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The Super Bowl Classics: Ghost of Commercials Past

Posted February 4, 2011 - By Jacklin Maisyan

On an average day, nobody likes watching the commercials for a television program. On Super Bowl Sunday, the commercials are the best part. With the big game just around the corner, we’ve decided to take a look back at the greatest commercials in Super Bowl history.

1. Apple (1984)

Apple’s 1984 ad from, you guessed it, 1984 is probably the most recognized Super Bowl ad of all time. It’s clever, intense, and most importantly, original. No sexual innuendo, no over-hyped shock value. It blurs the heavy line between product advertisements and pure entertainment and for that one minute, you forget you’re watching a commercial. Plus, being an Apple commercial, it is totally ironic and hipster. A commercial about not following the crowd, being an individual, and buying an Apple product. LOLZ. Love it.

2. Budweiser (2000)

This Budweiser commercial is no doubt one of the most iconic and important symbols of the year 2000. The quotable “wazzap” brought together a nation. Friends, foes, old, and young. We all joined forces to make this the most sensationally overused, grossly hackneyed, and stunningly empty-headed phrase for years and years (and years and years) to come. Thank you, Budweiser.

3. Xerox (1977)

All right, so this may sound just a tad presumptuous, but I’m pretty sure that this 1977 Xerox commercial is a social commentary on the historic significance of an increasingly printed culture. No? Fine. But there’s no denying it boasts the most stylish bowl haircuts you’ve ever seen. And an added bonus, it uses the phrase “duplicating machine” which is so much better than copy machine.

4. McDonald’s (1993)

You want to play me for the Big Mac Larry Bird is playing Michael Jordan for in this commercial? Off the floor, off the monitor, off my coworker’s desk, off the copy machine, through the break room, into the parking lot, off my car (no rim), stop by café, get a coffee, off the sidewalk, and straight into my list of best commercials of all time.

5. Budweiser (1995)

Simple, straight to the point, and catchy. This Budweiser ad displays the most successful pop song formula in a beer commercial. You think if we asked nicely enough, Lady Gaga would sing a cover of this song? She could even don her Kermit the Frog costume.

6. Coca Cola (1979)

Nothing on Earth is more inspirational than Mean Joe Greene’s “Hey kid…catch.” Chills. But has anyone else noticed that the little man in this ad commits some pretty remarkable crimes? Trespassing on the field during the Super Bowl. Stalking Mean Joe into the locker room tunnel. The badassery of these thinly veiled felonies have never been recognized, and that’s why Coke’s 1979 Super Bowl spot takes number six on our list.

7. Mountain Dew (2000)

A man races, tackles, and wrestles a cheetah, literally shoves his hand down this feline’s throat, and pulls out a can of soda. Cue tribal drum, more cheetah action, and a snappy retort and you’ve got Mountain Dew’s 2000 Super Bowl commercial. Not one of the most rational advertisements, sure, but definitely one of the coolest EVAR.

8. Bud Light (2006)

Do you believe in magic, in a frat boy’s heart? You will after watching this heart warming commercial about friendship, magic, and beer. Anyone who didn’t refer to their refrigerator as “magic fridge” for a whole year after this, clearly, has no sense of humor. Or refrigerator.

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