22 Best Super Bowl Commercials and Why They Are So Memorable

Super Bowl is America’s most-anticipated sporting event. But football teams and halftime performances aren’t the only things viewers are buzzing about, it’s the advertisements, too.

Many brands, businesses, and film studios take advantage of the wild viewership numbers the Super Bowl brings to the table.

According to a source, 99.18 million viewers tuned in to watch the event in 2022.

The halftime show features a live performance from the biggest stars and is an opportunity for brands to reach out to audiences with memorable commercials to cement their spot on the advertising wall of fame.

Let’s look back on some of the best Super Bowl commercials of all time in this post. If you want to quickly navigate to an ad, use the table of contents below.

PopCorners Breaking Good 60 – Super Bowl LVII

Frito-Lay reached out to Vince Gilligan (the head writer, executive producer, and director of Breaking Bad) and production company Interrogate to create this year’s Breaking Good PopCorners ad. It debuted at this year’s Super Bowl and has turned into a fan favorite.

People loved watching their favorite duo make an appearance. The whole setup was comical and it contrasted well with the actors’ intense delivery.

Why we love it:

  • Seeing a 43-year-old Aaron Paul deliver lines just as enthusiastically as he did when he was in his 20s felt great to see, especially as a Breaking Bad fan.
  • Everyone delivers a “tight” performance.
  • The ad certainly fulfills its goal because we’re craving a packet of PopCorners right now.

Fun fact:

The line “And a signature seasoning, yo” at the 16-second mark is a nice touch!


Lay’s Golden Memories – Super Bowl LVI

The Lay’s ad from the 2022 Super Bowl introduced the chip brand’s “Stay Golden” campaign.

Highdive is the creative agency behind the ad, and it features Paul Rudd and Seth Rogan. The duo is reminiscing about the past just moments before Seth ties the fictional knot.

The ad was written by Rogen and Evan Goldberg, who has also directed, written, and produced some of Rogen and Rudd’s movies. Goldberg was also the ad’s director.

Why we love it:

  • A montage in the ad features a song by Shania Twain (and we love Ms. Twain).
  • The unexpected reveal of who the bride is.
  • The friendship between Rudd and Rogen could even melt the Grinch’s heart.

Fun fact:

The ghoul’s name is Janet.

Doritos’ Free Doritos – Super Bowl XLIII

In 2009, two brothers—Joe and Dave Herbert—tried their luck and went on to win 1 million dollars when their commercial titled Free Doritos reached the number one spot on the Super Bowl Ad Meter survey.

The commercial features office workers who try to guess if they would be receiving the things they want by smashing a crystal ball.

Why we love it:

  • It is short
  • To the point
  • Humorous and has excellent acting

Fun fact:

This masterpiece came about because Frito-Lay Chips, the owner of Doritos held a “Crash The Super Bowl” promotional event from 2006 to 2016 allowing anyone to film their own Doritos commercial and submit it as an entry.


Rocket Mortgage’s Jason Momoa Commercial – Super Bowl LIV

Rocket Mortage produced this commercial for Super Bowl 2020 featuring actor Jason Momoa.

In the ad, we see that when Jason Momoa comes home, he can finally relax and do whatever he pleases.

He takes off his muscles and thick hair to showcase who he is from the inside: a skinny and balding person.

Why we love it:

  • The commercial is funny, but it is brimming of symbolism. It sends a message that having a home is a necessity, and it is where anyone feels the most comfortable through some cinematic trickery.
  • Signing up Jason Momoa for this commercial is a masterstroke because what another way would you choose to exhibit the real value of being comfortable in your skin.


Reebok’s Terry Tate: Office Linebacker – Super Bowl XXXVII

Terry Tate: Office Linebacker was a series of commercials created by Rawson Marshall Thurber for Reebok.

The ad shows that Terry Tate, played by Lester Spieght, is an enforcing linebacker sent from Reebok who tackles employees at Fletcher & Sons for breaking the office laws and disciplines them.

This commercial series proved to be very successful in outlining the idea of “thinking outside the box” by hiring a linebacker for the office for increasing productivity.

Why we love it:

  • Catchphrases like “The pain train’s comin’”, “You kill the joe, you make some mo’”, “You can’t cut the cheese wherever you please!”, “‘Cause when it’s game time, it’s pain time!”
  • Funny
  • Makes you ponder

Read more: Here’s What You Can Learn from Apple Commercials


Nike’s Hare Jordan – Super Bowl XXVI

Jim Riswold, the advertising legend, conceived this idea of one of the unlikeliest crossovers in the advertising world.

The ad shows Michael Jordan, an iconic Basketball player getting into a rivalry with Bugs Bunny, one of the most renowned Looney Tunes’ characters of all time.

Why we love it:

  • Michael Jordan and his iconic Air Jordans
  • Bugs Bunny
  • Amazing rivalry

Fun fact:

This pairing was unconventional, but it also led to a successful film in 1996, Warner Bros’ Space Jam. It went on to gross $230 million worldwide.


Budweiser’s Bud Bowl I – Super Bowl XXIII

Budweiser’s Bud Bowl was an advertising campaign for Super Bowl. Bud Bowl I was first aired in 1989 and it ran until 1997.

The creative team at D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles was charged with the vision of turning people into bottles of bud to create their own Super Bowl.

Why we love it:

  • The most novel thing about this commercial was the stop motion animation.
  • Though it took long hours to complete a few snippets of footage, it created an exciting experience.
  • Viewers would expect the Bud Bowl ads in which Budweiser bottles would play against Bud Light bottles in a Super Bowl of their own.

Also check out: The Best GEICO Commercials and Why They’re So Effective


Pepsi’s Diners – Super Bowl XXIX

Pepsi with the help of director Joe Pytka and BBDO Agency took a hilarious dig at Coca-Cola—their fierce soda rivals.

The ad flirts with the soda war idea by showing representatives of both brands trying to become acquaintances in a diner. The Coke rep tries Pepsi and refuses to hand it back which results in a brawl.

The commercial concludes the rivalry with the tagline “Nothing else is a Pepsi.”

Why we love it:

  • Throws major shade in a fun way
  • Catchy taglines

Fun fact:

This concept proved to be lucrative enough for Pepsi to repurpose it for Security Camera.


Volkswagen’s The Force – Super Bowl XLV

Donny Deutsch Advertising Inc. cashed in on an illustrious pop culture reference ”The Force” from the Star Wars franchise for this Super Bowl ad by Volkswagen’s Passat in 2011.

In the commercial, we see a boy donning a Darth Vader suit trying to use The Force on every household item. But he realizes that it doesn’t work on anything.

As soon as his father pulls up Volkswagen’s Passat in the driveway, the boy rushes to make another attempt using The Force. To his surprise, it works!

It is later revealed that it is in fact his father using the car remote control to make the magic happen.

Why we love it:

  • Star Wars references
  • Cute little Darth Vader
  • A unique approach to highlight the key aspect of the commercial

Fun facts:

  • The Force managed to score 15 million views the day after its release on YouTube.
  • It also ranked number one on Hulu’s Adzone 2011 poll.


Budweiser’s Brotherhood – Super Bowl XLVII

Budweiser has come up with exemplary Super Bowl advertisements over the years. But Brotherhood stands out.

In 2013, Anomaly created Brotherhood for Budweiser which evoked strong and positive emotions by showing a budding and meaningful relationship between a rancher and a young Budweiser Clydesdale.

Why we love it:

  • Beautiful Clydesdale horses
  • Emotional and heartwarming
  • Brotherhood almost threatened to knock The Force off its perch when it was first released.


Pringles’ Rick and Morty – Super Bowl LIV

Pringles teamed up with Rick and Morty to keep the tradition of flavor stacking alive through its advertisements.

In the animated commercial, Pringles’ robot is disguised as Morty and tries to oversell flavor stacking to Rick.

Rick suspects Morty’s motives and unmasks the robot to reveal that they are inside a Pringles commercial.

Why we love it:

  • Pringles paid homage to the show’s premise of the multiverse through flavor stacking, which worked.
  • It’s trippy and funny

Fun fact:

It has gathered 14.8 million views on YouTube so far.

Also, read: 15 Best Nike Commercials and Why They’re So Effective


Cheetos’ Can’t Touch This – Super Bowl LIV

Cheetos made an ad for the Super Bowl after a decade, and Harold Einstein directed the Can’t Touch This commercial.

In the ad, the main actor realizes that he can escape any social obligation because Cheetos Dust or Cheetle makes it a pretty messy situation.

Why we love it:

  • Throughout the commercial, we see that MC Hammer pops out and sings “Can’t Touch This” whenever he has to do some sort of helping out or work.
  • Relatable

Fun fact:

Can’t Touch This commercial has amassed 13 million views on YouTube.


Hyundai’s Smaht Pahk – Super Bowl LIV

Smaht Pahk was created by INNOCEAN USA for Hyundai in 2020.

The ad features celebrities including Chris Evans, John Krasinski, David Ortiz, and Rachel Dratch flexing their Boston accents.

It highlights Hyundai Sonata’s new smart park attribute.

Why we love it:

  • Captain America and almost Captain America together in one frame
  • Simple and humorous
  • Smaht Boston accents

Fun fact:

It has currently garnered over 44 million views on YouTube.


Budweiser/HBO’s Joust – Super Bowl LIII

Joust was a Super Bowl LIII ad created by Droga5 & Wieden+Kennedy for Budweiser and HBO in 2019.

The commercial is a crossover of HBO’s Game of Thrones and Budweiser’s “Dilly Dilly” ad series. Bud Light’s Knight participates and gets defeated by The Mountain of Game of Thrones in a joust.

A dragon also appears and breathes fire to burn everything down in an inferno.

Why we love it:

  • A crossover of two unlikely brands
  • Humorous and amazing video production
  • Unreal hype for Game of Thrones’ final season


Snickers’ You Are Not You When You’re Hungry – Super Bowl XLIV

You Are Not You When You’re Hungry was a Super Bowl XLIV commercial created by BBDO for Snickers in 2020.

In the ad, Betty White plays football and gets tackled to the ground.

A girl comes up to her and offers Snickers. Taking a bite, it turns out to be her boyfriend who was just hungry.

Why we love it:

  • Catchy tagline
  • Offbeat and creative
  • Betty White


Amazon’s Alexa Loses Her Voice – Super Bowl LII

Alexa Loses Her Voice was a Super Bowl LII commercial created by Lucky Generals for Amazon in 2018.

In the ad, Amazon’s AI, Alexa, loses her voice. Several celebrities including Cardi B, Gordon Ramsey, Rebel Wilson, and Sir Anthony Hopkins deputize for Alexa and refuse to answer users’ queries.

Why we love it:

  • Gordon Ramsey’s outrage
  • Sir Anthony Hopkin’s eerie monologue
  • Humor


Tide’s It’s a Tide Ad – Super Bowl LII

It’s a Tide Ad was a Super Bowl LII ad created by IAL Saatchi& Saatchi for Tide in 2018.

It’s a series of ads that takes a dig at every other Super Bowl commercial since each one of them features clean clothes which make all of them a Tide ad.

Why we love it:

  • David Harbour’s acting skills
  • Unique and comical


Supercell’s Clash of Clans: Revenge – Super Bowl XLIX

Clash of Clans: Revenge was a Super Bowl XLIX ad created by Barton F. Graf for Supercell in 2015.

The ad features Liam Neeson reprising his monologue from the movie Taken to prepare his revenge against an opponent in an online game of Clash of Clans.

Why we love it:

  • Liam Neeson playing a mobile game
  • Liam Neeson’s deep and menacing monologue from Taken


Chevrolet’s Happy Grad – Super Bowl XLVI

Happy Grad was a Super Bowl XLVI ad created by independent filmmakers for General Motors in 2012.

In the commercial, a boy assumes that his parents got him a Chevrolet Camaro as a graduation present.. The mortified parents don’t know how to clarify the situation. Then, the neighbor drives off in the car.

Why we love it:

  • Relatable humor
  • Simple idea

Fun fact:

The ad was created by independent filmmakers who won Chevrolet’s contest intended to air a user-generated commercial during the Super Bowl.


Apple’s 1984 – Super Bowl XVIII

Apple’s 1984 was a Super Bowl XVIII commercial directed by Ridley Scott and produced by TBWA for Apple in 1984.

The ad shows a dystopian universe.

A runner hurls a sledgehammer towards a large screen which symbolizes the end of the current regime (read IBM) and the dawn of Apple’s new Macintosh devices.

Why we love it:

  • Reference to George Orwell’s novel 1984
  • Amazing video production

Fun facts:


Budweiser’s Puppy Love – Super Bowl XLVIII

Puppy Love was a Super Bowl XLVIII commercial created by Anomaly for Budweiser in 2014.

In this heartwarming ad, two unlikely furry animals (a puppy and a Clydesdale) strike a friendship.

As one of them is getting adopted, they work together to prevent that from happening.

Why we love it:

  • It tugs on your heartstrings
  • Cute puppies and Clydesdale horses
  • Let Her Go by Passenger as the background song

Fun fact:

Puppy Love won 2014 Ad meter


Doritos’ Live the Flavor – Super Bowl XLI

Live the Flavor was a Super Bowl XLI commercial created by Wes Phillips & Dale Backus for Frito-lay in 2006.

In the ad, we see a young man driving his car around while eating Doritos.

He gets preoccupied and runs into an accident while checking out a girl on the sidewalk who trips as she approaches to help him.

Why we love it:

  • Created by independent consumers
  • Funny and creative

Fun fact:

This ad was also by one of the winners of the Crash The Super Bowl contest.


Final thoughts

A 30-second spot for one Super Bowl commercial costs around $7 million, but that insane amount of money did not hold brands back from vying to get slots.

These commercial spots help brands and advertisers with unprecedented airtime and viewership.

Social media platforms like YouTube have also helped Super Bowl commercials to go viral in recent times.

Many advertisers have managed to launch their careers in the commercial advertising industry.

So, if all these exciting video ads got you excited about creating one for your brand, then contact our video strategist today!

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Posted by Adil Ashraf

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