Can Super Bowl ads be art?
Why do we care so much about Super Bowl ads? Are they art, or simply very well-crafted (and incredibly expensive) sales pitches?
They're evidently important enough that Canadians want to see them during the broadcast — even though they're targeted primarily at American viewers and consumers.
Canadian stations have typically blacked out the ads on their broadcasts, showing local ads instead. But the CRTCplans to ban Canadian TV channels from blacking out U.S. Super Bowl ads in favour of Canadian ones, starting with the big game in early 2017.
Only Superbowl ads could get Canadians demanding less Canadian content on their screens, rather than more.
Today, two guests with very different opinions on the matter debate the ads that have become at least as important as the big game itself:
- Steve Almond is a writer, cultural critic, and author of Against Football: One Fan's Reluctant Manifesto.
- Michael Joffe is brand strategy lead at Google Canada.
Here are the ads discussed today:
First, perhaps the best-known Super Bowl ad ever, the 1984 spot for the Apple Macintosh computer:
This year, Drake continues to have fun with Hotline Bling in this T-Mobile spot:
Amy Schumer and Seth Rogan get patriotic (and make the easiest 'caucus' joke ever) in this Bud Light ad:
And Audi channels Davie Bowie's Starman. Too soon?