Monday, February 04, 2013

Thank goodness there was a good football game sandwiched in among last night's commercials

Granted, the game lasted for what seemed like forever -- the power outage surely did not help -- but the 49ers had a chance to win the game in the last two minutes -- and I agree with Coach Jim Harbaugh that his receiver was interfered with. Interference? It looked more like a mugging. "A good no-call," said one of the announcers, charitably, because, he said, the receiver was pushing off, too. Pushing off? He was trying to escape a hold that would have been called a Crusher Crunch or something in the WWE. But I don't know if the pass could have been caught in bounds. It looked to be on a rising trajectory as it, and San Francisco's chances, sailed away.

The commercials that stretched the game out forever are often the highlight of a Super Bowl broadcast.

This year, however, the commercials were about as weak as I can remember. (Yes, that's a link what appears to be all of them.)

Last night's commercials were not weak because they weren't elaborate, but because they were. In general, there was too much of a muchness about last night's commercials -- and most of the overdone productions were, as Ken Levine calls them this morning, "mini-Ishtars."

Of the big productions numbers, only this Oreo commercial made me laugh:

I don't remember commercials touting commercials in years past. This year, there were commercials in the interminable pre-game trying to set us up for the 'real' commercials yet to come. A very elaborate VW pre-game commercial ended up with a Jamaican driving away from a fantasy menagerie to the theme of the old Partridge Family TV show.

I expected something similar when the 'real' commercial aired -- and, so, I almost missed the little office drama with the white guy (from Minnesota) talking like he was pitching Red Stripe beer. I read online that the Jamaican Minister of Tourism liked the spot and is trying to figure out a way to capitalize on it for tourism in his country. If the Jamaicans don't mind the commercial, I guess we needn't get too upset about it, right?

But while I didn't think it 'racist,' I also didn't think it was very good. It did use the Partridge Family theme again. Why?

Another controversial commercial was the 'prom' spot for Audi:

Some felt that this commercial glorified an assault on the prom queen. I didn't see it that way -- I imagined a different backstory, something about their prior friendship, but he's a nerd and she's a cheerleader and she felt pressured to go out with the captain of the football team who was a violent lout and mean to her anyway.

But, look, do you really want a car that can make you lose your inhibitions and endanger yourself? Sort of like the Pepsi Next commercial with the parents coming home unexpectedly to a house party run amuck. Yes, says the son, but we weren't drinking anything but Pepsi Next. So who cares? The house has been destroyed. If Pepsi Next is the drink of vandals or inspires mob action, do you really want that in your fridge?

A rule of thumb in prior Super Bowls was that the car ads generally were the worst. Not last night... the 'Space Babies' ad for Kia was overmuch, but it ended well. The Hyundai Turbo ad was amusing.

But they come off particularly well mostly by comparison with the awful Doritos ad about the goat, or the aforementioned ad for Pepsi Next.

The Amy Poehler Best Buy ad was a little creepy. The Speed Stick laundromat ad was a little more creepy. But, of course, was the creepiest of all, in my opinion, with Bar Refaeli loudly 'swapping spit' with a pudgy, nerdy guy, played by actor Jesse Heiman. It was supposed to represent the meeting of 'sexy' and 'smart.' It was just... noisy.

That's my review of last night's action -- but I admit I didn't bet a single penny on the game. I'm not certain whether that admission might not be devastating to my credibility (I might as well grow a beard and become an anarchist). So what's your take on the best and worst of last night's marketing extravaganzas? Leave a comment.

1 comment:

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

well of course i didn't see any of them or the game (what game?) as you know but i did have a lovely evening watching downton abbey!

smiles, bee