It's easy to make a good Super Bowl commercial.
All you need is one or more of the following: William Shatner, horses, a guy getting hit by a bus, magic chips, House of Pain's "Jump Around," McGyver and monkeys. People love monkeys. If I wrote advertising copy, no matter what the subject was, my ad would include at least one monkey and, if I could afford it, William Shatner.
It's also easy to make bad Super Bowl commercials. You saw several Sunday.
Incidentally, the idea that the tough economic times in which we live should somehow be reflected in the commercials is crazy. I've read that. I don't get it. I have never watched a commercial to try to make sense of the world in which I live.
If anything, I want to escape these economic times. That's why I did not bet on Pittsburgh to cover.
The worst five commercials of Super Bowl XLIII:
5: Monsters versus Aliens. Maybe this would have been good if I had brought my special 3D glasses but I think I left them somewhere, possibly in the 1960s.
4. GE. This one featured the scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz. He fell down a lot and sang, "If I only had a brain." The part cried for a monkey, perhaps two.
3. Overstock.com. Utah Jazz star and former Duke big man Carlos Boozer talks to impressionable kids about discounts and desire. Boozer is likeable, but on Super Bowl Sunday likeable does not suffice. The ad would have been considerably more memorable if it had featured Christian Laettner.
2. Toyota Venza, Toyota Tundra and "Get Furious." Not a good day for Toyota or the Furious sequel. The Toyota advertisements were neither clever nor creative and were more suited for a lower-level college bowl game, perhaps one played in Shreveport. The Furious ad featured Vin Diesel. I thought Vin Diesel was like MC Hammer or Vanilla Ice, a guy that was briefly famous before getting caught up in the swirling waters of obscurity and finally washing up in Branson, Missouri.
1. Bud Light. The drinkability ads in which an obnoxious guy with a magic pen draws stuff that becomes real as he extols the virtues of Bud Light have never worked. This might have worked if House of Pain played and monkeys and horses jumped around and William Shatner pontificated while McGyver got run over by a bus.
But I can't guarantee it.