Commentary: Super Bowl LV’s Most Memorable Commercials


Photo credit/ Courtesy of Toyota

Photography Editor Thomas Kerrigan says Toyota’s telling of Paralympic swimmer Jessica Long’s life story was hard commercial to beat this year.

Thomas Kerrigan, Photography Editor

It’s that time of year again when the country’s most-watched event airs on television. Super Bowl LV will attract nearly 150 million viewers if numbers are like last year. And since the halftime show was a bust, there was only one form of entertainment for those of us not interested in sports, the commercials.

Commercial spots for this year’s Super Bowl costed $5.5 million, down $100,000 from last year. Surprisingly, some still missed the mark. However, there were other commercials that will go down in history as being memorable.

Here are my top ten picks for Super Bowl LV commercials:

1. Jessica Long‘s Story | Upstream

Toyota comes out on top this year in the number one slot with their tear-jerking, one-minute commercial featuring Paralympic swimmer Jessica Long. The decorated Paralympian was adopted from a Siberian orphanage at 13 months old and had to have her legs amputated just before she was two years old. Starting competitive swimming at the age of ten, she attended her first Paralympics in Athens in 2004. She is expected to swim this summer in Tokyo. The execution of the commercial is perfectly creative and is on par with some of the best ever premiering in the Super Bowl.

2. Certain Is Better


This next commercial really highlights the humor that is often present in these commercials. Rocket Mortgage’s big game commercial features comedian Tracy Morgan asking a family if they’re sure or pretty sure they can afford a house and then proceeds to demonstrate the difference. The commercial is comedy gold, and Morgan’s expression at the end really hits it out of the park.

3. No Way Norway

GM is making waves with its new dedication to electric vehicles. During the next five years, the company will invest $25 billion into the development of 30 electric vehicles by 2025. There’s just one problem, Norway is selling more electric vehicles per capita than the United States. Comedic geniuses Will Ferrell, Tracy Morgan, and Awkwafina decide to travel to Norway to show them who’s boss but encounter a bit of trouble getting there.

4. Come Together

M&M’s always comes out with a good commercial. When people make mistakes, nothing smooths things over like a pack of M&M’s. Daniel Levy, co-creator, and star of Schitt’s Creek appears at the end of the commercial, but probably bites off a little more than he can chew. Offering M&M’s to an M&M probably won’t go over that well.

5. The Rising

Indeed, a job finding website and app broke into the Super Bowl commercial market this year with an $11 million advertisement showing people searching for and getting jobs through their platform. This is probably the most relevant commercial during this COVID-19 era while the unemployment rate is at 6.3% according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics. It sparks a similar tone to last year’s New York Life commercial.

6. Let’s Grab a Beer

Anheuser-Busch premiered a commercial showing the moments where you might want to go out with your friends and grab a cold one. The commercial is dedicated to “meaningful moments – big and small – that happen when we come together over a beer.” This commercial not only helps us remember a time where we could gather together, but also makes us excited to be together again.

7. Inspire Change

The NFL’s most powerful commercial of the night was about their new dedication to ending systematic racism. The NFL will be spending $250 million to the cause. The commercial encourages all NFL fans to “create change and advance social justice.” The long-overdue program was created after protests on and off the field following Commissioner Roger Goodell’s video release last June.

8. Alexa’s Body

Amazon created a new body for the popular voice assistant Alexa. Some call it sleek while others even call it sexy. But a woman imagines an even better body design for Alexa in the form of Michael B. Jordan. Let’s just say her husband isn’t a fan.

9. Team Anthony Anderson vs. Team Mama

T-Mobile brings in Blackish Star Anthony Anderson and his mom for a friendly flag football game that turns a bit too competitive. Begging the question: what other network would you trust with your family drama?

10. The Middle

Jeep barely makes the list this year in the last place. Compared to last year’s “Groundhog Day” commercial with Bill Murray, this one misses the mark completely. Jeep attempts to unite people by bringing them together in the country’s center and reminding them that “the very soil we stand on is common ground”. But America is more divided now than ever before. And it didn’t help that there wasn’t any representation of different people, genders, or races in the ad. The only reason Jeep made the number ten spot is because of its stunning technical work and production quality demonstrated in the commercial.

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