Step Forward President Eastwood: Verdict on the Super Bowl ads
So the biggest advertising orgy of the year is over. The Super Bowl is finally behind us. Never mind the actual result of the game, it's how the ads did that is exercising everybody . Many (more then ever) had been previewed. So the element of surprise was gone. In solitary splendour, the ad itself may have looked OK. But in the cacophony all around at game time , they made less of an impact. There was noise all around. In Indiana, in the bars, in the noisy at-home parties.One commentator said he couldn't hear a word . Maybe a silent movie like The Actor would have beena better bet . The Wall Street Journal ran a poll, attracting 36,000 voters . A leading contender was from a man who, in two minutes, didn't mention the brand once. Maybe he WAS the brand: Clint Eastwood. (It actually was Chrysler) "Powerful and one of the best Super Bowl ads ever," said Allen Adamson, managing director of Landor New York, owned by WPP. "So, Clint Eastwood needs to be president. Just saying," read a Tweet on Twitter. An Acura commercial in which Jerry Seinfeld was one-upped by Jay Leno, was in the lead for Number One in early results, said the WSJ . "Fantastic. This is what a Super Bowl ad should look like," said Mark Wnek, a former chairman of Lowe New York.. The ad was by Rubin Postaer & Associates of Santa Monica. The New York Times said, "Too many commercials fell back on tactics that were too familiar from a plethora of Super Bowl spots: anthropomorphic animals, second-class celebrities, slapstick violence and riding the coattails of popular culture. "Risk-taking, rule-breaking ideas were as hard to find among the more than 50 commercials as good taste in a GoDaddy ad ... Yes, sad to say, once again GoDaddy served up stale cheesecake in the form of two commercials that exploited women in the guise of empowerment." The Times directed a barb at 2nd Story Software, "which compared the relief felt when getting a free tax return to the relief felt when urinating in a swimming pool. CareerBuilder brought back its chimpanzees dressed as humans, meant to personify nitwit co-workers. "But the only nitwits were the creators of the commercial, who ignored a growing belief on Madison Avenue that it is wrong to use live apes in ads," said The Times. However the serious Best Buy ad, previewed by the Drum, feature Philippe Kahn, the man who invented the camera phone, got a nod of approval. The San Jose Mercury news dissed "silly sight gags, stupid animal tricks, and talking babies." It too made the point about the dubious value of previews ."With so much advance hype, it's harder than ever to live up to expectations and bust through the clutter -- even if you've forked over $3.5 million a pop. "Consequently, only a precious few commercials truly bowled us over. The majority came off as safe, formulaic and even mouldy." Most inspiring, said the Mercury News agreeing with WSJ readers was Eastwood, " When Clint Eastwood speaks, people listen. With a raspy-voiced tone, he delivered a stirring pep talk on behalf of Chrysler and the city of Detroit. "Now, will someone hand Clint a throat lozenge?" David Beckham showing off his, um, underwear (and tattoos) brought this comment, "We don't know how many men's briefs the ad will sell, but it should send a lot of men flocking to the gym." Dogs were everywhere on Sunday, but none shone as brightly as Mr. Quiggly did for Skechers footwear, said the Mercury News. "The cocky little French bulldog ruled the racetrack, but the pièce de résistance was his moonwalk across the finish line. " The Drum thought the Volkswagen ad was good - but not a patch on the Darth Vader spot last year. The Washington Post spotlighted an inter-company dispute over General Motors' ad showing a man who, driving a Silverado pick-up - survived an apocalypse. At the end several men realised their Ford-driving buddy didn't survive. Ford was not amused . It asked GM to stop showing the spot, but GM declined. Have a look. It is a bit nasty.