I think Super Bowl ads have been kidnapped by the frustrated advertising creative departments that have kidnapped the budget for a one-day multi-million-dollar excursion into entertainment.
It's a boondoggle, a free trip on company expense.
I like the funny ads. I normally fast forward through the ads, but for the Super Bowl, I watch them first, to see what they've got, then fast forward through the less entertaining ads.
But I can't help remembering John Crawford, then-Dean of the School of Journalism at the University of Oregon, teaching that good ads made a point. Later that became USP, the unique selling proposition. Dean Crawford was an excellent teacher and a mensch, hardly your cold-blooded hard-sell advertising hack; but he also said that the best ads in history (this was 1971, so history extended 38 years less than now) were the toothpaste ads that made a selling point: "You'll wonder where the yellow went," and "cleans your breath while it cleans your teeth."
So I really liked the game yesterday, and I enjoyed a lot of the ads … but I'm just sayin' … can you remember who paid for them? Are you more likely to buy something because its maker paid $2 million to make you chuckle.
I think my all-time favorite Super Bowl ad was the herding cats ad of a couple of years ago. And I can't remember what it was advertising.