Off the top of my head, I can’t name a single ad that I watched during this year’s Super Bowl. But once I read that the latest YouTube statistics revealed that the commercials and featurettes being produced for the 2014 FIFA World Cup had almost doubled the page views of the top Super Bowl ads, I thought, “Well sure, that’s because Nike made two awesome ads, Shakira stole our hearts again for Activia, Beats by Dre brought out the big guns, and even McDonald’s made a commercial that made me consider eating there.” But then, in defense of the ad wizards who busted their asses to make wholesome-yet-fun commercials that fit the NFL’s and Fox’s standards, the World Cup ads are also pretty long.
Additionally, the World Cup only comes around once every four years, so fans are a little more anxious and companies like Nike and Adidas have a more time to work on putting together absolute masterpieces. Still, the numbers are impressive as hell for this year’s World Cup ads, as the New York Post reported that in terms of YouTube views, soccer fans have clicked 590 million times compared to 305 million times for Super Bowl XLVIII. World Cup fans have also watched 1.2 billion minutes of ads, which is four times longer than the time we spent watching that Doritos commercial and the Budweiser one with the dog and horse. Hey, I remembered one!
But I’m a commercial critic who believes in fairness, so I agree that it’s not right to simply judge these ads on how many people watch them, since the World Cup draws fans from all around the world. Instead, let’s go one-on-one and pit Ad Blitz’s Top 5 commercials from Super Bowl XLVIII against the most viewed from the 2014 World Cup thus far. Let’s call it a scientific experiment so I can qualify for one of them awards that smart people get.
1) Budweiser’s “Puppy Love” vs. Shakira and Activia “La La La (Brazil 2014)”
Budweiser: 50+ million views
Shakira and Activia: 140+ million views
The Winner by a John Brooks Header: Budweiser, because it has a puppy.
2) Coca-Cola “America is Beautiful” vs. Nike “Winner Stays”
Coca-Cola: 11.6+ million views
Nike: 80.3+ million
The Winner by a Styled Hair on Ronaldo’s Head: Nike, only because I’ve tried so hard to pretend the outlandish pearl-clutching and racism that followed Coke’s ad never happened.
3) Chrysler “Detroit – Bob Dylan” vs. Samsung “#Galaxy11: The Training”
Chrysler: 11.5 million
Samsung: 54.3+ million
The Winner by All the Goals of Lionel Messi’s career: I still don’t know what “Is there anything more American than America?” means. But while I was trying to figure that out, all of the world’s biggest soccer stars saved us from an alien soccer player invasion, so I owe it to them to pick Samsung.
4) Duracell “Trust Your Power” vs. Nike “The Last Game”
Duracell: 22+ million views
Nike: 50+ million
The Winner by All the People Who Demanded “The Last Game” Be Made as an Actual Movie: Duracell. That Derrick Coleman spot is too powerful, man.
5) Jaguar “British Villains’ Rendezvous” vs. Adidas “The Dream”
Jaguar: 12.1+ views
Adidas: 35+ million views
The Winner by a Really Long Yawn: Come on. Ben Kingsley, Tom Hiddleston and Mark Strong? I don’t want this as a commercial, I want this as a movie! Jaguar all the way.
Verdict: The World Cup may be dominating in YouTube views and minutes watched, but the Super Bowl’s Top 5 commercials are superior by a 3-2 margin. That’s according to science, so nobody can debate this.