To review this year’s Super Bowl ads, I was hoping for an all-expenses paid trip to the States.
I imagined sitting in a sports bar and watching all the adverts play out live amongst the big game. Surely, to be able to write a respectable and fair review, I should only do so from within the context in which they were intended to be consumed?
Alas, I’ve spent the best part of the last two weeks watching for Google alerts as, one by one, the big brands drop their big ads for the big game.
Oh well, maybe next year.
The use of celebrity knows no bounds.
What I have seen though, from the 60-odd commercials that have been released, is that the use of celebrity knows no bounds this year.
And I’m just talking about the celebrities I recognize.
Jim Carrey reprises his role as The Cable Guy for Verizon. Mike Myers reprises his role as Dr Evil, or should I say Dr EV-il, for General Motors new electric vehicle. Seth Rogan and Paul Rudd share some bromance over a bag of Lay’s, while most of the cast of Schitt’s Creek, along with wrestler-turned-actor, Dave Bautista, feature in Nissan’s action film inspired advert.
Pepsi has every rapper from the 1990s, while Uber Eats has ‘Stifler’s Mom’, Jennifer Coolidge, Goop queen Gwyneth Paltrow, Trevor Noah from The Daily Show AND Nicholas Braun from Succession.
Oh, and the Budweiser horse is back with the Budweiser Labrador.
But amongst this star-studded melee there are a few celebrities that really stand out.
Michelob Ultra low-alcohol beer serves up the ‘Superior Bowl’—a ten pin bowling alley run by the ever-cool Steve Buscemi.
A raft of sports stars including American football legend, Peyton Manning and USA Soccer player, Alex Morgan, don their bowling shoes to show each other what they’re really made of.
That is until the queen of the court, Serena Williams, rocks up in the coolest cameo of this year’s Super Bowl.
BMW has Arnold Schwarzenegger playing the Greek god, Zeus, albeit retired to the luscious surroundings of California alongside his goddess wife and sister, Hera, played by Salma Hayek.
I honestly think this is a role Arnie should play properly in a feature film.
He hasn’t looked this comfortable in character since Terminator 2.
Squarespace has wisely gone with a celebrity that its audience will certainly know.
Zendaya, of Spiderman and Euphoria fame, plays the role of ‘Sally’ from the tongue twister, ‘Sally sells seashells by the sea shore’.
Narrated by OutKast rapper, André 3000, this is a delightfully written voice-over that builds on the original tongue twister, continuing the alliteration throughout the entire narrative.
Then probably the most standout celebrity pick from this year’s bunch is Amazon’s ‘Mind Reader’ advert featuring Hollywood elite, Scarlett Johannson, alongside her real-life husband, Colin Jost.
The couple imagines what life might be like if the intuitive Amazon Alexa could actually read their minds. The jokes keep coming as they tit-for-tat through various scenarios that put us right in the middle of their marriage.
It’s brilliantly put together and genuinely funny throughout.
Finally, if you’re wondering if there are any adverts that don’t feature a celebrity—there’s one.
OK, there are a few, but honestly, there are not many.
It’s for Pringles. And it’s lovely.
A young man gets his hand stuck in a Pringles tube during his high school years and instead of claustrophobic panic, he just carries on regardless and we watch his entire life unfold with said Pringles tube still attached. It’s irreverent, ridiculous and wonderfully humorous.
I just hope the actor playing the protagonist isn’t actually someone really famous that I’ve never heard of. Although, given this year’s Super Bowl commercials, I wouldn’t be surprised.
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