The Best (and Worst) Commercials of Super Bowl 2018

The Super Bowl is one of the biggest events of the year for those of us in the United States, and it’s easy to see why; it’s hard not to love anything that combines football, beer, and over-the-top musical entertainment. But for us advertising people, it’s the commercials that get our blood pumping. According to Sports Illustrated writer Richard Deitsch, a 30 second commercial costs about 5 million dollars to be played during the Super Bowl game. With that much money on the line, companies bring out the big guns, each trying to outdo each other for the funniest, most emotional, most outlandish, or most memorable commercial. Take a look at some of our favorite commercials from the 2018 Super Bowl.

Who Got It Right

Alexa Loses Her Voice

Innovative and comical, Alexa comes in as my personal favorite commercial of the Super Bowl. It took fresh but recognizable celebrities, combined it with humor, and won the day. Who wouldn’t want Gordon Ramsey’s insults to stream through your home?

It’s a Tide Ad

We love brands that are able to poke some fun at themselves like Tide did in this outrageous ad. What is up with those abstract perfume commercials, anyway? It took all those commercial clichés and turned them on their heads. Laundry detergent has never been so amusing.

Budweiser “Stand By You” Campaign

Budweiser hit us hard in the feels with this socially aware ad. The commercial shows Budweiser’s efforts to send clean drinking water around the country in response to the natural disasters that shook United States’ communities. According to Budweiser, they have helped provide more than 7.3 million gallons of water to cities in need and intend on expanding their Water Donation Program in 2018. With “Stand By Me” playing in the background, this heartwarming ad won’t be easily forgotten.

Doritos Blaze #SpitFire and Mountain Dew #IceCold 

Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage in an epic rap battle with a possible nod to Game of Thrones “A Song of Ice and Fire”? Sign me up. It doesn’t necessarily make all that much sense (like where does the Morgan Freeman casting come from? Wouldn’t a White Walker character be more fitting?) but boy is it entertaining.


Coke “The Wonder of Us”

We recently published a blog post about how it is becoming increasingly important for brands to be inclusive, and Coke is definitely not missing the mark. Their commercial features a poem explaining that Coke is for everyone, and received positive feedback from audiences about their nod to gender neutrality. It is not a far cry from Coke’s 2017 ad “America the Beautiful” that celebrated racial diversity.


Who Missed The Mark

Jeep Wrangler “Anti Manifesto”

At first glance, the Jeep Wrangler ad is a hit: it’s a compelling shot with stellar production quality and dismisses the need for tons of copy. It’s a simple take of a Jeep trekking through water, showing the strength and capabilities of the vehicle. In short, it shows a Jeep doing what a Jeep does best: drive. That is what the company argues, anyway.

However, the implications of the ad are somewhat controversial. Chris Wood, President and CEO of Trout Unlimited, calls out Jeep Wrangler for being environmentally irresponsible. “They drove right up the middle of the stream, they effectively reamed the stream and glorified it,” Wood said. “It is about the worst thing you can do to a stream.”

According to Wood, such activity is disruptive to wildlife and disturbs sediments and breeding patterns. To be fair, there is a small disclaimer on the ad that it was shot in man-made water, but Wood still publicly denounces the commercial and argues it glorifies the activity. It just goes to show that even the best ad can be a miss if one fails to analyze the consequences.

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