Super Bowl 2018 Ad Analysis

After two weeks of seemingly endless predictions regarding what would occur during virtually every minute of the Super Bowl LII broadcast, last night answered which team would win, what Justin Timberlake would sing, and whose commercials would be good, bad, and ugly.

Winner? The Eagles in a 41-33 shootout whose 1,152 offensive yards were the most of any NFL game ever.

JT’s performance? Some classics like “Rock Your Body” and “Sexy Back” mixed with a Prince tribute accompanied by a projection of Prince.

As for the commercials, the subjective labels of best, worst, and ugliest are best left to the eye of the beholder, so here’s an objective recap of all that aired from kickoff to 0:00 on Sunday night:

 

BLOCK BRAND CATEGORY IN A NUTSHELL
1 Toyota Auto Olympic skier proves anything is possible.
  Sprint Tech Robots make fun of guy for using Verizon.
2 Solo: Star Wars Content Solo: Stars Wars coming this summer.
  Turkish Airlines Travel Dr. Oz says widen your world.
  Rise (NBC Show) Content NBC’s Rise is coming
3 Budweiser Food/Bev Medieval Dilly Dilly.
  Mars Food/Bev Danny Devito likes M & Ms.
  Winter Olympics Content The Winter Olympics are coming.
4 Dodge Auto Ram trucks will get Vikings to the Super Bowl, even if The Vikings aren’t in it.
  Wendy’s Food/Bev Wendy’s burgers are made fresh and killin’ it.
  The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon Content Jimmy is on tonight after the game and This is Us so you’ll probably be asleep and miss him.
5 Hulu’s Castle Rock Content Hulu has a new show.
  Sketchers Apparel Sketchers are, as always, great for Howie Long’s feet.
  Heroes Arena Gaming Download and play a video game with friends.
  Winter Olympics Content The Winter Olympics are still coming.
6 Doritos Food/Bev Busta-rapping Peter Dinklage likes Doritos’ new spicy chips.
  Mountain Dew Food/Bev And Missy-rapping Morgan Freeman likes new Mountain Dew Ice.
  Tide Home Clean clothes mean it’s a Tide ad.
  Skyscraper Content The Rock is a badass in yet another movie.
7 Budweiser Food/Bev The Bud Knight kind of saves the day.
  E Trade Finance An E Trade retirement account will keep you from working at 85.
  Mission Impossible Fallout Content Tom Cruise is still jumping all over the place.
  Olympics (NBC) Content Winter Olympics will have figure skating!
  This is Us (NBC) Content Set your DVRs because the This is Us fire happens tonight!
8 Rocket Mortgage Finance Quicken makes mortgages simple.
  Avocados from Mexico Food/Bev Avocados taste great on lots of things.
  The Cloverfield Paradox (Netflix) Content New Netflix sci-fi series coming.
9 Diet Coke Twisted Mango Food/Bev Coke’s new diet soda makes you dance weird.
  Jeep Auto Jeep takes you past where the road ends.
  Tide Home Old Spice guy does Tide ad.
  WeatherTech Auto WeatherTech makes stuff in America.
10 Pringles Food/Bev Pringles lets you stack flavors to make new ones.
  Febreeze Home Febreeze makes your feet not stink
  Michelob Ultra Food/Bev Michelob Ultra is for everyone, not just Chris Pratt
11 BLACKOUT NA Thought maybe this was one of those grab-your-attention-then-serve-you-an-ad ads, but nope.
12 SquareSpace Tech Keanu Reeves likes SquareSpace
  Dodge Auto Ram trucks, with MLK narration, are built to serve
13 Australia Travel You can have a great time in Australia even if you’re not the next Crocodile Dundee.
  TurboTax Finance TurboTax makes taxes simple.
  Persil Home Persil delivers premium clean.
  Good Girls (NBC) Content Good Girls coming soon.
14 NFL Content There’s no offseason.
  News 4 (NBC Local Affiliate) Content Local NBC news channel works for you.
  Yellowtail Wine Food/Bev Kangaroos love Yellowtail.
  Nationwide Auto (Local) Auto You should buy cars from a local dealer.
  Dominion Energy Home Local energy company powers the future.
  NFL Content Eli Manning talks about TD dance.
15 Toyota Auto Toyota takes religious leaders of all sorts to the football game.
  Olympics (NBC) Content Lindsey Vonn is a badass.
16 Unsolved (USA TV show) Content A show about Tupac’s murder coming.
  Pepsi Food/Bev Jimmy Fallon introduces JT from big NYC Pepsi sign.
17 Jack Ryan (Amazon Prime show) Content Jim from The Office is a hero in a new Amazon series.
  Verizon Tech Verizon helps first responders save lives.
18 The Voice (NBC show) Content The Voice is coming later this month.
  Xfinity Content Xfinity will help you experience the Winter Olympics.
  Royal Farms (Local) Food/Bev Ravens’ kicker sings opera to promote convenience store coffee.
  Long Roofing (Local) Home A new roof will protect you from winter.
  NFL Content Eli is still plotting a TD dance.
19 Lexus Auto New Lexus even works for superheroes.
  Tide Home Even though there’s a Clydesdale it’s still a Tide ad.
  Budweiser Food/Bev Budweiser bottled and donated water to California
  Turbo Tax Finance Turbo Tax gets taxes done.
20 Jeep Auto Jeeps let Jeff Goldblum (and you) chase dinosaurs.
  Westworld (HBO Show) Content Westworld Season 2 is coming soon.
  Turbo Tax Finance Turbo Tax makes taxes easy.
21 Kia Auto Steven Tyler gets younger by driving backwards on a track.
  Blacture Content There’s a new website for black people only.
  NFL Content Eli still thinking about TD dances.
  NBC Content Winter Olympics are still coming.
22 Avengers Content Another Avengers movie is coming.
  T Mobile Tech We should all be equal!
  Jesus Christ Superstar (NBC Live Musical) Content John Legend is going to star in this musical.
23 Toyota Auto Toyota believes anything is possible.
  Wix Tech You can create a stunning episode with Wix
  Kraft Food/Bev Kraft helps you celebrate with your family
  Today Show (NBC) Content Today Show is still good
24 NFL Content Eli and OBJ are ready for TD dances next season.
  Raytheon Tech Technology makes the world a safer place.
  Chevron Tech Chevron drones help keep things moving.
  Cyprus Air (Local Gas Fireplaces) Home Local fireplace company with Trump impersonator and Redskins QB Kirk Cousins.
25 Monster Tech Monster’s wireless headphones are changing the game.
  Michelob Ultra Food/Bev Chris Pratt has fun because he drinks Michelob Ultra
  Groupon E-Commerce Buying Groupons supports local businesses.
26 Amazon alexa Home Lots of celebs answer people’s alexa requests.
27 Coca-Cola Food/Bev There’s a Coke for me and a Coke for you.
  Universal Parks & Resorts Travel Payton Manning enjoys Universal’s offseason.
  Telemundo Content Telemundo has lots of soccer to watch.
28 Hyundai Auto Cancer survivors thank Hyundai buyers.
  Olympics (NBC) Content Winter Olympics are still coming.
29 Stella Artois Food/Bev Matt Damon is still helping give people water through Stella Artois chalice glasses.
  Jeep Auto Jeeps can drive through water.
  Tide Home Tide is just the best.
  This is Us (NBC) Content All of your This is Us questions will be answered after the game.

 

And, as if that weren’t enough, a categorical breakdown of the 92 ads:

My personal takeaway? Content – or should I say marketing one’s own content through one’s own network – is king, and NBC really hopes American viewers are ready to watch athletes compete on snow and ice.

 

 

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