February 04, 2020

 

 

By Gonzalo López Martí - Creative director, etc / lmmiami.com/

  • Here’s Gonzalo’s take on the big game’s advertising extravaganza. Methodology: I made a point of watching the whole thing the way an average Joe or Jane would: untethered to the biases of an industry insider. I might have missed a few spots due to bathroom breaks or sheer disinterest, but what you will read below is unaided recall off the top of my head, which, if you ask me, is the one and only way advertising should be judged and measured. Then again, I’ve been in this racket far too long so the professional critique is there.
  • Overall, the broadcast and its content did justice to the city where it was held. I don’t think I’ve seen a Super Bowl this wacky and borderline unhinged in a while, advertising wise. The good thing: no power outages or wardrobe malfunctions (sort of).
  • --Doritos Cool Ranch.
  • A winner. Flawless choice of spokespersons and music, an earworm/eyeworm perfect for TikTok with just the right amount of silly. Laser-like strategy. It won’t win a Cannes Lion but it will sell a ton of corn tortillas.
  • --Coca-Cola Energy
  • The Atlanta mothership has been flirting with this category for at least 15 years and it looks like it has finally jumped in with both feet. The spot is good, right on strategy. Not sure the script takes full advantage of the talent.
  • --Turkish Airlines
  • An atmospheric spot based on solid strategy. The premise might be a bit of a truism and a stereotype, but what insight isn’t? Are Americans really as uncurious and parochial as some people purport? Compared to whom? You might ask yourself whether lecturing a country during its favorite pastime is a good strategy. In any case, an awful lot of Americans will never set foot on a Turkish Airlines aircraft to begin with. This spot addresses the ones that, with a little nudge, will eventually do so.
  • --Half Time Show
  • I won’t go as far as saying it was a missed opportunity. All exposure is good exposure (wink wink nudge nudge). Who knows what happened behind the scenes and why or how the NFL and/or the main sponsor (Pepsi) opted for this cast of performers and this particular repertoire. I do believe it was somewhat of a cliché. I found the whole thing a bit too low brow. Plus, I can think of a dozen artists and/or acts who deserve to be on this stage way more than Bad Bunny or JBalvin. I know, I know: a segment of, say, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton might not be exactly what Super Bowl audiences expect. Nevertheless, it was an opportunity to display Hispanic culture in a different light and the organizers seem to have settled for tired formulas.
  • --Genesis SUV
  • Another one of those spots that looks and sounds like it was written by a committee of planners. A winner nevertheless. Airtight script, dead on delivery by the Teigen-Legends. It won’t garner accolades at Cannes but it will sell SUVs galore.
  • --Bud Lite Seltzer
  • Rapper Post Malone doing his own stunts, right on strategy and with a generous dose of self-deprecating humor. Winner.
  • --Planters.
  • Looney.
  • --Little Caesars
  • Crayzoid.
  • --Google
  • Awe-inspiring and creepy in equal doses.
  • --Sabra Hummus
  • Lisergic.
  • --Pop Tarts
  • WTF? LOL!
  • --Verizon
  • Counterprogramming. A little gravitas in a sea of quirk. Thumbs up.
  • --Budweiser.
  • A total misfire, IMHO. Unclever, preachy, disconnected, painful to watch.
  • --Reeses
  • Let’s call it eccentric.
  • --Alexa
  • Straight outta Seattle.
  • --Michelob
  • Another planner-written spot. John Cena & Jimmy Fallon deliver regardless.
  • --P&G
  • LOL. Talk about crayzoid. Something is changing at P&G. I liked it and it makes sense for the Cincinnati behemoth to raise its profile this way, I guess.
  • ¬--Jeep
  • Can’t call it a failure but this spot has everything to hit it out of the park (a cool new Jeep product that will make America drool, a legendary movie, Bill effen Murray) and it somehow falls short.
  • --Trump-Pence 2020
  • Evil genius.
  • --Hummer
  • A quiet, supercharged, zero emission and zero gas-guzzling guiltless Hummer? Where do I sign up to the waiting list? Why spend money advertising a product that will sell like hotcakes?
  • --Tide
  • An costly attempt to hijack the broadcast following on the steps of the brilliantly memorable “It’s a Tide ad” saga from a few years back. Fell short but it will move product.

 

 

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