The time is upon us once again – the day after the Super Bowl. Bellies full on nachos, talk about the halftime performance (Missy Elliot, eh?), and the winners and losers of not just the big game but of the commercials as well.

Tim’s Take

BestBudweiser “Lost Puppy”
Thoughts: As much as it pains me to choose the clear front runner (such a front runner that GoDaddy sniffed it out and spoofed it before the game) the commercial is the ultimate package. The one thing Budweiser always knows how to do is reenforce its brand’s icons, which are clearly the Clydesdales, and recently golden puppies. This is a double win; they play to the brand and play to the hearts of millions Americans, male & female alike. Everyone knows it’s coming, yet we always fall for it, share it on social media, and talk about it for days.

WorstNationwide “Make Safe Happen”
Thoughts: While I believe the message is worthwhile, the Superbowl is a rough venue to air a serious and heart wrenching commercial of that subject matter. I find it hard to believe that they ran a focus group or multiple focus groups and didn’t find a negative reaction was coming. If it needs to be aired, at least end it with a 3 second message from a spokesperson rather than just a logo for an insurance company, which either distracts or overshadows the original message.


Mike’s Take

Best: Budweiser “Brewed the Hard Way”
Thoughts: As this is one of a few commercials that caused some huff n’ puff in the social sphere, it stood out to me.  Clearly, Budweiser and its following has no sense around well crafted microbrews and that competition is not going anywhere anytime soon. So what did they do? They chose to take the leap, choose a demographic and not worry about how many people they pissed off along the way. I respect a business that can do that. It was the right choice.

WorstDoritos “When Pigs Fly”
Thoughts: This commercial seemed to be done with a decent CGI budget off of a poor script.  Too much has been done with the cliche “When Pigs Fly” and they did nothing to stand out amongst the crowd.  The only thing they did well was answer my concern to assure that the pig was a-OK at the end.  #Dontbeadick next year Doritos.


Tommy’s Take

BestClash of Clans: Revenge
Thoughts: Even if this was one of what seemed like countless apps with Super Bowl ads this year, this one was really funny. I also like to imagine Liam Neeson actually monologues to himself in coffee shops like that.

WorstBudweiser “Brewed the Hard Way”
Thoughts: I can’t decide if Budweiser is overly arrogant or extremely desperate in this ad that attacks craft beer drinkers. “The people who drink our beer are the people who like to drink beer” made me laugh out loud in disgust. I drank several more Saranac’s in protest after seeing this ad.


John’s Take

BestBudweiser “Lost Puppy”
Thoughts: I want to preface this by saying I know that I’m weak. The Budweiser puppy commercial was too cute and I loved it. The wolf was scary and the puppy was adorable and brave. I love puppies.

Notable MentionAlways “Like a Girl”
Thoughts: Positive, well delivered. It was very relevant to some of today’s social issues.

WorstNationwide “Make Safe Happen”
Thoughts: This Nationwide commercial was about as good of an idea as throwing the ball on the half yard line. The beginning of the commercial has a very nice tone before abruptly tackling a tragic topic. While it provided shock value and is getting plenty of media coverage, it didn’t deliver the message that it intended to.

After watching their full commercial on the “Make Safe Happen” website, I think that the content from the 0:38 – 1:25 would have been a better use of their 47 seconds of airtime. While it may not be shocking, it explains what the “Make Safe Happen” campaign is, how to get more information about child safety and preventative measures.

Worst Runner-UpMercedes-Benz “Fable”
Thoughts: This commercial was lame. If someone asked me to come up with a Super Bowl commercial for Mercedes involving a tortoise and a hare, that would be my first idea, which isn’t saying much about the commercial.


Josh’s Take

BestSnickers “The Brady Bunch”
Thoughts: Danny Trejo and Steve Buscemi. That’s basically it. I like that they clearly took original Brady Bunch footage and incorporated it with the Trejo/Buscemi stuff. They’re both such cult movie heroes, if you put them in anything it’s going to be solid.

WorstNationwide “Make Safe Happen”
Thoughts:  I know it’s the obvious choice, but this ad really was in poor taste. They could have achieved the same message, just as effectively, without showing the tub, cleaning supplies, and the fallen TV. I can’t imagine how that ad may have completely derailed someones game/party/day/week/month/year if one of those situations had actually happened to them in the past, or if they lost a child at all.


Katie’s Take

BestAlways “Like a Girl”
Thoughts: When I first saw this ad I was immediately aggravated at the fact that this is how people portrayed the phrase “like a girl”. As a girl who strives to be independent, strong, and successful, I’ve always felt a personal duty to try and be a good influence for not only young girls, but women as well.

When they ask the boy if he felt he insulted his sister, with a mild stutter he didn’t think he insulted his sister, but admits he insulted girls. This stood out because we would never dare insult one of our own, but wouldn’t think twice about insulting those we don’t know.

Always brought a light of awareness that isn’t always seen in a respectable, tactful way.

Notable MentionBudweiser “Lost Puppy”
Thoughts: A classic Budweiser commercial. Budweiser was able to make a 30-second masterpiece. Their secret weapon? The most adorable puppy ever. But really, what puppy isn’t adorable?

WorstNationwide “Make Safe Happen”
Thoughts:  What a buzzkill. Nationwide – you should have picked a different time to air this ad. Although I agree people should pay a little bit more attention to the surroundings around their kids, I don’t agree that this was the time to air this ad. On one note,the message was clear – these accidents don’t have to happen, but how exactly is Nationwide going to help?

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