The best Super Bowl ads of all time
MASTER LOCK 1975
Can a Master Lock really withstand a direct shot fired by a .30 caliber rifle? Apparently not, according to this classic 1975 ad aired during Super Bowl IX.
“It’s a miracle,” remarks an amazed monk in this 1976 commercial for the Xerox 9200, a copier used in an ad showcased during Super Bowl X.
Although Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle “Mean” Joe Greene made it to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he may best be remembered for the famous “Hey Kid, Catch!” Coca-Cola commercial that was featured in 1980 during Super Bowl XIV.
Directed by Ridley Scott, Apple tapped into 1984 Orwellian paranoia during Super Bowl XVIII to herald the arrival of the Macintosh computer, a stunning spot that’s consistently regarded as one of the best commercials of all time.
How many Super Bowl ads have impacted a presidential race? Walter Mondale memorably used Wendy’s “Where’s the beef?” slogan, part of a promo that appeared during Super Bowl XVIII, to slam Gary Hart during the 1984 Democratic primary.
DIET PEPSI 1987
How far would you go to impress a beautiful new neighbor? Michael J. Fox braved torrential rain, heavy traffic, a biker gang and a Kenny Chesney soundtrack to deliver a Diet Pepsi in the charming “new neighbor” ad which aired during Super Bowl XXI.
A Nissan Maxima outran the wrath of pigeon daredevils in a memorable commercial that took flight during Super Bowl XXXI.
TABASCO MOSQUITO 1998
Memo to mosquitoes: avoid the blood of those tasting Tabasco. An ill-fated insect discovered this the hard way during Super Bowl XXXII.
Monster.com looked to offer viewers a more prosperous career path in this 1999 spot, in which children explained what they ”>“wanted” to be when they grew up.
What is EDS? It was an IT company that “brought together information, ideas and technology” -- a task akin to herding cats, this Super Bowl XXXIV commercial explained.
Although Pets.com may be more famous today as a casualty of the early 2000s dot-com bubble burst, this memorable 2000 ad helped give the pet supply retailer a high profile in American pop culture.
The usually-serious Bob Dole comes off as quite funny in this 2001 Pepsi commercial that aired during Super Bowl XXXV. Until Dole mentions Pepsi, viewers are likely to think they’re being sold some natural male enhancement.
This Budweiser ad only ran once -- during 2002’s Super Bowl XXXVI -- as a heartfelt response to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
When Felcher & Sons called Reebok to hire Terry Tate to be their “office linebacker,” office productivity suddenly increased. This 2003 ad, aired during Super Bowl XXXVII, is frequently cited among the best Super Bowl commercials ever.
BUD LIGHT 2004
If only all dogs knew how to do this. Bud Light continued its tradition of funny Super Bowl commercials with this 2004 ad, which aired during Super Bowl XXXVIII.
The phrase “don’t judge too quickly” was the impetus for this funny 2006 Ameriquest commercial, aired during Super Bowl XL.
BUD LIGHT 2008
Semi-Pro may not have gotten great reviews, but this commercial did. It’s Will Ferrell as Jackie Moon in a Bud Light spot that does double duty as a Semi-Pro ad, which aired during 2008’s Super Bowl XLII.
Some might disagree with the Doritos executive who thinks beer-flavored chips -- each containing the same amount of alcohol as a 16-oz. beer -- are a bad idea in this 2009 spot from Super Bowl XLIII. But maybe he’s right: the pitchman loses control of himself pretty quickly.
This 2010 commercial, a sequel to the 2007 one that put any David Letterman/Oprah Winfrey feud rumors to rest, came as a surprise in the middle of the Conan O’Brien/Jay Leno feud, which Letterman had also weighed in on. Aired during Super Bowl XLIV, it was a big hit with viewers.
Bet you’d never thought you’d see Betty White get laid out in a pickup football game, but she does in this ad from Super Bowl XLIV in 2010. Upon eating a Snickers, the hungry athlete transforms back into himself.
OLD SPICE 2010
Old Spice’s excellent marketing team debuted this ad during Super Bowl XLIV in 2010, typical of the company’s efforts to provide caricatures of manliness and masculinity.
BUD LIGHT 2010
Only when his father uses a remote starter on his Volkswagen does this young Darth Vader truly discover The Force. This 2011 commercial aired during Super Bowl XLV.
It’s the worst nightmare of anyone who has ever worked in a large office or organization -- accidentally hitting “reply all” on a message not meant for everyone’s eyes. It happens to the man in this Bridgestone spot from Super Bowl XLV in 2011, and he proceeds to freak out before learning it was a false alarm.
You have to wonder if the people who sell television ads have quotas for cute animals. In this Bridgestone ad from 2011’s Super Bowl XLV, a squirrel barely escapes with his life thanks to some quality tires.
Matthew Broderick and Honda paid homage to the 1986 classic Ferris Bueller’s Day Off in a fantastic ad for the CR-V that aired during Super Bowl XLVI last year, complete with Yello’s “Oh Yeah” playing in the background.
This woman is willing to put her grandchild’s life at stake for a bag of Doritos in this commercial from last year’s Super Bowl XLVI.