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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / The Grueling Truth's Top 10 Sports Lists / Top 10 Greatest Super Bowl Commercials of All Time

Top 10 Greatest Super Bowl Commercials of All Time

Publish Date: 02/07/2024
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

Today the commercials are a big part of the Super Bowl. The reason for that is when over 100 million people in the USA are all watching the same thing; there is no better way to promote your product than a funny commercial that introduces your brand to so many people. If you love the Super Bowl, you will love looking back at the Worst Coaching Decisions in Super Bowl history!

Criteria

Is the commercial entertaining? Did it let people know about a product nobody ever knew about before? Is it still remembered years after the commercial aired? All of those factors play into these rankings of the greatest Super Bowl commercials.

10) FedEx – The Lollipop Guild (2000)

FedEx earned praise for this Super Bowl commercial that recreates an iconic scene from The Wizard of Oz: when Dorothy first arrived at Munchkinland and encountered obstacles, FedEx came through and saved them! Although eventually pulled due to safety concerns from the National Inhalant Prevention Council, this spot still deserves mention as something wonderfully weird!

Video: Wizard Of OZ FEDEX Commercial

Wizard Of OZ FEDEX Commercial

9) Nike – Hare Jordan (Super Bowl XXVIII)

Discover the original commercial that inspired Space Jam! In 1993, Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan first collaborated in this semi-live-action/animated commercial that features both characters. Together, they help defeat a group of antagonistic players while wearing Nike Air Jordans!

Of course, from there, you get the Iconic “Space Jam” movie that made Michael Jordan even bigger, if that was even possible by then.

Video: Nike - Hare Jordan (1993, USA)

Nike – Hare Jordan (1993, USA)

8) Reebok – Terry Tate (Super Bowl XXXVII)

Reebok produced one of the most iconic ads during Super Bowl XXXVII. This ad featured Terry Tate, an esteemed football player-turned-actor, as an employee hired to improve productivity and culture at Reebok.

And the player brings his unique way of dealing with productivity issues – by literally attacking other employees. While doing this, his boss-like figure comments on how great Mr. Tate has been for their team.

Video: OFFICIAL - Terry Tate Office Linebacker

OFFICIAL – Terry Tate Office Linebacker “Superbowl Spot”

7) Budweiser – Bud Bowl (Super Bowl XXIII)

Bud Light was officially unveiled to the world during the Super Bowl in 1989 as part of a humorous commercial promoting it alongside its well-established counterpart, Budweiser.

This commercial recreated a Super Bowl scene where Budweiser and Bud Light took to the stage and battled for dominance on a podium. This was a great Super Bowl game in 1989 and the Bud Light commercial was a big deal at the time and would carry on for more years after 1989, but the others were nowhere as good as this original.

Video: Bud Bowl I

Bud Bowl I

6) Pepsi – Cindy Crawford (Super Bowl XXVII)

In 1992, Pepsi harnessed the power of supermodel Cindy Crawford, a red Lamborghini, and a pair of daisy dukes to draw attention to their new can design. The ad proved so popular and iconic that the soda brand recreated it nearly 30 years later for their 2018 Super Bowl commercial – including Cindy’s son!

Super Bowl XXVII may have been a blowout, but the commercials and the halftime show made up for the blowout game.

Video: Advertising Pepsi with Cindy Crawford - 1992

Advertising Pepsi with Cindy Crawford – 1992

5) Best Buds (Budweiser) β€” Super Bowl XLVIII

Animals have the power to stir our emotions, particularly puppies. Budweiser made this connection when running their Super Bowl XLVIII commercial featuring adorable pups, especially when that puppy is a Lab!

Set to Passenger’s song, “Let Her Go,” two unlikely companions — a puppy and horse — form an unlikely bond.

Animal lovers might be overcome with emotion by the end of this commercial as the horse chases after his companion and won’t allow her to leave his side. Animal lovers may shed a tear during this commercial.

Video: Budweiser Clydesdale Puppy Love Super Bowl 2014 Commercial

Budweiser Clydesdale Puppy Love Super Bowl 2014 Commercial

4) The Showdown (McDonald’s) β€” Super Bowl XXVII

Larry Bird of the Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan were fierce rivals on the court, yet respected each other off it and became friends.

McDonald’s brought Bird and Jordan together for an exhilarating game of H-O-R-S-E in 1993’s Super Bowl XXVII commercials.

Bird and Jordan attempted improbable shots from various positions inside and outside the arena, such as from stands, rafters, or outside. As is the case in games, their attempts hit “nothing but net.” Want to know which team was the biggest underdog in Super Bowl history?

Video:

“The Showdown” – Bird vs. Jordan McDonald’s ad – 1993

3) Wendy’s – Where’s The Beef (Super Bowl XVIII)

Wendy’s has long been known for its cutting tweets. However, even before social media existed, it had long been trolling its rivals through advertising campaigns like its 1984 Super Bowl commercial, where they coined its now iconic catchphrase of “Where’s the beef?” an incendiary phrase which remains used today to refer to something without substance or value.

This commercial stands the test of time; you can still find 50+ people jokingly asking, “Where’s the Beef?”!

Video: Where's the Beef?

Where’s the Beef?

2) 1984 (Apple) – Super Bowl XVIII

Apple is a tech powerhouse today, yet in the early 1980s, it struggled to gain any traction.

With director Ridley Scott’s assistance, Apple premiered “1984” during Super Bowl XVIII as an advertisement featuring a dystopian future as an homage to George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.

Apple’s commercial for its Macintosh computer saw sales soar. “1984” marked a new era in Super Bowl ads and remains one of the greatest advertisements ever shown during the “Big Game.” Nobody knew at the time how iconic what we were watching would become.

Video: 4K Restoration: 1984 Super Bowl APPLE MACINTOSH Ad by Ridley Scott

4K Restoration: 1984 Super Bowl APPLE MACINTOSH Ad by Ridley Scott

1) Hey Kid, Catch! (Coca-Cola) – Super Bowl XIV

Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle “Mean” Joe Greene was widely recognized as one of the fiercest competitors in the NFL.

Yet Mean Joe revealed his true colors in the iconic Super Bowl XIV commercial.

As Greene was limping back into the locker room, a kid offered him a bottle of Coke, which he reluctantly accepted and finished drinking entirely. Greene smiled broadly as the kid turned away in defeat before saying to them “Hey kid… catch” before tossing his jersey to the kid. Check out the top 10 Storylines headed into this years Super Bowl!

This iconic commercial demonstrated that Greene isn’t so intimidating after all; all you need is a Coke and a smile to have an enjoyable interaction. Plus Super Bowl XIV featured Mean Joe Greene and the Steel Curtain defence as they won yet another Super Bowl!

Video: Coca-Cola 'Mean Joe Greene'

Coca-Cola ‘Mean Joe Greene’

Honorable mentions

Charmin – Snap (2004)

Another company that used the Super Bowl as a theme to promote their product and did a great job doing it is Charmin. The company featured its bear mascot pranking players in the deciding moments of a football game. The ad tells how soft Charmin is, it’s so soft it can distract you from playing the game.

Family Guy – Super Bowl Promos (1999)

Family Guy producers did an outstanding job satirizing President Trump or just commenting on this epic sports event with all their Super Bowl promos.

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