Super Bowl commercials fail to impress

Photo courtesy: Paramount+ / State Farm

The Super Bowl is known for many things, whether it’s football fans wanting to see the top two teams in the NFL go head-to-head or people wanting to see the famous halftime performance. Another thing Super Bowl viewers are excited for are the commercials.

According to CBS News, the average cost for a 30 second commercial during last Sunday’s Super Bowl was $7 million. The price does not include any celebrities who may be featured in the commercial.

 According to AP News, this year’s Super Bowl was the most-watched program to ever air in the United States with an average of 123.7 million viewers.

Typically, Super Bowl ads are funny and creative; they often feature some of the viewers’ favorite celebrities. The creativity, humor or celebrity special appearances in the commercials is what makes them memorable to viewers. The most memorable Super Bowl ads include the Betty White Snicker commercial (2010), which represents a celebrity appearance with a little humor as Betty White gets tackled playing football, Puppy Love Budweiser commercial (2014), which pulls at the viewer’s heart strings by showing a puppy and a horse’s unbreakable relationship, and Alexa Loses Her Voice commercial (2018), which was another celebrity appearance and humorous commercial featuring Cardi B, Gordon Ramsay, Rebel Wilson and Anthony Hopkins trying their best to help fill in for Alexa after she lost her voice. 

Other memorable Super Bowl commercials have become memorable because they spark something other than just viewing. In 1992, the Hare Jordan commercial featured Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny, the most popular athlete and cartoon character at the time and the commercial did so well that it was the inspiration behind the creation of the movie “Space Jam,” which remains a popular movie today. 

More recently, in 2023, the Tubi glitch ad was very popular. The ad was a prank on viewers because it started with the announcers on the Super Bowl welcoming everyone back to the Super Bowl making the viewers believe the commercials were over, then it logged out of the Super Bowl and scrolled and opened the Tubi app and selected a movie to play. This ad is memorable because it caused panic in households trying to discover who was changing the channel. It got even more popular after people posted their live reactions to the commercial on social media platforms and others were laughing at their reactions. 

The commercials featured in this year’s Super Bowl seemed to lack the humor or creativity shown in commercials from previous years. Instead of captivating the audience’s attention and sparking conversation, most of the ads fell flat.

To gain more insight, the Famuan interviewed two students to gain their thoughts on this year’s Super Bowl commercials.

“I feel like this year’s commercials were not memorable and just lacked creativity,” student Timia Williams said, “I only remember two commercials from 2024, if I’m being honest. For millions of dollars that go toward Super Bowl commercials, I couldn’t tell at all.” 

Similar to Timia, junior Keilan Simms said, “I remember when I used to look forward to the commercials. The only one I enjoyed was the Beyoncé/Verizon one.”

The Beyoncé and Verizon ad that Keilan referred to is one of the most popular ads from this year’s Super Bowl commercials. After the game, trending hashtags on X, formally known as Twitter, were #SuperBowl, #Beyoncé, and  #Usher.

In the ad, Beyoncé was trying different ways to break the internet and in the commercial her various ways were unsuccessful. At the end of the ad, she said, “They’re ready. Drop the new music.” And following the airing of the commercial, two new Beyoncé songs aired (during the Super Bowl) and rose to popularity quickly. And on Beyoncé’s official website she announced an album she will release on March 29. 

Other than Beyoncé’s ad, Super Bowl LVIII failed to impress viewers. Even after spending $7 million on screen time during the game they lacked the creativity to get the viewers talking about the commercials after they aired. Super Bowl LIX is set for Feb. 9, 2025, in New Orleans so hopefully companies interested in airing Super Bowl ads will ensure that their ads get the viewers’ attention.