Tonight, Sunday, February 7, is the night the football fans across this great nation will get to indulge in the biggest game of the year: Super Bowl LV. This year, the Kansas City Chiefs will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Two teams will enter, one team will emerge as the winner. And sure, football is cool and all, but you know what’s even cooler and more exciting than the actual game? Super. Bowl. Commercials. Yeah, I said it.
I don’t know about you, but I love Super Bowl commercials. The actual Super Bowl? I could take it or leave it. But the commercials always hook me every single year. So, naturally, I’ve been keeping my eye on this year’s batch of Super Bowl commercials to see which spots have been released ahead of Sunday’s game. Usually, the commercials that get an early release help commercial fanatics like me gauge just how good any given year’s commercials crop will be. In general, I think this year’s Super Bowl commercials are a ton of fun, with some spots rising to the top as the best of the bunch.
Below, I’ve rounded up the best commercials of Super Bowl 2021. Keep scrolling to see which spots are top-notch.
Cadillac: “ScissorHandsFree” With Timothee Chalamet & Winona Ryder
One of this biggest surprises (in a good way) was the Cadillac Super Bowl commercial that dropped early on Sunday. The commercial, which is meant to sell us on the new LYRIQ model, stars Winona Ryder and Timothée Chalamet in an unofficial sequel to Edward Scissorhands. Ryder is back as Kim Boggs and Chalamet plays Edgar Scissorhands, Kim and Edward’s son. (Blessedly, there are zero references to the actor who played Edward in the 1990 Tim Burton movie.) Chalamet goes full Scissorhands for the commercial, maneuvering through scenes with those big, clunky hand props and looking like this most precious Gen Z goth boy on the planet. I think I….love this?
Amazon: “Alexa’s Body” With Michael B. Jordan
It’s still early to declare a bonafide winner among this year’s crop of Super Bowl commercials but Amazon’s ad for Alexa 2.0 starring Michael B. Jordan is definitely a frontrunner. I never thought a commercial could function as a thirst trap until I saw Jordan in this ad. Here, the Black Panther star plays an Alexa in human form — Michael B. Jordan’s form, to be precise — is a fantasy dreamt up by an Amazon employee. In this fantasy, the Jordan-shaped Alexa makes every command it’s given somehow way sexier than it needs to be. For example, it dims the lights by taking off its shirt and manages to turn the sprinklers on so high that things get really wet, really quick. Oh, and the commercial also features a brief reminder Jordan is starring in the upcoming feature film adaptation of Tom Clancy‘s Without Remorse, which is very cool but cannot compete with visions of abs swirling around in our heads.
Doritos: “Flat Matthew”
La La Land helmer Damien Chazelle directed two Super Bowl commercials this year, one for Squarespace and one for Doritos. While the Squarespace ad features Chazelle’s signature musical inclinations and a revamped version of Dolly Parton‘s song “9 to 5,” I would still say I prefer Chazelle’s Doritos commercial. Why? Because the commercial, which is intended to sell us Doritos 3D, focuses on a Flat Stanley version of Matthew McConaughey as he narrates just how lacking his life is in plain ol’ 2D. It’s McConaughey like you’ve never seen him before and it sure is fun to watch.
M&M’s Super Bowl Spot Featuring Dan Levy
It sure seems like this year’s Super Bowl weekend could easily be retitled “Dan Levy weekend.” On Saturday night, Levy hosted the newest episode of Saturday Night Live with musical guest Phoebe Bridgers. Now, on Sunday, we’ll be able to enjoy Levy in a Super Bowl spot featuring the M&M’s. Levy’s relationship with the iconic candy is a little contentious and, even as he tries to apologize to them for something he’s done, the commercial takes a hilarious turn that teases his apology might not be totally honest. It’s just a total hoot of a commercial and one that Levy makes even better with his presence.
Anheuser-Busch: “Let’s Grab a Beer”
David Fincher returns to the world of commercials to direct a stirring Super Bowl ad for Anheuser-Busch. Featuring a great score by Atticus Ross, this commercial introduces us to a cast of average Americans in various dramatic situations, with each scene showing us that there’s no such thing as a bad moment to crack open a cold one. This spot may not have celebs in it hocking a company’s wares, but it still packs a resonant, watchable punch thanks to Fincher and Ross’s work.
Uber Eats: “Wayne’s World & Cardi B’s Shameless Manipulation”
It’s a match made in Super Bowl commercial heaven: Wayne’s World stars Mike Myers and Dana Carvey meets Uber Eats. It feels so good to see Myers and Carvey resurrecting their iconic SNL characters, even if it’s for a cheesy Uber Eats campaign. Of course, this pair knocks it out of the park when it comes to capturing the spirit and energy of those old Wayne’s World sketches and movies. The spot is made even better with Cardi B joining the old-timers to have a little fun, too, all in the name of getting us to eat local. I don’t know about you, but I think this commercial is proof we need a Wayne’s World 3. (Just some food for thought.)
Cheetos: “It Wasn’t Me” With Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, & Shaggy
It’s hard to stifle the chuckles as you watch Cheetos’ Big Game spot, which stars beloved celeb couple Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, as well as 2000’s King of Music, Shaggy. This commercial sees Shaggy giving Kunis some critical advice as Kutcher keeps catching her in the act of…. eating his Cheetos? This commercial is a very good excuse to resurrect Shaggy’s still-catchy single “It Wasn’t Me,” which I’ll probably be playing on my Spotify for the rest of the week. Thanks, Cheetos!
Tide: “The Jason Alexander Hoodie”
It’s been a hot minute since Seinfeld alum Jason Alexander has appeared on our radars but, by Jove, he’s back! For their Super Bowl spot, Tide built a commercial around Alexander. Well, actually it’s Alexander’s face, which is printed on a teenager’s hoodie that is dirtier than it may seem based on all of his extracurricular activities. Good thing the power of Tide can clean up Alexander’s face so it’s ready for another day of teenage shenanigans.
Samuel Adams: “Horses”
Okay, so technically, there are no celebrities in this year’s Samuel Adams Super Bowl spot. But also, technically, there is a celebrity because it stars Your Cousin From Boston, the heart and soul of the company’s latest ad campaign. This Super Bowl spot revolves around horses and features one of the most gleefully irreverent plot twists of any commercial this year. Once you watch, you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.
State Farm: “Drake (& Paul Rudd) From State Farm”
It’s not often that a commercial makes my jaw drop, but State Farm’s Super Bowl spot managed to do exactly that. The basic set-up is this: Jake from State Farm, Aaron Rodgers, and Patrick Mahomes are sitting on the set of a State Farm commercial and watching production get set up. All three stars observe the actors who’ve been cast to play their doubles, with Rodgers not quite seeing the resemblance to his double and Mahomes’ double revealed to be none other than Paul Rudd. But the biggest twist is the camera cutting to reveal that Jake’s double is none other than Drake. Drake! Only on a Super Bowl commercial is this kind of magic possible.
General Motors: “No Way Norway” With Will Ferrell
You know what goes well with the high energy of the Super Bowl? Will Ferrell punching a globe. Actually, scratch that. What really goes well with the high energy of the Super Bowl is Will Ferrell racing around and recruiting Kenan Thompson and Awkwafina to help him in his mission to ensure the U.S. beats Norway in the number of electric cars produced per capita. Other commercial highlights include Ferrell catching an arrow in his teeth and yelling frantically, culminating in a chef’s kiss of a final shot that will give you major Eurovision vibes.
Miracle-Gro’s Big Game Spot Featuring John Travolta
I know that this Miracle-Gro commercial is meant to promote something and features some famous faces but honestly, the only thing I can think about is John Travolta doing the disco with his daughter and proving he’s still got it after all these years.
“Forget the past, this is your future!”
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