12 Best Super Bowl Ads Featuring Animalscountdown
Every year, there are Super Bowl viewers who insist they watch only for the commercials. After all, the big game is when the big companies roll out the big guns (and spend the big bucks) for their advertising. In the history of big-ticket Super Bowl ads, plenty of agencies have employed the can't-miss strategy of making funny animal commercials. Here are the best of the best animal Super Bowl ads.
11. BUDWEISER CLYDESDALES (1933-infinity)
The Budweiser Clydesdales actually predate the Super Bowl by quite a bit. Super Bowl I was held in 1967, but the Clydesdales made their debut all the way back in 1933, when prohibition ended in America. The horses are symbols for Budweiser in general, but they earn a place on this list because a Clydesdale ad airing during the Super Bowl has been a tradition for decades. In 2010, Budweiser chose not to air a Clydesdale ad during the big game, but widespread public outcry brought the majestic steeds back the following year.
10. DORITOS MOUSETRAP (2008)
Doritos generates a lot of attention with its annual “Crash the Super Bowl” contest. Since 2007, Doritos has outsourced the job of creating its Super Bowl commercial to fans. Five finalists are chosen, fans vote on the best, and the winner airs during the game. Billy Federighi’s “Mousetrap” was a finalist from the original contest, but didn’t win. Doritos knew a fine commercial when they saw it, though, and chose to air it during the Super Bowl anyway -- the following year.
9. PEPSI BEARS (2004)
Pepsi has long been a mainstay of Super Bowl ad breaks, and their 2004 commercial featuring a pair of thirsty grizzlies is an all-time favorite. Admittedly, there are logic problems. For example, why are the bears comfortable with breaking and entering and ransacking the cabin, but they resort to slick disguises at the convenience store? Don’t think too much about it, though. It’s grizzly bears wearing people clothes! It’s hilarious!
8. FEDEX CARRIER PIGEONS (2008)
To create the monstrous pigeons in this classic Super Bowl commercial, 21 CGI artists put in 1,000 hours of work. And although obviously the commercial features extensive computer-generated special effects, there were actually 225 real pigeons on the set. But don’t worry; the American Humane Society was on hand to make sure all of them were treated well.
7. TOYOTA BADGERS (2008)
“Why am I being shoved into a Toyota by white-gloved majordomos?” the young man in this ad must be thinking. Be careful about answering Craigslist ads, dude. That’s how you end up in a close encounter with an angry mama badger. Seriously, though, we know the badgers aren’t real. It’s movie magic! But it might still be a good idea to tread lightly around badger setts so you don’t disturb them. And put your phones on vibrate. Badgers really can be quite fierce.
6. WEEGO THE RESCUE DOG (2012)
Weego, the rescue dog who fetches beer whenever someone utters Bud Light’s “here we go” catchphrase (“here, Weego,” get it?) was the toast of last year’s Super Bowl ads. Not only was his commercial funny, but full of genuine good will. The dog was played by a real rescue dog, according to Bud Light, and for every “like” the dog received on Facebook, Bud donated money to Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation, ARF. Even PETA approved, lauding the commercial and its plea to visit Bud Light’s “Help Rescue Dogs” Facebook page.
5. TABASCO MOSQUITO (1998)
This well-regarded ad delighted both mainstream audiences and the advertising elite when it ran during Super Bowl XXXII in 1998. It went on to win a Cannes Gold Lion advertising award. Meanwhile, in the States, it ignited a trend of dribbling hot sauce on pizza. All because of a mosquito that met its end suddenly but gloriously. It’s better to spontaneously combust from hot sauce than to fade away.
4. SPUDS MACKENZIE (1987)
It’s the original party animal! Like Joe Camel before him, Spuds MacKenzie presented a product for adults in a fun, easy-going manner that was accessible to children. Although the original Spuds MacKenzie spot ran during Super Bowl XXI, the hard-partying Bull Terrier's popularity continued for years, and spun off all manner of merchandise, making him an immortal icon of the 1980s. Secretly, “Spuds MacKenzie” was a female named Honey Tree Evil Eye. She died May 31, 1993 at the age of 9.
3. CAREERBUILDER CHIMPS (2005)
CareerBuilder made a splash during Super Bowl XXXIX when it premiered it’s first “chimp office” commercial. The spot was an instant hit and the chimps returned the following year, but amid protest from animal-rights groups, the spots went away for a while. Last year, though, CareerBuilder chose to return to the chimps concept. “The chimpanzees were brought back by popular demand,” Jennifer Grasz, a CareerBuilder spokesperson, told Forbes last year. “It’s been a very successful campaign that job seekers identify with and act upon.” But protests continued, and the chimps are taking this year off.
2. EDS CAT HERDERS (2000)
The “cat herders” commercial is one of the best remembered of all Super Bowl ads, animal-related or not. Back in 2000, audiences were taken with the ad's cowboys (catboys?) discussing their family history of herding American shorthairs. It was widely considered to be the most entertaining new ad of that year’s crop. Then again, most people may have trouble remembering what it was an advertisement for. The ad seemed to have little to say about Electronic Data Systems, a company which no longer even exists today, having been absorbed by Hewlett Packard in 2008.
1. BUDWEISER FROGS (1995)
The King of Beers spawned the King of Super Bowl Ads with this spot in 1995. The Budweiser frogs caught on in a huge way, and remained in Bud ads regularly for years. How were people entertained for years by three frogs saying “bud,” “weis,” and “er”? They weren’t exactly. But other characters were added to the ads over time, most notably Frankie and Louie, two talking chameleons with Brooklyn accents who soon overshadowed the frogs in prominence.