Super Bowl XLI; Update: Commercials galore; Update: NYT: Violent ads = Iraq metaphor

Two hours until kickoff and the pre-game show’s already two and a half hours old. Consider this your official HA SBXLI open thread, although its real purpose is to act as a repository for commercials I’ll be posting throughout the game. Expect the updates to start coming fast and furious around 7 p.m. ET. I’m asking for our readers’ help on that, too: if you see something clipworthy and you’re by a computer, we’d be most grateful if you shot us an e-mail at tips -at- Time cues would be helpful, e.g., “Second quarter, 7:30 left, talking Quizno’s baby — HILARIOUS, EVERGREEN.”

Here’s your first ad of the day, the GoDaddy “Basic Instinct” parody rejected by CBS for its illicit, electrifying hint of Candice Michelle gone commando. For your reading pleasure, the NYT has a fun piece about what happens to the losing team’s pre-printed “Super Bowl champion” t-shirts and Joe Queenan argues persuasively in the LA Times that if you’re rooting for the Colts, you’re a soulless punk who’d probably sell his mama out for a nickel. Mike Pechar isn’t rooting for the Colts himself but he’s found a nuanced, reality-based way not to root against them, either.

Two weeks ago I thought Indy was going to give Chicago the Spitzer treatment, but today I’m sensing a major “Peyton chokes” disturbance in the Force. Prediction: Bears in a close one.

Update: Katie, simply a vision today on the sidelines sans hairspray and make-up:


Update (Ian): Oliver on one of the greatest teams in one of the greatest super bowls.

Update: From the pre-game, Peyton dons Beastie Boys “Sabotage” gear for Sprint in the first of what’s sure to be many spots for him tonight. Ian says he’s seen this one before; I hadn’t.

Update: A new Geico caveman ad, but not “Super Bowl new” says Kid from Brooklyn. It’s a few weeks old. The subject: what makes an “authentic” caveman?

Update (Ian): Debbie Schlussel says forget the Super Bowl, bring on the Baghdad Bowl!

Update: Last one from the pre-game, also a few weeks old, from Combos. Fat guys in drag? Comedy gold. They’ve got an “interesting” website for this one, too.

Update: The NFL does MLS a solid by introducing Los Angeles “football” player David Beckham.

Update: Bob Owens wrote a post a few weeks ago about friends of his who’d entered a contest to have their ad — produced for $12.79 — run during the Super Bowl. Looks like they won.

Update: Blockbuster with something for the kids. Cute, if disturbing.

Update: Here’s the flip side of the Doritos ad — FedEx goes big budget.

Update: An instant classic of gay panic, and the best commercial of the night thus far, from Snickers.

Update: Carlos Mencia, proving once again why he’s the poor man’s Chappelle, for Bud Light.

Update: Candice leaves her underwear on this time for GoDaddy.

Update: No, it’s not an ad for Grand Theft Auto. It only looks that way.

Update: What do you get when you cross Spuds MacKenzie with “Lady and the Tramp”?

Update: Monsters and metal. My favorite ad of the night thus far.

Update: A little lighthearted S&M from Anheuser-Busch.

Update: Two takes on black history month from Coke and Frito-Lay, respectively.

Update: More Mencia for Bud Light. Painful.

Update: A few people have e-mailed asking for the Letterman promo that ran earlier. Cute.

Update: Another nifty animated spot from Coke, which was also responsible for the video game ad earlier.

Update: The rat race as Gladiator. Cute, but trying too hard.

Update: This one would have been a lot funnier if they’d gotten Will Ferrell to play him, but Ferrell’s a lot more expensive than Goooou-let is nowadays.

Update: FedEx goes low budget for its second clip of the night, with better results.

Update: The girl’s attractive enough that I can’t remember offhand what product this is for. Bud? Coke?

Update: Borrowing heavily from a scene in “Toy Story,” Bud gets crabs.

Update: The greatest duet since Bowie and Bing Crosby: Don Shula and Jay-Z faceoff in hologram football. Huh?

Verdict: I’m partial to the moronic Garmin ad, but Snickers really satisfied. Gaymania!

Update (Ian): I missed the Piano Man perform the National Anthem, but if someone finds the YouTube of it, please share!


Update: Retarded.

No commercial that appeared last night during Super Bowl XLI directly addressed Iraq, unlike a patriotic spot for Budweiser beer that ran during the game two years ago. But the ongoing war seemed to linger just below the surface of many of this year’s commercials.

More than a dozen spots celebrated violence in an exaggerated, cartoonlike vein that was intended to be humorous, but often came across as cruel or callous.

For instance, in a commercial for Bud Light beer, sold by Anheuser-Busch, one man beat the other at a game of rock, paper, scissors by throwing a rock at his opponent’s head.

In another Bud Light spot, face-slapping replaced fist-bumping as the cool way for people to show affection for one another. In a FedEx commercial, set on the moon, an astronaut was wiped out by a meteor. In a spot for Snickers candy, sold by Mars, two co-workers sought to prove their masculinity by tearing off patches of chest hair…

Then, too, there was the unfortunate homonym at the heart of a commercial from Prudential Financial, titled “What Can a Rock Do?”

The problem with the spot, created internally at Prudential, was that whenever the announcer said, “a rock” — invoking the Prudential logo, the rock of Gibraltar — it sounded as if he were saying, yes, “Iraq.”

Here’s the Prudential spot.

Update (Ian): Here’s Billy: