The Coen Brothers Have Directed A Super Bowl Ad For The First Time In 15 Years

  • Rick Chandler


The Super Bowl commercials to start rolling in, and Sportsgrid is here to give you the lowdown. Yes, spoilers, beware! At approximately $5 million per 30 seconds, companies are going all out to sell you the American Dream … plus there will be snacks. As the new spots come out, we’ll be keeping you up to date right here, and when we get enough full ads we’ll rank ’em. Check back every day until Feb. 5.


* Mercedes-Benz The Coen Brothers debut their first Super Bowl ad since 2002. Ya. Just ask Stan Grossman, he’ll tell ya that’s the way to go here.

* Yellow Tail is the first Super Bowl ad for wine in 29 years.

* Melissa McCarthy is stuck on an ice floe in a Kia. Damn global warming.

The Full Ads

With films such as Fargo, Raising Arizona and The Big Lebowski, the Coen Brothers are nearly as iconic as Peter Fonda and the 1969 classic Easy Rider. Now the three come together for a Super Bowl commercial. The Coens wrote and directed this one, for Mercedes-Benz, their first since making a Super Bowl ad for H&R Block in 2002. AdWeek:

“Peter Fonda plays a critical piece of the storyline, and he’s known as someone who still epitomizes what it is to love driving performance and the open road,” said Drew Slaven, vice president of marketing for Mercedes-Benz USA. “… The film [Easy Rider] component goes back 48 years. We thought there was a nice parallel that was set up between the era of that and what was, in 1967, the beginnings of AMG.”

The Coens also directed a spot for Honda 18 years ago.

Believe it or not, Mr. Clean is coming up on his 60th anniversary next year. Making his debut in 1958, the Procter & Gamble cleaning product was invented by the owner of a shipping line who needed a non-toxic cleaning product that wouldn’t make his workers sick.

Mr. Clean immediately became the top-selling household cleaner on the market. Its mascot, the smiling genie-in-a-cleaning-bottle, has changed little in 59 years — in appearance, anyway. This year Procter & Gamble has introduced a new, sexy Mr. Clean, a detergent gigolo who just may seduce your wife if you’re not vigilant. In its Super Bowl debut, Procter & Gamble gives us the new Mr. Clean. I feel a little ill:

Skittles checks in with their new ad, and it’s an upgrade from last year’s bizarre Steven Tyler nightmare-inducer. “Katy! …”

Yellow Tail got around Anheuser-Busch’s exclusive rights to alcohol advertising in the Big Game by doing this regional ad, which will be seen in 80 percent of the country.

TurboTax is back for the fourth consecutive year with a 45-second spot, starring Humpty Dumpty.

Wix would like to remind you that it’s easy to make your own stunning web site. Although what that has to do with busting up a restaurant is unclear.

Intel apparently thinks that people will watch Tom Brady do anything — even brush his teeth before eating a pancake off of the floor. After taking it away from a dog. I would have re-thought this one.

Teaser Trailers

Febreze is another Procter & Gamble product, this one which probes the phenomenon of the Halftime Bathroom break. Includes stock footage of a buffalo stampede so you know its good.

We don’t know exactly how this is going to work, but Snickers‘ 30-second spot will be live to lead off the third quarter of the game. It will feature Adam Driver (Kylo Ren in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and be preceded by a 36-hour livestream, at (noon ET on Thursday, Feb. 2, until midnight Friday night. Here are four teasers, combined for your convenience. None of it makes any sense so far.

GoDaddy is under new management (a new ad agency), and is back after skipping Super Bowl 50. According to AdAge, the ad will go like this: “In GoDaddy’s commercial, we will be introduced to the ‘Internet,’ who is covered in tattoos of web references, like Wi-Fi symbols, memes and floppy discs. The 30-second game day spot will include a look inside the house of the ‘Internet’ and will feature a song made popular by the internet. While most of the references included in the commercial will be recognizable to a broad audience, there will be some more obscure references hidden throughout.”

Avocados From Mexico is back, and the ad — to be shown during the first commercial break of the game — will focus on the avocado being a health food. Since more avocados are consumed during the Super Bowl than during any other time of the year, it’s surprising that AFM have only been in the past three big games. Here’s the teaser trailer, featuring Jon Lovitz:

Kia is going to make you wait awhile to see what’s chasing Melissa McCarthy. In another trailer, she’s stuck on an iceberg.

PepsiCo will be touting its line of bottled water products, Lifewtr, with its Inspiration Drops spot. Featured will be a song by John Legend.

Not participating this year

Butterfinger, Doritos, Mini USA, SunTrust, Taco Bell, Toyota, Visa. Heinz, which gave us the entertaining Weiner Stampede during last year’s game, is also not returning to the Super Bowl. But they saved a few mil by running an ad right after the game, and releasing an extended version online (which may be the wave of the future). Heinz has started a petition to make the day after the Super Bowl and national holiday.

Thanks to AdWeek, AdAge, USA Today, Super Bowl Ads.