Who knows anything about American Football? Not me, that’s for sure. I once stayed up till God knows what hour because of the allure of Lady Gaga’s halftime show and the excellent snacks.

But this year I joined the hordes of UK ad folk who like a next-morning snoop at what the big brands chucked all their money at. 

So, here’s a wee roundup. Some scored high, some made decent passes, and some were downright offensive. (See what I did there.) 

First up: Pepsi

Featuring Steve Carrell, some rapper person and Cardi B getting defensive. 

Cleverly jumping on the classic line ‘Is Pepsi okay?’ uttered by uninterested waiting staff all over the world, this ad proves that Pepsi is more than just an okay alternative to its big rival. Bringing in two artists who apparently use ‘okay’ as their catchphrase and Steve Carrell building a case to the bemused waiter that he should be proud to offer Pepsi instead of Coke, the American diner scene ends with a woman specifically ordering a Pepsi rather than a Coke. 

I’ve watched both the full ad and the cut, and unfortunately the cut doesn’t make much sense or get the idea across. Saying that, I like the insight and Steve Carrell is funny. But when is he not?

Watch here

Next: Stella Artois

What’s the American Football alternative for big ole swing and a miss?

The concept of this ad isn’t the worst but it’s fairly unimaginative. Getting well-known tv characters who are associated with a certain beverage and get them to *shockingly* change their order to a Stella. But what I can’t believe is that they managed to secure Sarah Jessica Parker to reprise her Sex and the City socialite role of Carrie, and Jeff Bridges to come back and play The Dude. In my opinion, the script is nowhere near clever enough to earn those two stars’ involvement and I feel like they could have done much more with them. And just as a nippy art direction thing, Jeff Bridges is holding a clearly empty glass bottle. 

[Edit] I’ve just read another article about it. Apparently, it’s trying to encourage people to buy the drink as part of its campaign donating water. I get it more now but that’s not clear and the script is still dull. 

But hey, judge for yourselves: 

Watch here

Now: Amazon Alexa

Bloody lovely spot for everyone’s favourite robot assistant. 

While the celebrity involvement in this is much more random than the others chosen for their characters or catchphrases, it somehow really works. 

We see Amazon execs chatting about how Alexa is being installed in loads of different devices to make life easier. However, many of the things developed have had less than their desired effect and hilarity ensues. 

Genuinely funny, well-acted, nice idea. Let me see if I get this right... TOUCHDOWN!

Watch here

One more: The Washington Post

Super Bowl ads are either funny or worthy. This is the latter. 

A nicely written VO delivered by the dreamy voice of Tom Hanks, highlighting the need for real journalism at all costs for the sake of democracy. Topical, but perhaps a little highbrow for who it’s aimed at. 

Watch here

And why not: Pampers

Is this just because I love Chrissy Tiegen? Probably. 

Awk it’s fluffy and cute. I’m not sure it needed Adam Levine in it but I’m guessing it was because he was singing at halftime. I also enjoy the wearing of multiple papooses, given the eruption a couple of months ago about how ‘emasculating’ they are. 

Watch here

But one of my favourite outputs of the night was the pre-rolls created for Northgate Market. In snazzy guerrilla fashion they stole the thunder of every big players ads by creating their pre-rolls in the same style of the ad to come that stated, ‘You can buy the product in the next ad at ‘Northgate Market’. Cute. 

Watch here

One line reviews

Bud Light: Why are you promoting Game of Thrones?
Bumble: Nice idea, but the link between Serena pushing her tennis career and people finding love/pals/connections is a bit tenuous.
Burger King: Andy Warhol eating a burger. That’s it. 
Microsoft: Lovely product, standard ad.
NFL: Nice, probably means more to fans. 
Hyundai: Laughed until I realised what it was for.