Super Bowl XVL generates mixed conclusions on commercials

2011 Super Bowl XLV generates mixed conclusions on commercials

By Tyson Johnson

Eugene, OR — Criticism is not new for Super Bowl fans. Two days have passed since the most-watched television program in America’s history has elapsed and it is still generating debate.

On February 6, 2011, Super Bowl XLV was telecasted as usual on a Sunday; however, a portion of its 111 million viewers continue to question the game play and commercials displayed throughout the game. While the Green Bay Packers battled the favored Pittsburgh Steelers at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington TX, media outlets such as Fox News and has mixed opinions on it broadcast. That includes the commercials.

“Most of the commercials were pretty funny,” says Jacob Harper, a Lane Community College Student studying history and journalism. “[But] I don’t have any favorites. One of the commercials that I liked the best was the Dark Vader kid.”

Hank Stuever, a popular culture writer for the Washington Post, confirmed that the Volkswagen ad with the “Darth Vader Boy” was among the funniest displayed during Super Bowl XLV. Considering that an average 30 seconds worth of commercial airtime during the 2010 Super Bowl cost advertisers $2.6 million dollars, advertisers in 2011 attempted to draw in both young and old viewers with celebrities such as Slash, Justin Bieber, Ozzy Osbourne and the Black Eyed Peas.

“They (commercials) were mediocre this year [and] they weren’t as funny as I expected,” says Eric Rodgers, a Steelers fan who was born and raised in Eugene. I’m sick of the Bud Light [commercials], but I stayed and watched the game. Everyone in my crew stayed and watched it.”

Anheuser-Busch, a brewing company that owns Bud Light, spent roughly $3.5 million dollars on weekend expenses during Super Bowl XLV, which excludes their budget spent for commercials during the game. Although most companies exceeded budget for Super Bowl commercials in 2011, stocks in many companies continue to rise despite their consumer appreciation. According to the New York Times, Chrysler, CarMax, Volkswagen, and Sketchers Shoes were among the many corporations that revealed a rise in stocks following Super Bowl XLV.

Commercials displayed during the “big game” also had an impact on the global market. A humorous Camaro video dubbed “Wild Ride” had an estimated 119.6 million viewers worldwide, according to the New York Times and was one of the most watched commercials of all time. Last year’s most watched commercial was only viewed by 116.2 million people and quickly increased the stock of the popular chip, Doritos.

Are commercials becoming the essential demand for Super Bowl viewers in the 21st century or are global audiences actually intrigued by the outcome of the game?

“I just though the whole thing was distinctively unexciting, “says Nita Halstead, a University of Oregon student studying sociology and psychology. “All the advertising looked too tried [and] manipulative. They were not what they have been.”

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