How the Super Bowl Has Become More About Advertising Than the Game Itself

Super Bowl LV attracted 96.4 million viewers between cable viewers and streaming viewers. This is down from years prior, however, it still stands to be an incredible number of viewers for one sporting event. Many non-football fans tune in to watch the big game because of its flashy half time concerts and entertaining ads. For just 30 seconds of airtime during Super Bowl LV, companies paid upwards of $5,500,000 to advertize.  

Multi-million-dollar food and beverage companies such as Pepsi, Budweiser, Coca-Cola, and Lays always have ads that are star-studded or grasp one’s attention immediately. Advertisers do not just aim for funny and entertaining ads, some even go as far as to make them controversial, resulting in people talking about them for years to come. One of the more beloved commercials for Super Bowl LV was the Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski T-Mobile ad that sees him bringing “Gronk” out of retirement due to some of his words being cut out because of a poor network connection.  

T-mobile ad for Super Bowl LV, featuring Rob Gronkowski and Tom Brady

On the controversial side of things, one ad that stood out was the Dodge Charger ad for the 2010 Super Bowl. It displayed men speaking in a depressed manner about how they would do everything their wives wanted just so they could drive the car they wanted. People complained about the amount of misogyny this ad portrayed. You must ask yourself, “Is this what the advertisers wanted?”.

It is more than 11 years later and I still remember this distasteful ad. A researcher showed that, as a society we love ads in general, so it is no wonder that we tune in for the more special and eye-catching ones during this game. It is engraved in the American society as “Super Sunday” and will forever be an advertiser’s paradise to allow consumers to see their products.  


Featured Image: Tom Brady shouting before playing Super Bowl LV in Tampa Bay on February 7th, 2021 (Source: Patrick Smith- Getty Images)

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