February 3, 2011

10 All-time Super Bowl Commercials we Love (+ 10 we don’t). ~Joe Yeoman

Photo Courtesy of Jason Defra

Update. This is from last year. Any horrible/great ones we should add to the list? Let us know, and we’ll do so. ~ ed.


The Super Bowl, the world’s greatest holiday, is bearing down on us and we’re about to get sacked.

As a countdown, I will be supplying you, Mindful America, with daily blasts about the NFL, parties, and the Super Bowl itself, which we’ll live blog and tweet here in Boulder from a big solar power company (of course) where we’ll be watching The Game.

Here are a few other recent Elephant articles that you may enjoy:

Five Reasons to Avoid the SB. Five Reasons to Indulge. Yoga and Football. The Bro Code. Destroy Ben Roethlisberger. Food.  Enjoy! ~ Joe Yeoman

For this Super Bowl, ad prices have dropped half-a-million dollars—down to $2.5 million dollars per 30 second spot. Score!

Watching commercials is, for many people, almost as fun as the game itself. If a company’s commercial is a touchdown, then said company will stand out in the 42 minutes of overall ad time. Millions of people will see the product, and then for several days consumers will check out the videos on YouTube. If the commercial is a flop, then the company will have wasted millions of dollars and tons of resources.

Here at Elephant, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite (and least favorite) ads. Enjoy:

10 we love:

1. Green Police.


As we explained last year, this ad promotes green technologies in a fun way that makes fun of greenies yet is educational yet ably hawks said product. Personally, I could see Waylon writing the script or directing this project. I really think it is a special car commercial.

2. Terry Tate.

This is one of my personal favorites because I think that it does a good job on poking fun at football and the workplace. As a negative, it does promote aggression, but at least, it does it in a non-offensive way.

3. Cat Herders.

Parodying an American Stereotype. Check. Ridiculous Premise. Check. Kittens. Double Check.

4. When I Grow Up.

When I was a child, I wanted to be a dinosaur. Instead, I ended up an Elephant.

5. Jordan vs. Bird.


While McDonald’s is one of my least favorite companies, and I hate fast food, this is a classic competition between two of the world’s best basketball players.

6. Conan hits Time Square.


As far as beer commercials go, this one is the most creative. Conan O’Brien can do no wrong.

7. Mean Joe Green has a heart.

It’s nice to see that some football players have a heart. (You also have to respect one of the most classic commercials of all time, especially since this was Coke made with sugar).

8. 1984.

Fighting the institution = cool. Becoming the institution = ironic.

9. Castaway.


At least with all the pollution the carrier industry creates, this one has a fun ending. Plus being stranded on an abandoned island is a good way to cut down on your carbon foot print.

10. Sack the Golden Girl.


As a fan of the Golden Girls, I love everything Betty White. I don’t care that this commercials stereotypes weaker men as women; I only care about my love for Betty.

10 we…don’t like.

1. Waste.

This ad is a complete waste of time, money, energy, resources, and my time. Is this what we think of another species? Are primates only for our amusement?

3. Pigeons! Attack!

Celebrating the industrial-military complex is not cool. Top Gun! is also an awful movie.

4. Frogs.

Budweiser is made from GMO rice, and it isn’t even an American company any more. Also, this commercial lacks any imagination or production value. Thumbs down.

5. Cat Fight.

Man, is this misogynistic and stereotypical or what?

6. Remake.

1. I hate remakes; they’re just lazy. 2. This remake includes the Corn-Syrup Coke compared to the sugar version. Just like Polamalu is no Mean Joe, New Coke is no Original Coke.

7. Crawford.


Just like the Cat Fight, Pepsi uses her body to sell their product (which has nothing to do with sex).  Also, the two images of Crawford and Polamalu drinking are the same. I’m glad to see that marketing hasn’t changed in years.

8. I’d “Cream” me.

It’s awkward to watch her “cream” Namath. Not sexy at all and pretty misogynistic.

9. Man Stuff.


Why can’t two men accidentally kiss without it being weird? Commercials like this reinforce awful stereotypes.

10. Most offensive.

If PETA porn was banned from the Super Bowl, then how the fcuk did this one make it on the air? I find this so offensive.

Bonus…Racist Much?

I can’t believe someone paid millions to put this on the air.

Enjoy the game, and what happens in between!

Joe Yeoman loves you. He is an MFA candidate at the Jack Kerouac School. As a displaced Chicago writer and editor, he hopes to see the Windy City soon.  You can contact him at Joeyeoman [at] gmail [dot] com.

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