by Gwynn Van Houten
Let’s face it: whether football is your cup of tea or not, the Super Bowl is irrefutably a national holiday. According to Statista, an online statistics portal, at least 114.4 million people watched the Super Bowl last year — that’s more than a third of the total U.S. population. It’s for this reason that marketing managers put ample time, money, and effort into making their company’s commercials as memorable as can be during Super Bowl season. The results can be hysterical, moving, or downright bizarre. Here’s just a few fan favorites from past years.
1. Budweiser – Lost Dog (2015)
This list wouldn’t be legit without one of Budweiser’s famously adorable animal ads. This one, starring a puppy and the lager company’s iconic Clydesdales, is an epic story of friendship.
2. Doritos – Magic Ball (2009)
Please don’t do this in real life.
3. Apple – 1984 (1984)
If you’re familiar with George Orwell’s 1984, you have a pretty good idea of the kind of ideological horrors people thought the future might hold. Apple promised to prevent such monotony from ever happening when they released the first Macintosh computer that very year.
4. Coca-Cola – Hey Kid, Catch! (1979)
Former Steelers defensive tackle “Mean” Joe Greene showed us his soft side in this encounter with a young fan. Fun fact: Greene and the kid in this commercial had a reunion this year.
5. Volkswagen – The Force (2011)
It’s pretty cute when a kid tries to act like his favorite character. It’s even cuter when he thinks he’s getting good at it. Parenting done right.
6. FedEx – Alien (2004)
This Jenkins guy seems pretty down-to-earth.
7. Ameriquest – Surprise Dinner (2005)
A guy prepares a pleasant dinner for his wife. She sees something else.
8. Bridgestone – Reply All (2011)
Never before has an advertisement captured sheer panic so well.
9. PepsiCo – Bob’s House (2008)
This commercial from PepsiCo’s EnAble, the company’s research network for employees with different abilities, is a representation of a common joke among deaf people.
10. EDS – Cat Herders (2000)
Can cat herding be a thing? It really should be.
11. Reebok – Terry Tate: Office Linebacker (2003)
One in a series of commercials made for Reebok. Honestly, this seems like a good idea. Mind visiting a high school classroom sometime, Terry?
12. Monster.com – When I Grow Up (1999)
An ad about kids sharing what they want to be when they grow up should be precious, but this time, it’s a punch in the gut.
13. Google – Parisian Love (2010)
If you haven’t said “d’aww” enough today already, this one should just about do it.
14. Ram – Farmer (2013)
This powerful commercial, featuring Paul Harvey’s famous 1978 speech, pays homage to America’s underappreciated heroes.
15. Old Spice – The Man Your Man Could Smell Like (2010)
This post is now diamonds.