2018 Super Bowl Ads: Super Duper or Just Dilly Dilly?

On average, NBC charged a whopping $5 million plus for each 30-second Super Bowl ad this year. That cost doesn’t even include the production expenses to produce the spot. Most of these dollars were spent on flawless creative and execution – while others not so much. Spots were filled with lip sync battles, brand mash-ups, over-the-top story lines, pop-culture artists, like rapper Cardi B, and plenty of storytelling to go around.

Here’s an overview of the top five Super Bowl Ads this year (and apparently, Ad Age agrees).

  1. Alexa

Alexa might have lost her voice, but she helped everyone else find theirs when it was named best overall spot and most entertaining  via Morning Consult.  What’s not to love about the well-executed spot racked with celebrities like Gordon Ramsay, Rebel Wilson and Anthony Hopkins? We could go on with compliments, but we’re too busy wondering (with the rest of the world) if Austin is the new location of Amazon’s second headquarters?

  1. Tide

It’s a Tide Ad took second best overall spot, and it’s pretty clear why. We think their point was well-made and memorable the first time. So, we’re not really sure why they decided to spend $10 million to run three more, totaling 90 seconds of air time. Isn’t it about quality over quantity? If you’re Tide, we guess not. Will it help prevent people from eating (or wanting to eat) Tide pods? Stranger things have happened.

  1. Tourism Australia

And then you have Tourism Australia. Aside from sucking in Crocodile Dundee fans, it reminded everyone of two things:  1. That movie-trailer appeal is a thing; and 2. That you actually can – and should  vacation in Australia and have a good time doing it. This is the type of spot that pulls you in from the very beginning and doesn’t let go until the end frame (even in a crowded room where your family is still arguing at an alarming decibel over the last re-play).

  1. NFL

And to the surprise of Dirty Dancing fans everywhere, nobody puts NFL in the corner during the Super Bowl – not even Tide (because honestly, there’s nothing clean about Dirty Dancing) … Except for maybe Eli Manning and Odell Beckham Jr.’s perfectly executed lift. This spot has us dying to know how rehearsals went.  We couldn’t think of a better way to call attention to the NFL’s new rules on end-zone celebrations.

  1. Budweiser

Our nation’s heart grows fonder of Budweiser every Super Bowl. And after seeing their heartfelt Stand By You spot, we’re reminded that America’s beloved beer brand actually does care. We spent a few minutes admiring how the spot features all employees and no actors while offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the plant. Then we remembered that we don’t drink Budweiser.

A Little Lagniappe

Though the Doritos and Mountain Dew lip-synch mash up landed the sixth most entertaining spot, we’re still scratching our heads. A Dorito’s commercial is the last place we expected to find Game of Thrones character Tyrion Lannister, a man whose wit well surpasses his height. Even though it wasn’t Game of Thrones, we got a little Tyrian to tide us over until the season 8 premiere in 2019.

As corny as Bud Light’s Ye Olde Pep Talk and Bud Knight duo was, it had us talking about it the Monday morning after the Super Bowl. We have to give props to Wieden & Kennedy for its uniqueness.

We see what you did there, Jeep. Their Anti-Manifesto spot was straight-to-the point with no fluff, which we found to be attractive and refreshing amidst a sea of over-the-top ads.

As much as we enjoyed hearing Martin Luther King Jr.’s powerful speech from 1963 (that basically changed the world) during Ram’s Built To Serve spot, its sentiment was sadly lost when images of Ram trucks started to appear. The comparison they tried to make is somewhat cringe-worthy.

As much as we love Danny DeVito,  we definitely wouldn’t want to eat him. And after seeing the M&Ms Human spot by BBDO New York, we think we might have lost our appetite altogether.

We’d love to hear your thoughts or what your favorite Super Bowl ad was. Comment below and let us know!