Super Bowl Ad Bets

I've got Super Bowl ad fever! It's basically acute diphtheria, minus the engorged lymph nodes but with a pronounced fungal component. The gals behind the desk at Dr. Sliffeninnin's office have tactfully broached the topic of organ donation.

Despite the tingling in my lower extremities and the metallic film on my tongue, I'm soldiering ahead with my plans for the (commercial) action between the (CTE-inducing) action. To sound learn-ed during the post-game debate, I've unveiled a new metric - engagementism, which quantifies the engagementist properties of each Super Bowl ad, as measured by retweets or something - which I'll spin into a brandable ranking scheme called the Engagementism Indexity. I'm even wagering a few of the shekels I get from penning this column.

No, I am. How inspiring is it that we can web-bet on Super Bowl commercials? And to think that some of our esteemed cultural critics believe we're teetering on the edge of an intellectual precipice. You'd think they've never watched Hillbilly Handfishin'.



Anyway, based on all the online previews/extended versions with unrated and too-hot-for-Texas outtakes/"supercuts" of Super Bowl commercials I've viewed over the past three days, here are the bets I've placed. Get in on the quasi-legal action while the gettin's good.

Likable personalities cashing in some of their likability capital (over 3.5): Hey, why wouldn't they? You would if you were them. Besides, if you're a seller of shiny or salty things, it beats pulling Jackée or a former member of Blossom's posse off the celebrity dungheap.

Car ads that could make me rethink my imminent purchase of a brand that is sitting out the Super Bowl (under .0002): The whole car-reorients-one's-perception-of-self thing - I don't get it. There's probably research that suggests I'm in the minority. Well, that research is DUMB and SMELLY.

Subtlety of metaphor in annual GoDaddy Super Bowl spot, as graded on a traditional 1-to-10 scale (my bet: 9, which translates as "exceptional"): Las Vegas seems to think that GoDaddy will ride the Botox stallion as far as it can, that it will again populate its spot with celebrimodels whose facial crevasses appear to have been filled in with putty. Me, I'm betting the contrarian line. This tease leads me to expect something that's less an ad than a meditation on nature and being. Write it down: there will be more sunset-silver oceans than gloss-slathered lips.

Morsels of transparent stoner bait (over 3.5): "Okay, so, like, there's this beer, and the bottle is all cool and sleek-like. And then this song starts playing, and it's cool and chill, and then there's this CGI fish [giggles], and it sort of sings the song? And then the voiceover guy comes in all serious and is like 'this is good beer and you should drink it and I am a beer authority person?' And it's like, yeah, I totally will, man."

Morsels of transparent hipster bait (over 3.5): At some point, ad makers have to realize that the people for whom they're making ads generally don't subscribe to their pop-cultural worldview, no? Next on overgeneralization theater: Spinsters treat their cats like people.

Promos for crime-y CBS procedurals in which a detective in a tailored v-neck t-shirt exclaims something of great urgency ("run!," "get down!," "that's not a radish! get down! and run!," etc.) to a detective in a tailored round-neck long-sleeved shirt (over 9): These detectives seem to draw a disproportionate share of cases in which there's some explicit or implied sexytime component. Their colleagues must be thinking, "Stubble guy gets to investigate the bimbo cotillion and I'm chasing down a stolen Jetta? Not fair."

Goofy, dim white guys singled out for cruel mockery owing to their status as members of the single acceptable-to-mock gender and ethnicity (over 28,750): To hear these ads tell it, me and my fellow Caucasian penis-havers aren't very smart; lack well-defined musculature; wear short-sleeve button-downs with ties; and frequently resort to using catapults, one-way mirrors and sleight of hand in order to secure six-packs of crappy domestic beer, rather than just buying it at the store on the corner. It's hurtful. Sometimes I wish we weren't so underrepresented in local, state and national government.

Ads that might actually keep me pinned to the couch during the game breaks, urgent bladder pressure or no (over 3.5): This one for Coca-Cola has a shot, if only for the glitter canon bit. Kia's ad will likely resonate, owing to the new-dad thing and the way-too-identifiable befuddlement that comes with it. There has to be at least two more good'uns, no? It won't be this (who are you? why are you here?), this (subtle!), this (the quest for youth has taken on a desperate air) or this (in my experience, burritos and horndog nonagenarians usually prove a lethal mix). Movie studios, this game is yours to win.

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