So far, I’ve seen two new Super Bowl commercials which I admit I come to with complex reactions.
The first commercial is for the Mercedes AMG Roadster and was shot by the Coen Brothers of Raising Arizona, Fargo, No Country for Old Men, and Hail, Ceaser! fame. In many ways the ad is brilliant, but not one of my college freshmen in two classes had any idea what the joke was in it. Not one of them had any idea who Peter Fonda is or knew of the movie Easy Rider.
Now, I fully realize the ad wasn’t targeted at young people, but….
The second one here is for Budwieser beer and takes tells an edgy immigrant-oriented origin story for the beer and Anheuser-Busch brewery. It’s a particularly timely bit of branding given the news this week about President Trump’s immigration policy. The ad, of course, is not a corporate response to Trump’s executive order, as it was clearly in the works for months ahead of this week. It would seem to fit well into the “America” branding that Budweiser used over the summer. Because what’s more American than immigrants?
According to The Wall Street Journal, the company is not apologetic for the ad. “The story is the truth, it’s not fiction. This is what Budweiser stands for and we are really proud of it.”