Considered by many as the greatest show on Earth, on Sunday 1st February 2015 the world will be looking towards Arizona. Why? Super Bowl Sunday. Yup, it’s the Super Bowl XLIX (that’s 49 to those of us who don’t like Roman numerals) which is being hosted in Glendale, Arizona. Battling it out will be the New England Patriots against the Seattle Seahawks. Both teams were no.1 in their leagues, Patriots in the AFC, Seattle in the NFC. And if this Super Bowl wasn’t special enough, this is the Patriots 3rd appearance in the Games, whilst the Seahawks, the returning champions from last year, will be back to defend their title. But the Super Bowl is rarely just about American football anymore. It’s about two other things, music, namely the hotly anticipated ‘Halftime Show’ and advertising. With last year’s viewings tallied up to 111.5 million American viewers (biggest in U.S. history), the Super Bowl is an advertiser’s w** dream. And why not? The event is the holy grail of advertising platforms, with the World Cup and the Olympics following behind in second and third place.

Just think of the hits they potentially generate via television, plus with the internet as rampant as ever, these ads will trend and spread like wildfire. Heck, a lot of people actually look forward to the ads just as much as the football and Halftime Show! So as we’re gearing up for an all-nighter to check out the game on Sunday, we put together a selection of ads that had made the rounds last year, in anticipation of Super Bowl Sunday, so have at it!

Sidenote: If you want to see who’s being featured on the Jumbotron live, check out AdAge’s listing of who’s showing. We’ll throw up those 2015 adverts and commentary next week Monday.

Here are the 2014 ads from Super Bowl Sunday last year, commentary by JR.

Coke – ‘It’s Beautiful’

Verdict: Nice atmospheric feel with the music backing and the montage of people enjoying the small moments in life is sweet. It’s actually quite typical of Coke to continue what it does best. Focusing on those moments of life appreciation rather than constantly plugging their product. The advert seems to be more of an ‘ode’ to ‘America the Beautiful’ as opposed to the actual cola drink. Overall, it’s a nice advert. Grade: B+

Kia – ‘The Truth’

Verdict: It starts off quite typically a couple going to dinner and the maitre d is none other than Morpheus. You can guess what’s coming next, red or blue? Except its keys this time, not pills. The car advert pays homage to the cult film ‘The Matrix’ in quite a funny, slightly over the top way. Grade: B-

Microsoft – ‘Empowering’

Verdict: This advert reminds the viewers that technology, for all intends and purposes, has over the years made the impossible possible. From galactic exploration to artistic expressions. From bio-mechanic prosthetics to instant video calling. Another reminder that despite the downsides technology may bring, it has and will continue to improve the lives of everyone around us, give hope to those who need and deserve it. It’s quite touching, nice job Microsoft. Grade: A

NSA – ‘We’re There For You’

Verdict: NSA you say? That’s the U.S. National Security Agency….yes THAT NSA. Now now don’t smirk. In their first ever ad, they state the obvious. They’re always watching. Pretty ballsy move. Of course they try make light of the situation by injecting humour into the ad, which definitely helps. It’s so obviously ironic, it’s like their poking fun at themselves. Maybe an attempt to make themselves appear less scary and shadowy? Grade: C

AXE – ‘Make Love, Not War’

Verdict: Hahaa, love it! It’s short, it’s sweet, it’s straight to the damn point. It’s scenic with high attention to detail, and its great to see something that is of a topical reminder. In a world that’s currently tainted with war and unrest, love conquers all. Cliche yeah totally! But it works and my goodness we need a little more love in this dreary world. Plus the ending, HA! Great stuff. Grade: A+

Bud Light – ‘Up For Whatever’

Verdict: Didn’t know what to expect when watching this. Quite a spectacle! I like how the guy (who I’m honestly hoping isn’t an actor) just gets taken on this wild-ride of a night. With hi-jinks, randomness and appearances of the odd few celebrities, that’s the definition of one hell of a night. Little jealous actually. Grade: B

TurboTax – ‘Love Hurts’

Verdict: This is a great advert. Good plot-line, nice use of irony and humour and of course, plugs the product right at the end of the ad. Grade: B+

Doritos – Time Machine

Verdict: Bwhahahahahahaha!!! Easily one of the best ads from last year’s event! I won’t say what happens because watching it will do it more justice than merely describing it. Grade: A

Cheerios – ‘Gracie’

Verdict: This is cute! It’s simple in its settings and thought-out in its plot.I like how the girl hears what her Dad has to say and then wittingly has a comeback he didn’t see coming. What the father said however, may not go down so well with the mother. Grade: B+

Chevrolet – ‘Life’

Verdict: This advert takes the scenic route, literally and figuratively. In this ad Chevrolet & the American Cancer Society team up to recognise and celebrate survivors in this lovely advert. With the appropriate backing music, the lush natural backdrop and no words spoken, it’s effectively moving. Grade: A

T-Mobile – ‘No Contract’

Verdict: If your a Tebow fan, or just happen to like big burly men this might suit you. T-Mobile partner up with the former American quarterback in this ad about the benefits of no phone contracts.

 Go Daddy – Puppet Master

Verdict: It’s erm….err..rah…random. Yeah, quite random. But I guess it’s in a sort of vain of GoDaddy’s unique service and odd persona? Ahh who knows, that advert was just weird. Grade: D

Volkswagen – ‘Wings’

Verdict: This is quite hilarious! I like how VW made paired the factual side of German efficiency with a funny ‘what-if’ scenario. It’s a fun and imaginative advert, a good watch, especially loved the boss pessimistic but funny response.  Grade: A-

M&M’s – ‘Delivery’

Verdict: This is quick and quirky with going too left-field. It’s decent and features the infamous JK Simmons as everyone’s favourite dopey peanut. Grade: B-

Toyota – ‘Big Game’

Verdict: Love Terry Crews, the man is hench as hell and funny to boot too. Putting him together with the Muppets was a great idea by the marketing team for Toyoto. I mean who doesn’t like the Muppets? (If you say no, please show yourself out. Joking!…Kind of…) There’s music, dancing and Terry losing his shirt (and mind). Grade: A-

GoPro – ‘Red Bull Stratos’

Verdict: GoPro team up with Red Bull to do this video dive featuring Felix Baumgartner. Who also broke records with this dive at approx 24 miles. Damn. Grade: B

Audi – ‘Doberhuahua’

Verdict: This is bonkers to say the least. The dog is freaky (you’ll see why when you watch it). It’s freaky in a funny but bizarre way. But the end selling point is true. It’s quite outrageous for an Audi advert so well done to them for stepping out of their comfort zone. Grade: B+

Jaguar – ‘Rendezvous’

Verdict: One word to sum this ad up? Kickass. Oh yeah, this advert is brilliant, with the subtle Bond type action theme and with a stellar cast. With Ben Kingsley, Mark Strong & Tom Hiddleston, they put up a convincing and elaborate argument why Brits make good villains and can play bad very well. This has fast paced action, flashy cars and ‘copters, accents and flair. Grade: A

Heinz – ‘Hum’

Verdict: Like how they incorporated the ‘If you’re happy and you know it’ song into this advert. It’s clever without being obnoxiously so. Again, a good ad where no words are spoken, because expressions and actions carry more weight and meaning. Simple. (Sidenote: That song may be stuck in your head all day, we claim no responsibility whatsoever.) Grade: B+






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