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Building a better mousetrap

The Super Bowl has become so overhyped as to become ridiculous (Fox had five-plus hours of pregame coverage on Sunday). And there’s always the overhyped halftime show, which I never give a damn about, in which some band (lately more has-beens than fresh acts) gives a performance on a stage that is rushed by an audience which is rocking out with the kind of enthusiasm that can only have been bought. Call me a purist, but I watch the Super Bowl because I truly like to watch, you know, football, not because it’s the biggest self-indulgent media event of the year.

Anyway, equally overhyped with the Super Bowl are the commercials, which have become a monster of their own. Of recent years, probably my favorite has been Reebok’s memorably hard-hitting Terry Tate, Office Linebacker.

But every year it seems like I hear people say, gee, “The commercials weren’t very good this year.” Why is it that seems to be the conventional wisdom every year?

I can’t say I necessarily disagree this year, but there were still some good ones. My favorite from this year is actually not a new commercial at all but is a full year old. It involves Doritos and a mousetrap. Video below:

The complete surprise factor is what makes this ad so laugh-out-loud funny. (That and the ass-kicking.) This is one of those genuinely imaginative, offbeat concepts that I look at and say, “How did they come up with that?” It’s subversive and weird and I like it.

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4 comments on this post

Linking this back to your FCC thread: So it is fine to show a humorous commercial of a guy being savagely beaten?

I downloaded the superbowl after the fact, with all the commercials cut out. A far more rewarding experience.

As I mentioned in that column, violence is not subject to FCC rules. Only “indecency” linked to language, nudity, or sex.

Of course, I think even the FCC wouldn’t be so silly as to come down on slapstick like this.

God, I miss Terry Tate. Those commercials are what first got me interested in football. Well, that and Madden, which is another example of overhyped trash.

My favorite from this year was the Charles Barkley/Dwayne Wade ad.

I’m so glad I’m not the only one who noticed all those teens RUSHING the stage for Tom Fricken Petty. Half those kids probably didn’t even know who the man was. I don’t get the big deal with him. At least Prince showed that he had a heartbeat last year. Petty just went through the motions.

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