Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials
The Super Bowl has become the biggest, most-viewed TV spectacle of the year. Still, for many, the game itself isn’t reason enough to tune in. Neither is the promise of a superstar halftime performance. Instead, it’s the commercials. Humorous, star-studded, controversial and heartwarming, they’re often the highlight of the night. We look back on the Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials.
‘I Would Do Anything For Love, But I Won’t Do That’
Highlighted by a cover of the Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell classic, this ad for M&M’s found our favorite red, hard-shelled chocolate pitchman portraying the lengths he would go to for love. As it turns out, he draws the line at being placed in the oven or being eaten by a group of four different women at the same time: “It hurts, but I kinda like it!”
Directed by David Fincher, starring Brad Pitt and featuring the music of the Rolling Stones, Heineken went all out during Super Bowl XL to burnish the credentials of their pale lager. “Gimme Shelter” has been used a number of times to great effect by fellow director Martin Scorsese, who included it in his films Goodfellas, Casino and The Departed – but curiously, not his Stones documentary Shine a Light.
The next item on our Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials of the Past 10 Years aimed to highlight Audi’s clean diesel-burning A3 TDI with a little help from Cheap Trick, and the so-called “Green Police.” Best beware those Styrofoam cups and incandescent light bulbs because the Green Police are waiting for you, looking for you, every single night.
‘Cum on Feel the Noize’
Fact: Monkeys wearing clothes and pretending to be people are funny. You can debate all day about the existence of dark matter or Einstein’s theory of relativity, but this is incontrovertible truth. Career Builder played off this principle to hilarious effect during our next entry from the Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials of the Past 10 Years, combining it with Quiet Riot’s “Cum on Feel the Noize.”
‘Bang Your Head (Mental Health)’
This ad found Hyundai using another key moment from the 1983 classic Mental Health to highlight the sheer toughness of a gang of kids on the prowl for revenge. Cranked up power chords, bear-wrestling and cross-over SUVs? Doesn’t get much more balls to the wall than this entry on our Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials of the Past 10 Years.
‘Kickstart My Heart’
What’s better than a Super Bowl ad featuring a badass song from one of the greatest bands of all-time? How about a personal appearance by the members themselves? An assist from Motley Crue helped this Kia commercial go from the sleepy “Mr. Sandman” to the high-octane Dr. Feelgood classic, in an instant. “Oh, yeah, baby!”
‘Calling Dr. Love’
Dr. Pepper decided to spread the word about their new soft drink with a little “Kiss” of cherry with an endorsement from our favorite makeup-wearing hard-rockers and their own miniature doppelgangers. Trust that Gene Simmons knows what he’s talking about in this entry from our Top 10 Classic Rock Super Bowl Commercials of the Past 10 Years. After all, he is a doctor.
The scene opens on a lone rider in an Old West town. He strides into a saloon, floorboards creaking under his boots and growls, “Give me a Bud.” Uh-oh, they just ran out. Everything feels truly dire until a deliveryman bursts in with a full ice-cold case. Suddenly, with the suds running down the back of his throat, the scene shifts from High Noon to Almost Famous as the stranger and the rest of the bar croon along to the Elton John hit. It’s a turn that’s as unexpected as it is delightful.
‘Working for the Weekend’
You really can’t go wrong when you pair a great song with a veritable who’s who of hilarious ‘80s-era celebrity cameos. Special props to this Radio Shack ad for including Twisted Sister singer Dee Snider. Of course, this isn’t the first time that “Working for the Weekend” was used to great comedic effect on TV. The Patrick Swayze/Chris Farley Chippendales sketch where the two men perform competing stripper routines is one of the most memorable in Saturday Night Live history.
Whether Budweiser is the King of Beers is debatable. But they might just be the King of heartstring-pulling Super Bowl commercials. Stevie Nicks‘s “Landslide” was used to similar effect here by Budweiser, in an ad about the bonds of friendship. Feel free to swallow that lump in your throat when the rancher’s old Clydesdale traipses by without even as much as a look.