The Best and Worst Commercials of Super Bowl XLVIII: Seinfeld and Full House Reunions, Cow Sex, and More (VIDEO)

By Kaitlin Thomas

Feb 03, 2014

Ahhh, Super Bowl Sunday, the one day a year where we gather in our living rooms to drink beer and eat chicken wings and watch the 30- to 60-second mini movies that air between much longer and more boring movies about dudes tackling each other and throwing a weird-shaped ball around. Judging the commercials (and the halftime show) has long been the best and most exciting thing about the Big Game, which is why we've gathered most of them for you here. Which ones were your favorites? Which ones bombed? Which ones made you cry? Peruse our picks for best and worst ads of the day, then list your own in the comments!



THE BEST


Budweiser's Puppy + Horse = BFF


Some of you might be over puppies, but I'm not. Especially puppies who are best friends with horses. 


Volkswagen's "Wingy Thingys" and Rainbows


Let's be honest: The rainbow bit was good, but the men's room scene was even better. 


RadioShack's '80s Extravaganza


The '80s called. They want their stuff back. Brilliant. 


Doritos' Time Machine


Admit it, you laughed.


Hyundai's Fathers of the Year


A good example of sentimental done right. 


Cheerios' Puppy Negotiation


She drives a hard bargain, and I respect that. Also, more puppies!


H&M's (Nearly) Naked David Beckham


Some of you might protest the placement of this one, but I feel pretty confident that it's one of the best commercials in the history of commercials. It shouldn't be difficult to understand why. 


Stephen Colbert's Wonderful Pistachios One-two Punch



Stephen Colbert can do no wrong. 


TurboTax's Advice to... Skip Watching the Game and Do Your Taxes?


This whole series of John C. Reilly-voiced ads has been great, and this new Super Bowl-themed entry was no exception. 


T-Mobile and Tim Tebow's Celebration of Not Having a Contract


You gotta appreciate Tebow's willingness to laugh at himself. 


Butterfinger's Chocolate-covered Threesome


Nut-butt and Choco are gettin' racy. And we kinda like it, even if we're not so sure about the product itself. 


Ellen Dances to the Beats


This is kind of a weird one, but it's got Ellen DeGeneres dancing, and I'm not going to argue with that.


Crackle's Seinfeld Reunion


Well-played, guys. P.S. Here's the related full episode of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, "The Over-Cheer":





THE WORST


Chevy Silverado's Idea of "Romance"


Wait, what?


Hyundai's Johnny Galecki Flirting Fail


Kinda cute, but mostly boring.


Kia's Red Keys vs. Blue Keys


Matrix references? What year is it again?


Budweiser's Manipulative Homecoming


Call me a cynic, but beer commercials shouldn't make you cry. Especially by pandering to your sense of patriotism. Once you start doing this for all of our country's veterans independent of whether you can use the footage for a Super Bowl ad, then we can talk, Budweiser. 


Heinz's Fake Flatulent Grandma


Fart humor. Cool. 


GoDaddy's Attempt to Make Danica Patrick Unattractive


Still no, GoDaddy. Still. No.


Coca-Cola's Patriot Games


Yes, America is beautiful, but just like I didn't care for Budweiser's hero's welcome, I also didn't like Coke's "soda brings people together!" schtick. Also: A big fat WTF goes out to all the hatred this ad inspired on Twitter.

 

Axe for World Peace 



Sodastream and Scarlett Johannson

I love you, ScarJo, but I'm super over the idea of "all I have to do is take my clothes off and this will go viral."


Ford's Rob Riggle and James Franco Team-up


Yeah, I'm tired of James Franco. I can say that, right?  


Maserati's "Strike," Featuring Quvenzhané Wallis


Nothing against Wallis, but what was the point of having a 10-year-old headline a car commercial? More like strike OUT. (Do you need some aloe for that burn?)


Chevy's Surprise Guilt Trip


Okay, I'm going to hell, but this is not the type of commercial I want to see during the Super Bowl. First I thought it was just boring, then I realized the lady was a cancer survivor and thought "Oh, great, now I'm an asshole." 




NOT THE BEST, BUT NOT THE WORST, EITHER


Jaguar's British Villains


Maybe it would've been better if Tom Hiddleston was dressed as Loki?


Bud Light's Star-Studded Weirdness


Admittedly, we liked the the part with with Reggie Watts. But otherwise this series of spots wasn't as clever as Bud wanted it to be. 


Oikos Yogurt's Full House Reunion


Don't be gross, John Stamos. But oh, hey, Danny Tanner and Uncle Joey! 


Peanut M&M's Hostage Situation


Fine, okay, sure. 


Toyota's Muppets Road Trip

Well, who doesn't love the Muppets, right?


GoldieBlox' (via Intuit Quickbooks) Not-so-Quiet Riot


The company, which makes "engineering" toys for young girls, won their ad spot in Quickbooks' "Small Business, Big Game" contest and celebrated with cute kids and classic rock. 


Audi's Doberhuahua

Bonus points for the Sarah McLachlan cameo, but how does this sell a car?


CarMax's Slow Clap and Slow Bark


Any commercial with Sean "Rudy" Astin can't actually be considered a bad commercial...


...but the puppy version of the same ad is probably better, right?


Chobani's Yogurt-seeking Bear


I'm getting some conflicting information here. The bear ransacked the store in search of yogurt but was graceful enough to leave the Chobanis he didn't take neater than I've ever seen them stacked before? 


Squarespace's Post-apocalyptic Web

The internet, ladies and gentlemen!



Which of this year's ads were YOUR favorites?


  • Comments (77)
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  • rasa_radz Feb 06, 2014

    Was that Mandy Patinkin's voice in the Chobani yogurt commercial?

  • ktfahel Feb 06, 2014

    I put the ScarJo one in the same category as the Tebow one; they're both kind of laughing at themselves. At least I got the joke.

    Also, the "America the Beautiful" flack: I guess people were upset with "the National Anthem" being sung in different languages. NEWS FLASH, FOLKS! "America the Beautiful" is NOT our National Anthem"! My complaint about it is that it's not a particularly well-made commercial.

  • Plonked Feb 06, 2014

    Seriously, these were the best? I look forward to these ads every year this year I have to say I am disappointed big time.

  • funnyl3unni Feb 05, 2014

    My best and worst are both from Budweiser.
    Best: Obviously anything with a puppy will tug at my heart strings, so add a horse and some horse puppy play and I'm all in.
    Worst: I completely agree with the review on "A Hero's Welcome." The premise I wholeheartedly am on board with. I think Veterans should be celebrated every day, not when it's convenient (aka the Superbowl when everyone is watching to make you look like you care and such when it's a PR ploy). Also, I don't want to ball my eyes out while I'm watching commercials.

  • mad-pac Feb 05, 2014

    The other day the 80s called me and they wanted my clothes back. That was embarrassing...

    To me the best ones were the Radio Shack "the 80s called" and the Seinfeld + George one, except that I have no idea what show Seinfeld was advertising, so Radio Shack wins. It's interesting that my two favorite commercials were based on nostalgia.

    These two work if you were there at the time, otherwise they don't. I remember the 1980s very well, I even lived in the US for a while, and both times I went there (1970s and 1980s), Radio Shack was a reference because I was always fond of technology. I even bought a pocket stereo cassette recorder in 79, and back then that was as cool as an iPhone 5. So, that commercial spoke directly to people from my generation.

  • safibwana Feb 04, 2014

    Wow those CarMax ads are bad.

  • lynna12000 Feb 04, 2014

    The Budweiser commercial with the Clydesdale and the Puppy, the Cheerios, and the Coke commercials were awesome. I've always liked the Clydesdales commercials Budweiser has done, and this one was very well done. The little girl in the Cheerios commercial was a tough negotiator. What made so awesome was the look on her Mom's face. I appreciated the Coke commercial from the perspective of a former Army brat. It's nice to find a point of commonality, even in a foreign language. Coke just found another way to teach the world to sing......

  • smorbie Feb 04, 2014

    I agree about the coke commercial. It was a lovely way to remind us that this is a nation built by immigrants. We are all the children of other lands and still all Americans.

  • gmanBegins Feb 04, 2014

    Worst Super Bowl Sunday Commercials EVER!!!

  • smorbie Feb 04, 2014

    I didn't care for the, I think Volkswagon commercial or the one featuring flatulence. I think they contribute to a coarsening of our culture. If I had young children, I would not allow them to refer to anything flying out of people's rear ends. It's not funny; it's just base, the lowest form of entertainment.

  • gmanBegins Feb 06, 2014

    agreed!!

  • antdude Feb 04, 2014

    Weak commercials for this year compared to previous years.

  • AustinMak Feb 04, 2014

    Yeah... you're wrong. TurboTax and Budweiser sucked ("Let Her Go", REALLY?). Coca Cola's inclusive (towards non-white people and LGBT) America The Beautiful was easily the best.

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