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The Secret Handshake

Super Bowl Ads: The Greatest & The Crappiest

by Colin Wolf
Posted // 2012-02-03 -

Every year, Huffington Post or Yahoo News churns out a puffed-up list of the greatest Super Bowl commercials in existence. And every year, every list is identical to the next. I’m sorry, but that Budweiser frog commercial was horrible. So why is it that people keep circle jerking around the same crappy ads? I believe the answer lies in the fact that there are literally hundreds of archived ads out there and no one wants to watch them all again. Sooo, this week I drank 30 beers and watched every Super Bowl ad from the past 20 years. Here’s the result…

The Crappiest Ever…

5. 1991- Bugle Boys- The Go-Go’s "We Got The Beat"
Imagine you’re the only dude at a Go-Go’s reunion show in 1991. It’s laundry day and, unfortunately, all you had to wear were some crusty old Bugle Boys from 1982. In the middle of their hit song “We Got The Beat,” the band notices how ridiculous you look, stops playing and literally puts a spotlight on you so that they can make fun of your JC Penny jeans. Some dickhead at Bugle Boy thought it was worth spending $800,000 to make this nightmare a reality.

4. 1994- Pepsi "The Pepsi Deprivation Chamber"
Pepsi and Cindy Crawford had a great run with Super Bowl ads throughout the ‘90s that more than likely peaked in 1991. If there were ever a clear sign that a shark had been jumped, it had to have been in 1994 when Pepsi decided to give Cindy Crawford a geriatric sex change. I didn’t drink Pepsi for years after seeing this ad. Who wouldn’t want to be Rodney Dangerfield?

3. 1994- Converse "3 Point Land"
This was the seventh commercial installment of Larry Johnson’s pre-Madea character “Grandmama.” Originally, this ad was shot without knowing it was to get the Super Bowl treatment. But at the time, Converse was seeing steady growth and decided to foot the bill at the last second. It’s like a bad acid trip set in some warped land of OZ, where LJ doubles as an oversize slam-dunking grandma and a shoe gifting Mufasa. Don't forget about those evil midgets.

2. 1973- Noxema "Let Noxema Cream Your Face"
This ad features a beautiful Farrah Fawcett (pre-Charlie’s Angels) and a horny Joe Nammath. There are so many confusing innuendos going on here I don’t even know where to start. It's just wrong.  Little did anyone know, Broadway Joe thought every woman had a nice pair of hands.

1. 1993- Crystal Clear Pepsi
People still don’t believe me that Pepsi once made clear soda, and that the commercial featured a guy in a speedo diving into a cloud. Yup, it’s true and for some reason, there are a ton of pointless cliché statements like, “Right now, you’re wondering why you can’t see anything.” What that does that even mean? And more importantly, why the hell would anyone want clear cola? I only hope that Van Halen got paid with cases of this crap.

The Best Ever…

5. 1987-Diet Pepsi "Apartment 10G"
Apparently in the '80s, hot women loved Diet Pepsi as much as tweens love Axe. This ad was like watching a lost chapter to Bright Lights Big City. It was Michael J. Fox in his prime, or should I say, when he would stop at nothing to get laid? It even has Kenny Loggins rippin' it up in the background.

4. 1993 - McDonalds "The Showdown"
If this interaction actually did go down, Larry Bird would have destroyed MJ in a game of H.O.R.S.E. But fan-fiction aside, Michael Jordan looked awesome in that Theo Huxtable-inspired get-up. This ad inspired a grip of spin-off ads that included Charles Barkley, Lebron James and Dwight Howard. But none of the sequels were as good as the original.

3. 2007 - Sierra Mist "The Mist-Takes"
Sierra Mist made a great decision in the mid-2000s and formed a comedy ensemble dubbed the “Mist-Takes.” The original team included 3 pseudo-funny comedians from MadTV, Jim Gaffigan and Ian Michael Black. Besides the fact that barely anyone drinks Sierra Mist, these were still some of the best ads on TV. For the next couple of years everyone called Jim Gaffigan "that Sierra Mist guy."

2. 2008 - Budweiser "Wassup!!!"
I know a lot of people hated this ad, and that’s understandable. Haters gonna hate. But it’s had a lasting effect on my life because I still say “Wassup!!!” to some of my friends whenever we talk on the phone. Plus, I still wish I had a friend named Dookie. This ad was the best thing that Budweiser has ever done.

1. 2003- Reebok "Terry Tate - Office Linebacker”
Greatest. Ad. Ever. There’s even an Office Space shout out at 1:54. I would love to work in an office environment like Felcher and Sons. To John Saltas: City Weekly would benefit from a Terry Tate stalking the hallways. Think about it.

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