This post was updated with new ads.
At any Super Bowl party, there’s usually a pretty even split of people who are there for the game, and of those who are all about the ads in between plays. Super Bowl Sunday is the one day of the year that ad companies flex hardest, giving us sometimes inspiring — but mostly ridiculous — ads that seek to push the envelope of the subtly shifting commercial format. For one miraculous day, we ignore the fact that all of these ads are created by corporations that are probably helping to widen the wealth gap while decreasing the quality of life for the working class.
F*ck it! Give me Lil’ Jon gassing up Pepsi and The Dude shilling for beer!
This year, it looks like we’re going to have some possible contenders for capturing the cultural zeitgeist of 2019. Will the end of this decade be remembered for our love for Cardi B, Steve Carell, and ASMR, or our obsession with the 90s thanks to cultural icons like Carrie Bradshaw, The Dude, and The Backstreet Boys?
Here are all the food and drink ads that ran during this year’s Super Bowl LIII.
Avocados From Mexico – Avocado’s Will Arrive In Season
Rest assured, Avocado season is coming. Singing puppies, Kristin Chenoweth, and the promise of guacamole, what’s not to love here? Avocados are probably the only fruit that is truly worthy of a commercial, so as weird and random as this seemed to us (probably meant to counteract reports of “Blood Avocados” run by cartels), we’re happy to know the avocados are coming!
Bubly – It’s pronounced Boob-lay
I swear I’ve heard people pronounce Michael Bublé’s name Bubly. If you’re one of those people you should be ashamed of yourselves. Bubly is a Pepsi owned sparking water brand and they’ve just dropped some new flavors. Who better to advertise the new flavors than Michael Bublé, who has made a career on being irresistible to moms, the very target audience of Bubly!
The commercial is actually pretty funny, Bublé takes a sharpie to some Bubly cans, crossing out the ‘y’ and adding an ‘é’ to the annoyance of a store clerk who knows him by name, implying this isn’t the first time.
Budweiser – The Beer Company Goes Green To The Tune Of Dylan’s Blowin’ In The Wind
Budweiser brings back their trademark Clydesdale horses in an ad that features a dalmatian, a beer wagon, and the sound of Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind.” The wagon is being pulled through amber fields while large wind turbines spin in the distance, a nod to Budweiser’s practice of using renewable energy to power their breweries. The company will be supplying some of its clean wind energy to the city of Atlanta to help with power surges during Super Bowl week this year. Cool!
Burger King – The Horror Of The Mystery Box
The King is f*cking terrifying. Need we say more? This commercial is absolutely disturbing. Who likes the King? Can we all admit he’s the worst mascot of all time? In this horror of a commercial, the King sets up a chair in a dirty grey room. That’s all. Horrible. Burger King is advertising some sort of Mystery Box and at this point, we aren’t even kind of interested in what is inside of it. Just please, no more King.
Coca-Cola – A Coke Is A Coke
Andy Warhol once famously wrote “What’s great about this country is…the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking.” Coca-Cola has taken that line and made a Mad Men-esque feel-good ad about inclusivity and diversity. Everybody loves Coke after all! It’s a fine ad, the animation is pretty cool. Sugar tastes goooooood.
Doritos – Chance The Rapper And The Backstreet Boys Want It That Way
Chance the Rapper has already made one iconic commercial when he appeared in an ad singing Kit Kat’s jingle in his signature raspy warble, so how does Doritos expect to top that? Well, by adding the Backstreet Boys apparently.
Chance delivers one of his most unhinged verses in a quick rap about the wonders of Doritos’ new Flamin’ Hot Nacho flavor over a beat and sample of the Backstreet Boys’ “I Want it That Way.” Cut to Chance and the Boys dancing in an airplane hangar — a call back to the original video. I never noticed the parallels between Chance and the Backstreet Boys before, but they fit together strangely well.
M&M’s – Red, Yellow, and Orange Push Christina Applegate To The Edge
I can’t say for sure — because there is NO WAY I’m going to look into it — but it sounds like the voices of the M&M’s have changed. Am I crazy? Yellow sounds dumber and Red seems like he’s lost his edge. Anyway, M&M’s big Super Bowl ad introduces the M&M Chocolate Bars and features a cannibalism-threatening Christina Applegate.
The commercial has little to do with the bars, but it’s always good to see Veronica Corningstone (or Kelly Bundy if you’re old).
Michelob – Zoë Kravitz Does Beer ASMR
Whether you’re one of the many ASMR-obsessives out there or you struggle to get what all the hype is about, it’s likely you’re going to love Zoë Kravitz whispering and clinking her fingernails in stereo sound. It’s oddly satisfying and is probably about the most effective beer ad I’ve ever experienced. I don’t like Michelob, but dammit if I don’t want one after hearing Zoë Kravitz wax poetic in whisper-tones.
Pepsi – Steve Carell, Cardi B, and Lil Jon Think Pepsi Is Delicious
Have you ever tried to order a Coca-Cola at a restaurant only to be asked: “Is Pepsi Okay?” That is the entire premise of this commercial that sees Steve Carell berating a waiter for asking a woman if Pepsi is okay instead of her requested Coke. Carell enlists the help of Lil John and Cardi B to manipulate this poor woman into believing Pepsi is more than okay.
Carell is of course, wrong. We love him but the only thing Pepsi does better than Coke is Super Bowl advertisements.
Planters – Nutmobile Saves The Day
Nutmobile is the most ridiculous word we’ve ever heard and had the pleasure of typing. This commercial has good ol’ Mr. Peanut coming to A-Rod’s rescue by sliding him a tin of Planter’s Deluxe Mixed Nuts as he’s about to dip his hand into a bowl of kale chips. Charlie Sheen also makes an appearance. It’s one of those ads that go a little TOO far trying to be out there and surreal. Mission accomplished… I guess? It’s mostly nonsense, but hey, Nutmobile.
Pringles – Dystopian Doom
Honestly, we’re surprised there aren’t MORE ads featuring AI during the Super Bowl this year — technological advancement anxiety is all the rage these days! During Pringles’ commercial two friends stack Pringles, ingenious use of multiple flavors if you ask us, and wonder out loud how many different combinations exist in the world only to be answered by an Alexa-like device.
The device then laments how it’ll never know the joy of tasting Pringles only to be ignored and ordered to play Funky Town by its cruel masters. Artificial Intelligence won’t forget our cruelty.
Skittles – Michael C. Hall Goes Meta
Skittles enlisted Dexter and Lazarus start Michael C. Hall to perform a 30-minute musical ad on Broadway during Super Bowl afternoon at the Town Hall Theater in Times Square. Then they filmed a commercial about it in which an anxiety-ridden Michael C. Hall worries about his upcoming performance in the Skittles musical. It’s really weird, to say the least. I guess when you get Michael C. Hall you want to get your money’s worth though, he’s absolutely great in this commercial!
It makes you wonder what a world would be like if every commercial had this level of talent in it. All proceeds for Skittles Commercial: The Broadway Musical will go to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
Stella Artois – Carrie Bradshaw and The Dude Walk Into A Bar
Two iconic characters known for their trademark drinks walk into a bar and decide to change it up by ordering some Stella Artois. Whether you’re totally a Carrie, love The Dude, or both, this commercial is hard not to love. The Dude pronounces the beer “Stella Art-toes” and both characters get their own musical cues for Christ’s sake! It just feels good to get these two characters in a room together even though they have absolutely nothing to do with one another besides both being late 90s icons.
Bud Light – Knights Compare What’s Inside
Tonally, this is a weird one. Two knights whisper about the ingredients of their beers while drilling for an attack in a Trojan Horse. Knights. In a Trojan Horse. You know, like when King Arthur and Odysseus got drunk one weekend and figured out the best way to storm a castle is via a fake victory trophy. Bud Light is counting on you to not harp on little details like this but we just couldn’t resist.
Is the commercial any good? No, not really.
Bud Light – Bowl Cut
We guess Bud Light decided to opt out of making one big Super Bowl ad this year and instead spread that money around to give us several. This one bothers me way less than the Trojan Horse one. Some medieval barbers give bowl cuts while, again, comparing beer ingredients. Bud Light REALLY wants us to know something but we still can’t figure out what it is, probably because their new weird commercials are just too damn surreal. Anyway, this commercial is even shorter than the Bug Light Knights one and perhaps that has something to do with it being more enjoyable.
Bud Light – The Story Continues
Okay, so Miller Lite and Coors Lite use corn syrup in their brew and Bud Light doesn’t. Got it. Our problem with this commercial? Well, admittedly the medieval thing is starting to grow on us, but the idea that this fancy-ass King is ACTUALLY going to do all this work without passing it off to some lackeys is just too much for us to suspend our disbelief any longer. This guy goes on a Lord of the Rings-esque walking quest just to deliver a giant barrel of mistakingly-delivered corn syrup. Who is watching the kingdom while all of this goes down? Honestly, we need more Bud Light medieval themed commercials. Who the f*ck needs Game of Thrones when we have Bud Light?!
Michelob ULTRA – Robots Invade!
Ads just stay sh*tting on robots this year. Michelob brings us a nightmarish look into a future where robots have invaded our streets, golf courses, and gyms. They’re stronger than us, smarter than us, and faster than us, and now we’re rubbing the fact that they can’t drink beer and we can right in their faces! I think we’re supposed to feel for the robot outside watching people drink Michelob Ultra and enjoying life, but the only thing we feel right now is terror.
Please, robot makers. Make it so they can drink so we don’t all die as a result of keeping sub-par beer to ourselves.
Devour – Food Porn
Devour is a Kraft-Heinz owned frozen food brand, we’ve never heard of them before and now we will remember them forever for making one weird ass commercial. A frustrated wife laments losing her husband to his uncontrollable addiction to “frozen food porn.” He’s watching it on his iPad, his laptop, and he’s making is own amateur food porn. But he also spends a lot of his time eating it. Which isn’t at all the same thing. Is he addicted to seeing pictures of frozen food or is he addicted to the food itself? Which is it Devour!? Get your concept straight, some of us pay attention to commercials and write about them for money. Give us logic or give us DEATH!
BON & VIV – Mermaids And Some Talking Sharks
We imagine the ad pitch for this one went something like this: “Okay, BON & VIV, you got mermaids on the can. Right now the kids are talking about Aquaman. Aquaman this, Aquaman that, Jason Momoa is HOT right now. Can we get him? What are you kidding? You’re BON & VIV, no one has even heard of you before. What we can do is a couple mermaids and some underwater CG. Throw some sharks in there and ya got yourself a real banger of a commercial.” Talking sharks, boozy seltzer, mission f*cking accomplished.
Burger King – Eat Like Andy
Burger King repurposed a scene from 66 Scenes of America of pop-artist Andy Warhol eating a Whopper, which means they put absolutely no effort into this ad. Does that make it a bad ad? Not at all. What was likely some form of wry commentary on American living from the 60s still translates well into our time and captures something that is both simple and effective. Forget the surrealism, the try-to-hard attempt at humor. Here is a guy eating. He could be somebody or nobody, it doesn’t matter. He’s hungry, so he’s going to eat Burger King. Bravo BK.
Dietz & Watson – Craig Robinson Goes Crazy For Dietz Nuts
Dietz & Watson is delicious. I know because when I buy deli meat I’ll often opt for ol’ D&W, they don’t need an ad to make me believe they probably make a solid nut snack as well. And yet, here we are, not just with an ad but a brilliant ad where they play on their own name is a spectacularly juvenile fashion. Who better than to deliver such great lines as “How Dietz Nuts Taste?” and “Grab a handful of Dietz Nutz” then Craig Robinson? The jokes are very stupid but Robinson sells it with a smile so big you’re right there with him. We can’t help but love this one, even if our more mature side is perpetually shaking their head at us. They can grab Dietz Nuts and f*ck off.