Playing It Safe: This Year’s Super Bowl Ads Are Resoundingly Sentimental

Playing It Safe: This Year’s Super Bowl Ads Are Resoundingly Sentimental

If there’s one theme that stood out in this year’s crop of Super Bowl ads, it’s this – sweet and sentimental.

With almost 50 minutes of ad time during the Super Bowl, most brands chose to play it safe, focusing on themes such as nostalgia, women-focused ads and bizarrely, sad robots.

Viewers hoping brands would take a daring stance on sociopolitical issues were left disappointed.

While there were some exceptions, like Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale ad, which referenced the 1984 Ronald Raegan “Morning in America” ad, most brands played it safe with either humorous or sentimental ads.

Advertisers seemed determined to stay away from controversy for a second year after politically tainted ads stole the show in 2017.

In 2017, advertisers such as Expedia, Budweiser and 84 Lumber directly focused on the top of immigration after Trump signed an executive order banning individuals from several mostly Muslim nations.

No ad dared go so far this year.

Zambezi partner and CCO Gavin Lester told Adweek brands “clearly stayed away from pressing societal issues or anything that felt remotely political” because they “recognised that viewers could use a break, some levity and fun” in the midst of the political coverage people encounter every other day.

From sentimental and humorous to down-right boring bizarre, check out B&T’s best and worst of the Super Bowl ads below.


Game of Thrones X Bud Light

Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale


Pepi’s More Than OK


DEVOUR Food Porn

TurboTax’s “Robo Child”

BON & VIV Spiked Seltzer

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