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The Big Game: Best and Worst Commercials 2020

Another Big Game in the books. Sunday was full of jubilation for some, frustration for others, and one helluva good comeback. But, the Big Game is much more than a bunch of sweaty men playing for a shiny trophy. It’s everything that plays a role in creating the excitement. It’s the ridiculous prop bets you drunkenly made with your roommate, the dozens of high-dollar commercials, and the outrageously extravagant halftime show.

 

The Superb Owl is when brands bring out the big guns and creativity takes flight like an eagle in the jet stream. Unfortunately, this year, creativity soared like an emu. There were a lot of commercials…A LOT OF COMMERCIALS, but only a handful warranted the steep $5.6 million price tag for a 30-second spot. In this blog, we will talk about the Good, the Bad, and the Avocado.

 

An estimated 102,000,000 people watched the Big Game across several channels and streaming services, according to Fox. The game broadcast not only attracts a wide audience, but a diverse audience spanning many demographics and age groups, and women have accounted for at least 40% of Super Bowl viewers. As such, airing a commercial in one of the coveted ad slots can be valuable for advertisers seeking an audience for their products and services. 

 

WASSUP?! Humor has been associated with the Big Game commercials for as long as I can remember. There were a few comedic moments that stuck out above the fog this year. Jeep – Groundhog Day crushed it alongside Hyundai – Smaht Pahk, but others like T-Mobile and Avocados from Mexico crashed it – at least the avocado had a tiny helmet.

Hyundai – Smaht Pahk

An overarching trend this year was to use emotions to convey a more serious message. Thanks to Google, I can now check off ‘crying at a Super Bowl party’ on my list of things I never wanted to happen but did. Turns out, I’m not the only one; thousands of people took to social media to share how they reacted to the saddest commercial in the history of the Big Game. However, Google wasn’t the only one in on the trend – Kia, New York Life, Bloomberg, and Trump all took the serious route. Creating a strong emotional connection with the viewer is always a great way for a commercial to be remembered. 

Google – Loretta

Another big trend this year was to use celebrities. This route can be tricky, however. Using a celebrity for the sake of using a celebrity usually backfires. A celebrity should only be used if their personal brand and your product or service align. Post Malone buying Bud Light in a gas station is a perfect example. It’s not even acting at that point, it’s just Post Malone running errands. On the other hand, Hard Rock tried to cram as many celebrities in their commercial as they possibly could instead of focusing on the Hard Rock brand.

Bud Light – Inside Post’s Brain

The moment you’ve all been waiting for is finally here – the winners of best and worst commercials of 2020’s Big Game. By a landslide, Tide is the champion. It had everything you could want: humor, celebrities, a unique approach, multiple ads, inter-brand advertising, and it even continued on social media platforms. Similarly, by a landslide, Coca-Cola takes home the crown for the worst commercial of 2020. They tried to use humor – failed. They tried to use celebrities – failed. They tried to convince us that Jonah Hill is standing up Martin F****** Scorcese – not buying it. Love it or hate it, these are the facts people.

Tide – Super Bowl Now, Laundry Later
Coca-Cola – Show Up


Disclaimer: You may have noticed that we haven’t used the SB word. That’s because the Proper Name Police are flagging all articles and blogs that reference the Big Game. Here’s a list of all the names I can use: The Big Game, Superb Owl, The Game of Games, Battle of the Pigskin, Puppy Bowl Post-Game Show, Football Con, Last Game Until September, Super Duper Sunday, The Football World Series, and LIV.