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We Interrupt this Program ... for 30 Seconds of Entertainment


There are two kinds of people who watch the Super Bowl. The first, and majority, pay rapt attention to the plays. They go get a beer, open a new bag of chips, or use the little boys' room during the commercials. The second tunes out or multitasks during the game itself, but pays rapt attention to the commercials.

As you may have guessed, the Bs at B Direct fall firmly and unashamedly into that second category.

The Super Bowl is old news (except with Trump un-inviting the Eagles to the White House this week, it's back in the news). But, there are still great commercials on the air. Here are some of our favorites.

The first three are from the insurance industry. (Who knew insurance could be so funny?)

Allstate Insurance "Grounded"
The casting and script in this funny :30 spot are absolutely perfect. And what parent doesn't recognize the situation? Mom and Dad are relaxing in bed when teen son comes to tell them that he's had a "very minor fender-bender" (complete with air quotes) due to "an unreasonably narrow fast food drive-through." Thanks to Allstate's Accident Forgiveness policy, they're covered. He's grounded, but they're covered.
See the ad here:

Liberty Mutual "24-Hour Roadside Assistance"
Liberty continues to run quality ads that strike the right balance between humor and human. In this case, they highlight their 24-hour roadside assistance feature by comparing a happy family to a hapless one. The talent is terrific, especially the passenger who seems to channel Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure in his laid-back (or perhaps weed-enhanced) response "Maybe."
Watch the ad here:

Progressive Insurance "The Closet"
This commercial uses Progressive's long-time spokeswoman Flo along with a familiar childhood terror. (Who doesn't remember being afraid of whoever — or whatever — was under the bed?) We love the yin/yang combination of fear and funny. It's also clever that the monster is concerned about the kid. Flo and Progressive feel like part of the family.
Here's the ad (watch it with the lights on):

The next is from the automotive industry, which (BTW) spends $3.5 billion a year according to Nielsen.

Kia America's Best Value Summer Sales Event "Sister"
Kia takes an anti-branding strategy here to demonstrate that car companies who use celebrity endorsements must not have as much to offer as they do. The kids are engaging (without being obnoxious). And the creative team leveraged a topic that's particularly topical as the discrepancy between men's and women's salaries in Hollywood are being scrutinized. You go girl!
Catch the spot here:

Amazon "Alexa Loses Her Voice"
This one was actually a Super Bowl ad, but is as entertaining a few months later as it was then. The commercial includes a cameo by Amazon's Jeff Bezos, and a host of celebrities including Rebel Wilson, Cardi B, Gordon Ramsay and Anthony (Hannibal Lecter) Hopkins. Alexa enthusiasts will be tickled. And Alexa detractors will have to admit that things could get worse.
Watch it here:

And finally, just to prove that TV ads don't have to incorporate humor to be powerful and memorable  ...

MSNBC "This is When it Matters"
In a time when it's difficult to distinguish between the "free press" and the "fake media," it's nice to be reminded that journalism is not only a noble profession but an intrinsic ingredient in our democracy. The ad combines great still photos with an inspiring voiceover. "Be patient and have courage for there will be better and happier news some day."
Get inspired here:

Amen to that.

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