Super Bowl XLV ads fall flat as expectations rise

Cal Young residents and workers share their thoughts on the ever-popular Super Bowl XLV commercials

By Eilise Ward

Super Bowl Sunday is a grand American tradition that unites football, music, and commercial fans alike to celebrate some of the years’ top performances in all three categories. This year, as the football heated up, the commercials seemed to fall flat as viewers expressed their disappointment.

On Sunday, February 6, 111 million viewers tuned in to watch Super Bowl XLV, which now makes it the most-watched TV program in United States’ history. The commercials have long been an iconic ingredient in what makes the Super Bowl so appealing, and high expectations are set for them year after year.

Benj Epstein, a Eugene man who was enjoying a coffee at Starbucks on Coburg Road said, “I didn’t have a dog in the fight but I kind of wanted Green Bay to win.” He said he finds the Super Bowl commercials entertaining and stays put during the breaks purposely to watch them. When asked if the advertisements lived up to their hype, Epstein said, “Most of the movie trailers were ineffective. Some of the commercials just did too much and lost their message.”

Brittany Miller watched the big game as a social experience, and she also reports that she was let down by  many of the commercials. “I thought they were funny at the beginning and then they kind of faded out. One that actually stood out to me was the Kim Kardashian one. I totally did not expect it to be about shoes. It seemed really sexual to be talking about Shape-Ups,” said Miller. She added that many of the commercials were disappointing and because of that, the Skechers Shape-Ups ad was really the only one that had an effect on her.

The Coca-Cola commercial featuring dragons grabbed the attention of Jesus Garcia, another Eugene resident. He said he didn’t think it  made any sense whatsoever, but it was still memorable. And creating memorable advertisements is what it’s all about; with 111 million viewers watching, advertisers have a few precious seconds to leave a lasting image in their minds. “I liked them okay but they were a little overproduced. I think they’re working on more  of a budget for ‘Wow!’ than they are to actually connect to people,” said  local Cal Young grocery store employee Joshua Gherenger. He said the majority of the commercials were unsuccessful in getting their message across to viewers, because he felt they were just trying too hard. He was, however, impressed with the E*Trade baby commercial featuring a baby giving advice on investments done through E*Trade.

Although most people tune in to watch the Super Bowl football game itself, the commercials it hosts have become a popular and growing feature of the annual tradition. The advertisements spark debate, discussion, and lively dialogue among viewers, fans, and critics alike as they strive to outdo past performances year after year. One can only guess what they may come up with for Super Bowl XLVI.

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