiest to quote. (We’re purposely blocking “Wassup” from our memories.)
6. When I Grow Up [Monster.com, 1999] The notorious clip posited that kids don’t want to be astronauts when they grow up — they instead want to climb their way up to middle management, be replaced on a whim, and be forced into early retirement. Talk about bleak. The sad thing is, those options don’t sound so bad today.
7. Talking Stain [Tide, 2008] Though the talking stain didn’t catch on quite like we (or Tide) had hoped, this commercial is still all kinds of hilarious. Plus, we now know not to spill any more sauce on our shirts. If we do, it will learn how to speak Spanish backwards, and that’s just a major hassle.
8. Baby [E-Trade, 2008] By now the E-Trade talking baby is played out — sorry little guy! — but a couple of years ago, we couldn’t resist him. The little bit of puke that dribbles out of his mouth after he (figuratively) spews adult mumbo jumbo about investing in stocks is a work of genius.
9. Betty White [Snickers, 2010] We’re still not sure we get the point of the whole Betty White phenomenon, but we can trace its origins back to this inspired commercial that also featured lovable octogenarian Abe Vigoda playing a vicious game of backyard football. Old people putting themselves through physical pain = never not funny.
10. Mosquito [Tabasco, 1998] There are three things we can take from this timeless clip: 1. CGI has come a long way since ’98. 2. Tabasco’s probably a whole lot safer — and tastier — than regular, chemical-infused bug spray. 3. Who the hell puts Tabasco on their pizza? And why haven’t we tried it yet?
via Pulse of Radio.