087 – Andy Wallman – Super Bowl Commercial Winners and Losers

It’s really why we tune in most years: to check out the commercials. It’s a professional hazard. This year, we have Andy Wallman of KW2 joining us to discuss. Andy is president at KW2 and resident Super Bowl Commercial TV critic. Grab your favorite libation and join the fun.

Topics in this episode:

  • (00:02:41) An interesting year for Super Bowl commercials.
  • (00:05:14) Take 2.
  • (00:07:55) How did Andy Wallman become the Super Bowl ad guy?
  • (00:10:10) Celebrity endorsements.
  • (00:11:58) Bud Light Hold | Easy To Drink, Easy To Enjoy.
  • (00:21:10) The Busch Guide: Cold + Smooth Survival Skills.
  • (00:26:18) The risk of leveraging pop culture.
  • (00:33:02) Pop Corners Breaking Bad Super Bowl Commercial | Breaking Good.
  • (00:41:18) Uber One – One Hit For Uber One.
  • (00:47:03) Bradley Cooper and His Mom Attempt A T-Mobile Commercial.
  • (00:51:41) The Roast Of Mr. Peanut.
  • (00:54:17) M&M’s Super Bowl Commercials.
  • (01:00:25) “Premature Electrification” | Ram Trucks.
  • (01:03:05) Saving Sawyer | Amazon’s Big Game Ad / “Forever”: The Farmer’s Dog 2023 Super Bowl Commercial.
  • (01:12:06) Tubi Interface Interruption.
  • (01:13:54) Tubi Rabbit Hole.
  • (01:16:22) Disney100 Special Look.
  • (01:17:35) Be Childlike / Love Your Enemies
  • (01:20:24) Rémy Martin | Inch By Inch Featuring Serena Williams.
  • (01:20:58) NFL Super Bowl LVII Commercial || Run With It.
  • (01:25:30) Andy’s least favorite ad.
  • (01:28:29) John’s ad picks.
  • (01:39:29) Ryan’s ad picks.


Ryan Freng: 0:04

Hello and welcome back to the let’s Backflip Show Happy Hour. I’m Ryan Freng, co-creative director and co-founder here at Backflip, and this is another good one. This is episode 87 with Andy Wallman. We talk Super Bowl commercials, which is really, really fun. Andy is principal he might actually be retired at this point because this is like a year and a half later. Might actually be retired at this point because this is like a year and a half later at KW2, an agency here in town and longtime collaborator and friend, and every year he goes on the news and talks about the Super Bowl commercials. So we brought him on so we could share in the fun and talk about the commercials, our favorite commercials, the winners and the losers. So that’s what we did this year. Let’s just get to it. This is episode 87 with Andy Wallman. Hello and welcome back to another let’s Backflip Show happy hour. I’m Ryan Frank, co-creative director here at Backflip, and joining me, as always, is John Shoemaker from the Guitar Museum. What’s happening, john?

John Shoemaker: 1:04

Not a lot happening here at the Guitar Museum. What’s happening, john? Not a lot happening here at the Guitar Museum. Still have the same section. Come on down, take a look. You can see some all the way back from 2007, maybe 2005. This one, real vintage, all the way back to, I’m going to say, 1983.

Ryan Freng: 1:31

Would you say vintage 1983?

John Shoemaker: 1:33

Yeah, yeah, nice Well could be this. One could go back to like 70s.

Ryan Freng: 1:41

That’s classic, I mean it’s basically ancient.

John Shoemaker: 1:48

Yeah, that’s just a little teaser of the tour. That’s about half the tour. If you want to see the other half, come on down.

Ryan Freng: 1:59

We’re going to bring Andy Wallman in. We’re going to bring our expert in here right when he’s getting his camera set. That’s what I was hoping we could do. How’s it going, andy? Oh no, have I lost your audio? Oh my gosh, that would be so great. We spent a little time getting his audio to work and now we don’t have his audio.

John Shoemaker: 2:33

It’s the mystery of the dance.

Ryan Freng: 2:34

It’s the mystery of the dance. Yeah, I might just maybe have him call my phone or something.

John Shoemaker: 2:42

So I guess I can vamp a little bit on the. It’s not just a, it’s not just a useless vamp. This will be me talking about commercials a bit, because that’s what we’re going to talk about super bowl commercials. Um, I’m sure we’ll muse and opine about other topics as well. Um, and I’m I don’t, I don’t want to like start or like skew any of the opinion or conversation, because I want to hear what Andy has to say. I’ll just say it in the general way it was an interesting year for me watching the commercials, yeah.

Ryan Freng: 3:22

How so.

John Shoemaker: 3:25

One thing that thank you, luke. Luke is pandering to me. He wants to hear my useless vamp.

John Shoemaker: 3:32

It’s not useless you’re going to want to record this part and save it for posterity. Yeah, this is the moon. Oh well, let’s just say it this way. The the one thing that was interesting. This actually came up in another meeting. We were talking about how the Super Bowl yes, the costs to put your ad up are wildly expensive because it’s like is it maybe the one of the most important times where it actually matters in all of tv today?

John Shoemaker: 4:09

that because of streaming and dvr and whatever. The super bowl is one of the last places that people actually go to watch the commercials and aren’t skipping the ads, yeah like you’re like you’re expecting to see something there. Uh yeah, it’s super so it.

John Shoemaker: 4:31

Yeah, it’s a. It’s an interesting space to be in, um, and I’m sure, I’m sure to some extent, you know, as a marketer like there’s probably there’s probably a lot of pressure too to be like even though we’re going to critique them, the pressure to knock it out of the park, to be like this is it. This is not just the football Super Bowl, it’s the commercial Super.

Ryan Freng: 4:56

Bowl and you see that you see people trying really, really hard and some cases succeeding and some cases failing, which is what we’re going to talk about today. Let’s do we have andy? Do we have audio?

John Shoemaker: 5:09

wow, okay, we’re back.

Ryan Freng: 5:10

Cool three two hello and welcome back to the less backflip show. We got andy wallman joining us here from kw2 madison, president and co-owner. How’s it going going, andy?

Andy Wallman: 5:23

Great, this is great. I’m not sweating Whoa. Nobody’s sweating who’s sweating, I’m not sweating.

Andy Wallman: 5:29

Thank you for having me. This is like you said, John. This is sort of the one time a year when the world actually does kind of pay attention, maybe even look forward to seeing what the big brands, the startups, the nobody from nowhere has to put out there. You had a great point about the pressure. I think you guys know this. You make a lot of content, a lot of video stuff, all kinds of things for your clients and you have to get on base, get a double triple home run every time. Imagine when there’s all that money on the line.

Andy Wallman: 6:06

It’s a publicly owned company, so shareholders might be breathing down your neck. You have layers of internal approval layers and layers of client approval. I mean the pressure is you need to run out of the head. It’s huge, it’s gigantic. It’s worse than when your audio doesn’t work in an interview about supermarkets. It’s high stakes bingo and, and you know the, the minute it comes out, you can see sentiment in in social media. You can get feedback right away and I think this year there were a lot of people sweating really hard, you know, like checking Twitter, for example, and the blowback was immediate. Yeah right, First quarter. I don’t think anybody liked anything in the first quarter and then, as results or sales or further quantitative or qualitative testing could happen to gauge efficacy, to start tracking the return on your investment, man, I worry that this year might just be a lousy year for returns for some of those brands. Conversely, some of the other brands I think are going to be really happy.

Ryan Freng: 7:19

Yeah, that’s a great kind of place to start, and I think a good format, a good way that we can do this is maybe bounce around and I can probably show some of these commercials, at least portions of them, and then we can talk about them, what worked for us, what didn’t, and then at the end, we’ll each pick a winner and a loser. How’s that all sound? Love it, love it, love it. All right, here I’m going to set this down for just a hot second while I get that document up that I shared. Let’s see, andy, can you give us a little bit of a description too? Hannah, our graphic designer digital person, was like you guys should talk about the super bowl, and I immediately thought about you, because you do this, uh, on the news, and you’re doing it with mmp and you’re like the guy who does it. So I immediately thought of you. But can you give a little background on how you got going on that?

Andy Wallman: 8:17

yeah, you know, I actually started um via wtmj, uh in milwaukee, tmj in Milwaukee, the radio stage At the time, and this was 16, 17 years ago. I happened to know the morning DJ there and he had said, oh, wow, yeah, you’re in advertising. You know you’re creative and you know, would you care to come on the radio Monday morning and talk about the ads? And I was like sure, but why do you want a guy from madison? And and he had a great answer.

Andy Wallman: 8:53

You know, we have a lot of milwaukee ad agencies, um, who are running ads with us and we can’t appear to show favoritism or the opposite and slight anybody or anything like that. So I think it was maybe a strategy on their part to get it out of power. We did that for a few years and then um channel three came a calling and asked basically the same type of question outside of that market, exclusively type of out of market thing, um, and I think they knew about the shy person and not uh, afraid to share an opinion. And that was about 15 years ago. And uh, you know, like I said earlier, it’s this, the, the time of year when the spotlight is sort of on what I do for a living and and what I love to do. Uh, so just to get that shot, man I’m it yeah, all right, so I got this up now.

John Shoemaker: 9:58

Oh, go ahead, jim, I wonder. I wonder if this is um, uh, to well, this is, this is what the opinions are for, I guess. So this, this is my question and and clearly there’s an opinion loaded in it but did you feel like this year, you know, on that topic of like, uh, this being the, the big pressure, or whatever, this year felt to me like people, like it wasn’t clear what was going to be the winning formula, the winning format? There was kind of like, in my opinion, I felt like this year was like a lot of celebrity endorsement and that just like stuck out to me.

John Shoemaker: 10:43

It stuck out to me because my kids and I know my kids are not.

Andy Wallman: 10:46

Did it work for you, All these celebs? What was your take on that? It’s the classic part of the formula, but what did you think in terms of it being worth it or of value to the brands?

John Shoemaker: 11:02

So there’s a couple parts of it. So my kids are not the target, I know, um, but it stuck out to me because my kids were asking me uh, every single one, who’s that, who’s that like? So it was like clear, like oh, if you don’t know who these people are, it means nothing to you. I’m also not like a super mainstream guy. So there were a couple that hit that was like okay, I see this person’s face being shown very prominently and it’s probably something I’m, someone I’m supposed to know, but I don’t know who it is like. So there were a couple that hit me like that and then it, and then I just tend to pick up like I kind of got lost in the fray of like, okay, lots of people, and it’s when I’m thinking back to it then it’s hard to remember who goes with which commercial and which product.

Ryan Freng: 11:54

And yeah, that makes me. That makes me think of this one, which I’ll share it up on screen now. The bud light, uh, easy to drink, easy to enjoy. Let’s see if this will actually play. There you go. So I really like this one because I thought it was subtle. You got Miles Teller coming up here. It’s super chill, super slow paced, and then they’re just going to dance. They’re just going to dance for like 45 seconds and there’s a little joke in here too. But this is one of those that was like a celebrity endorsement, that or in the sense of having a celebrity do something. That wasn’t terrible, and I actually really enjoyed this one. Do you guys enjoyed this one? Do?

Andy Wallman: 12:47

you guys remember this one, yeah, um, I guess. Uh, you want my take.

Ryan Freng: 12:54

Oh yeah.

Andy Wallman: 12:55

Okay, I didn’t like it.

Ryan Freng: 12:57

You didn’t like it.

Andy Wallman: 12:58

No, um, and here’s why you know you’ve got presumably great creatives at great agencies.

Andy Wallman: 13:07

You know, bud Light has a lot of muscle and they also have a legacy of producing a lot of really notable Super Bowl ads over the years. Right, for years they were the brand. In fact, ddb in Chicago had the account. Uh, I knew a guy who worked there and they would shoot maybe 10 spots. They’d have a lot of spots, um, and then they would test them and they would run the five, six most popular. And that was back in the time when, um, it was back in the time when it was all slapstick, it was all jokes, it was all you know super comical stuff. And they won the water cooler, they won the popularity contest every year.

Andy Wallman: 13:54

So you get a little bit of that legacy. You add to that they flanked. It was kind of an interesting strategy that they had. They wanted to be funny and Say hey, but like you know, we’re so great we’re funny it’s a good time beer to have with your pals when you’re just hanging out. They also brought in Clydesdales, wanted people to appeal to the older crew and have that reverent st Louis Anheuser-busch brand message go out along with it. And you add all that up and I thought, well, you got Bud Light and the one thing they did, like what you said, where they weren’t loud, they weren’t noisy, they didn’t make this splash, uh, like so many of the other brands did.

Andy Wallman: 14:48

On the other hand, I thought like that’s as good as you got, that’s the most creative thing you can come up with is a couple of people just dancing to to a song not like and I, I you know again that that sort of breath of fresh air there weren’t all these explosions. It wasn’t super long, like some of them choose to do. Um, but man, I’d like to see what they threw away to make the winning ad be all right, these famous people are gonna dance People are going to dance.

Ryan Freng: 15:22

Something’s on hold.

Andy Wallman: 15:23

Like what were the other ads that didn’t beat, that I just felt like boy somebody, and you know I’m biased as a creative, of course the creatives came up with a zillion brilliant ideas and some suit in the boardroom that approved this concept. I mean, it was testing. You know, a lot of these brands aren’t going to move a muscle without being able to prove, through quantitative or qualitative, that X number of people thought it was great or something.

Andy Wallman: 15:59

But I just sort of felt like, yeah, you could probably do better than that. The T-Mobile version of it, I liked even less. But I just sort of felt like, yeah, you could probably do better than that. The T-Mobile version of it, I liked even less. Oh yeah, it was none without hats, you can dance if you want to. And the turn in it was like, well, you know, with plans as great as these, you can do whatever with your or no, it was TurboTax. Oh, turbotax. Okay, yeah, you don’t have to do your taxes, we’ll do your taxes so you can have time for other cool stuff. Right, and? And that I thought was even kind of more dumb and more of a waste of money.

Ryan Freng: 16:40

Yeah, that was I think a 45.

Andy Wallman: 16:47

So they spent a little bit more than they would have a 30. What they negotiated? A big thing. They had a couple others, or they don’t want to buy with the uh network going on, so I don’t know.

Ryan Freng: 16:53

Yeah, it’s old guy, but uh, it just didn’t hit me well, what you’re bringing up, too, is like the relation to what you expect from them and so expectations not being met, which is which is huge right, like they’ve been known to make huge splashes and do lots of unique things, where I feel like this is, in one sense, kind of the opposite of that, except, uh, I appreciated it because I think a lot of people were trying to do uh, creative, and you could tell it’s like oh, you’re trying to be creative, um, and failing. And this one just was like chill and amidst all the craziness, and I remembered it and and I think that’s what it was for me like after the fact, I was like what commercials do I remember? I was like, oh, that bud light one was super chill.

Andy Wallman: 17:33

I like that, uh, a lot of people did like it, as you say today, not like they’re the arbiter of great taste or whatever, but they’re known for testing the heck out of these, uh, monday morning results and, and it, I think, was top five with them. But you know most of america’s with you, right? Uh, in terms of liking, uh, that is an ad, an interesting kind of behind the scenes thing, um, but light, in addition to buying a lot of airtime, historically, and banniser bush with the Clydesdales and with all nations as well, um, they, as part of that deal, they had an exclusive to be the only alcohol brand, uh, in the super bowl for years, and last june or july they gave up, whatever the rights, the payment, to be the exclusive brand, which is why you saw, uh, you know, so many different booze brands this year. Yeah, remy, remy, mark, I think, remy.

Andy Wallman: 18:29

Martin yeah yeah, kind of like a behind-the-scenes thing maybe most folks don’t care about, but kind of interesting that they gave away that exclusivity to it to let others in mm-hmm and I think we’ve lost your video.

Ryan Freng: 18:43

I don’t know if you need to wake that computer up. We still got your audio, so we got the good part okay, what, what else did you guys like?

Andy Wallman: 18:53

what else spoke to you? What else did you think was great advertising?

John Shoemaker: 18:57

so I’ll, uh, I’ll uh jump in on the, the bud light. One part of the issue that I that I saw was it’s the same thing I was getting at. I didn’t even know who the people were. I didn’t know that was a celebrity placement at all, okay, so I didn’t know that. I did know the reference to a viral video of a of a guy dancing to hold music. Um, that went around to that hold music and so I was like, okay, that’s kind of funny, they’re referencing that, but not everybody in the room knew that. My parents didn’t know that. Um, I don’t remember if my sister knew that or not.

John Shoemaker: 19:36

So, like the the, the attempt to grab some sort of like shared experience is getting harder because we’re not all consuming the same thing.

John Shoemaker: 19:47

We don’t have three channels anymore that we all see the same thing, right, and with like curated, um, curated content. You know, in your social media feeds we’re getting more and more specific to each person, and so then the shared experience to me that’s why I like the celebrity endorsement or very specific references to things, is like that might not be a winning formula anymore. Like my shared experience has to be more on a higher human level, like bud lights, classic commercials of like horses and puppies, like, okay, we, we can get on board with some shared experience, but who’s this random person and what’s the specific reference? Not everybody will know, right, some people will. And that the last bit of that one is also like what was the product? I think if you hadn’t shown me I don’t know that I could have figured out what it was supposed. I don’t know that I could have remembered it was Bud Light versus Coors versus Miller versus anything else you know.

John Shoemaker: 20:58

so they didn’t tie the joke or the comedy into. Yeah, they didn’t put the brand product into. Whereas this one. You’ve got on your screen right there, that the Bush ad. It’s not super tight, but they have their Bush sound.

Ryan Freng: 21:22

Bush yeah, that’s fun. Bush sound Bush yeah, that’s fun. And Sarah McLachlan again, that’s another reference you’ve got to get. But they do name her and I think that’s hilarious because of the satire of it. Oh Sarah, that’s a wolf.

John Shoemaker: 21:45

And that one might be like again the younger generation isn’t the target. So my pit, my kids didn’t get, it didn’t matter. It was still funny to them that she was by the. You know animals and stuff, yeah, but that one is probably old enough to to be a more mass audience. Shared experience they played those ads about helping animals so much back in the day that they were sure to hit a wide slice of the population with that reference.

Ryan Freng: 22:22

Oh, there we go, we got him Figured it out. All right, the bush, yeah, I mean it was. Again, it was memorable. I don’t, I didn’t necessarily think it was overly complex. Um, I, let’s see, I kind of kind of enjoyed it. Um, again, it didn’t. You know, I didn’t, I didn’t remember it and I didn’t hate it. That’s, I guess, that’s the uh, my review of it. The. Bush, the Bush one, yeah, I don’t know what are your thoughts on this one.

Andy Wallman: 23:04

It was a cute joke and stuff and you know she showed a lot of courage for being known for that Save the pets and won’t you give now? Yeah, so that was cool for her and she’s been off the map. Her Q score rating has probably fallen in recent years. So, strategically, I’m sure she and her agent love being back in the spotlight and the conversation and I think what this sort of brought up and you know it’s what you try to get out of any ad and sometimes they really do a great job in the Super Bowl ads with this coming point. Sometimes they don’t this one sort of didn’t, but it’s why should I buy this? What about? This is terrific.

Andy Wallman: 23:52

Now, maybe this is the inferences. You know going camping with the famous Canadian singer. Perhaps you know this is the beer for you to take when you’re camping, or something. This is the beer for you to take when you’re camping, or something. But the brands that don’t try to really get me or get the viewer to do something or know something, why they should pick you over someone else? I think sometimes that’s a missed opportunity.

Andy Wallman: 24:21

Now they could argue there’s a lot of Bush Light drinkers out there and you know this is a theory out of the Sunday morning news shows advertising. You know, if you watch, like H&M, meet the Brows, these types of things, and you’ll see a brand on there that you’ve never heard of and they may not be selling a lot, but they’re just speaking to shareholders saying you exist. Look at us being a player on the big stage here, and maybe that was part of Bush’s strategy was to say or to not worry about having to say anything to sell it, say anything competitively, say anything new or great about it. Maybe it was just like maintaining awareness with their core, reminding that legion, the billions of Bush Light drinkers out there, that we exist and we’re kind of funny too, because we made this joke about Sarah. We’re not going to lose.

Ryan Freng: 25:18

Yeah, yeah, and you know sound cues and, like Bush, like that was pretty clever, I thought, and super memorable and I hope that that continues. Right, I expect that that’s going to continue, or maybe it has, maybe it’s an older joke.

Andy Wallman: 25:35

Yeah, that mnemonic, you know Coke used to leverage that a lot. Their brand promise forever is refreshment. So you would see the carbonation, you would hear the fizz. Even the soda cans might have the fake beads of sweat on it. All these little brand cues that try to get to their promise. Like you have a Coke, it’s refreshing, and that mnemonic for British light goes way back. Their jingle thing used to be and I think they had the fizzy crack of the can associated with that for a long time.

Ryan Freng: 26:14

I love it. All right, where do you guys want to go next?

Andy Wallman: 26:20

You know a couple of the broad stroke things that hit it for me were the movies Clueless and Any Given Sunday and Caddyshop.

Ryan Freng: 26:34


Andy Wallman: 26:35

I had a creative director once who just would ring my bell and say, if I brought an idea like that that leveraged a different thing in pop culture or society or history, then his point was like Andy, we’re taking some time and headspace away from the viewer to talk about us and to make them remember us, us. You know, the reason that media goes for frequency is to repeat and repeat and repeat messages.

Andy Wallman: 27:10

So, over time we’re going to remember what these companies and brands want us to remember or they want us to do or what have you. And when you use a celebrity or a song, you run that risk of the audience remembering the celebrity or the song or the movie more than the brand and why they should get it. And I thought some of those and they were all kind of 80s, except for Grease, they were all kind of 80s movies that might have played to Jan X or something who loves 80s things and all that. But um, clue is in, the racketeer ad seemed kind of relevant.

Andy Wallman: 27:55

Uh, at least silverstone bought a lot of fashion stuff yeah so to say, go get some fashion stuff through this brand correlated with her Candy Shack. I guess you know it’s beer. Go, you know I have a beer with you in golf, or whatever. The Greece thing was like wow, our agent John Travolta’s agent agreed to the deal. Now what? Let’s figure out.

Ryan Freng: 28:22

I feel like that was my response to a lot of those Like they agreed to be in this commercial, like they must’ve just been like, oh well, money’s good, even if the content is not. You know. Cause that’s what I felt, like I was like it’s not good, you know, for these actors are like Snoop Dogg and Skechers. I was like I didn’t. I like left those commercials feeling worse about the actor.

Andy Wallman: 28:45

I left those commercials feeling worse about the actor. Yeah, and you wonder how cognizant they are of that. Does it just take Lenny Rugg? Yeah, it might be, if any given Sunday. I didn’t realize it at the time. I had to look it up. But what Serena Williams did was Al Pacino’s speech to the football team and they tried to parlay that into whether you’re a dancer or a football player or whatever. Every inch counts.

Andy Wallman: 29:11

go for it all and give it your all in life and a lot of the sports fans were were not happy with it because it didn’t do justice to the reverence of that moment in the movie, like a sport movie was one of the most sport movie scenes ever in history.

Andy Wallman: 29:27

It was defiled, but you could kind of say the same with Candy Shack. I didn’t think that execution was super reverential to the legacy and pantheon that Errol Greenwich and Bill Murray put out of that movie. So, uh, you know, you take a risk with celebrities and and I don’t think, uh, it worked really well in some of those instances. You know another one uh, uh guys, and and it was sort of a mixed one for me Real quick.

Ryan Freng: 30:02

Are you able to hear John at all?

Andy Wallman: 30:06

Are you just hearing me on the phone. I can’t hear john at all okay, interpreter.

Ryan Freng: 30:09

Okay, yeah, sorry, yeah, I just want to give john a second to to talk um and I think, yeah, you, you might just not hear for like 20 seconds, you might just not hear him, yeah, he would have to do audio through his computer and and and then mic through his phone or whatever.

John Shoemaker: 30:26

yeah, but the the that point again of the, the movie references, yeah, same thing, like they were kind of fun, but in hindsight the commercial itself is what was the product? Like? He mentioned those, I didn’t even remember, like I remember seeing them now that you mentioned them, andy, but I don’t remember the product at all for those movie reference ones. I cannot begin to think of what the grease one was advertising. I didn’t remember what the product was for the other ones either not remembering the product from any of those.

Ryan Freng: 31:02

I don’t know if the headphone trick worked. I put my headphone into the speaker or the microphone. It didn’t. Yeah, john was just commenting. He didn’t remember any of the brands, like what those were even for, just like a distaste of the actor. Yeah, and that’s I mean. I don’t know if you were going to come to work a day. I like the concept, but again, it seemed like a waste of budget for all the celebrities on this one.

Andy Wallman: 31:34

I’m with you, Ryan. You just got away with Paul Stanley or Billy Idol. They really must have had a great budget for it.

Ryan Freng: 31:45


Andy Wallman: 31:46

You know, as a Super Bowl ad. You know, within that construct of some celebrities and jokes and peace and budget and stuff, it was fine. You know, I didn’t dislike those components of it. What I kept thinking of is those celebrities that are super relevant to boomers and and then it kind of trickles down from there. Um so who are they really trying to target? Uh uh, hr managers, employers, or are boomers primarily, who had been down sourced, or boomers primarily?

Andy Wallman: 32:29

who had been down, sourced or quiet, quitting COVID or something you know who are they really? Really trying to get to get lit up and flip over to try work a day as the job possibility, a workforce thing, you know, but as the Super Bowl add, you know, that’s fine.

Ryan Freng: 32:44

Yeah, and you know what I’m going to do. I’m going to add John to this Brilliant, and then I will just pull the phone away when John talks. I got it. I can make technology happen. Cool, all right. And then, andy, I think you were going to take us to another commercial.

Andy Wallman: 33:01

Yeah, I don’t know what was your take on Popcorn.

Ryan Freng: 33:04

uh, breaking bad spoof oh, and I kind of saw the pop corners a little bit beforehand, um, and I don’t remember if the full thing was released or if it was just mentioned. Um, I was fine with it. Uh, I loved breaking bad and the scene was pretty great and actually some of it looked a little bit better than I remember in in Breaking Bad, um, so that was kind of fun. Uh, by itself, you know, without the context, I thought it was, I don’t know, not great, not super memorable, um, cause, again, like you said, it’s cribbing that scene from Breaking Bad and changing the context of it to not be meth but to be popcorners. I did remember it, I did. You know it brought back some nostalgia of the show. So that was. Those were some positive things. But as a commercial, I was just like, eh, you know, kind of got that trying too hard. Feel is what I took away from it.

Andy Wallman: 34:18

I was sort of wondering if what they were really trying to say is they have one new flavor they talked about. When they finally get out of the RV, they say we have six air impulses, we have six flavors. And the other guy says I want seven. Oh, okay, seven. And I wonder if that was like on the creative brief originally was our whole point is to introduce the seventh flavor, or or to say that we have seven flavors now of popcorners. That’s, that’s the reason we’re doing all this, this big spend and splash on the super bowl. Um, you know, they really weren’t throwing in a whole lot of cell and stuff yeah, um, I’ll get this video too, you know it’s.

Andy Wallman: 35:04

It’s one of those. If you know Breaking Bad, if you’re a fan of Breaking Bad there were a lot of folks that were you know, fun, nostalgic trip down Neverland. If you don’t know it, you’re lost, you’re gone, you don’t get the joke, you’re not in on the joke to have the whole thing and it’s an all or nothing premise. If you’re doing a Breaking Bad spoof where you’re leveraging that equity, that phenom, you’re talking about meth and doing meth jokes, it’s. You know how can you cook this up and you know everybody’s going to be addicted to it or whatever. Uh, it was a little, a little different, a little weird.

John Shoemaker: 35:54

Yeah, and again I. I had the thing where I yet again I did not remember the product at all. Like I. I am like, oh yeah, that was, that was a funny ad. I’m like pop cores what is that? Now, I all like I. I’m like, oh yeah, that was, that was a funny ad. I’m like popcars what is that? Now I see it. I’m like, oh okay, that’s right, it was like some, but nothing.

John Shoemaker: 36:11

Like just, you know, again, like it feels weird to critique these. Like great creative, you know on all this, like great production value and everything. But I’m like, but as the consumer, like, would it be more, uh, effective to just the old stock traditional ad? Just tell us what the product is and what the value proposition is and why I should get it. Like spend seven million dollars on your ad space to do that and you’re in front of the people like because, yeah, it was fun, but I did not remember the product at all I had a cool job that you’re saying it should sell something and really say something uh, no, I’m with you.

Andy Wallman: 36:56

I’m with you.

Ryan Freng: 36:57

Uh, there was a lot of sell, there wasn’t a lot of why you should go buy this or buy it over something else yeah, that, and that’s kind of that interesting thought of it’s got to do all these things and, and you know, budweiser is maybe a great example of someone who tried unique things and then eventually people started copying and maybe even like geico, uh, with their, the way that they do their punch lines right, uh, it’s like uh, and I forget. I probably should have have thought about it beforehand. But they do something kind of similar where on a lot of one of the campaigns that they have it’s did you know you could save this much? Oh, it’s kind of like a ice cream tap I’m forgetting all the lines, but it’s like proposition and then crazy silly thing to remember it cut to crazy silly thing. Back to proposition. You know, value proposition, um, and they kind of develop that mode and now everyone basically does that, even like who’s doing it?

Ryan Freng: 38:03

Now, liberty mutual does a weird version of it. They’ve been trying with the bird for years and the green screen one is just terrible. But it seems like there’s kind of those modes that get developed and then get copied because they work well, and then now I guess that’s what I’m criticizing this year maybe, like I didn’t feel like there was anything that stood out as unique, different. You know, never, never before done. You know it’s a lot of.

Andy Wallman: 38:36

It felt really tired to me yeah, yeah, gecko’s discipline is amazing because they they turn the corner. They’re actually just kind of boring. And then they did get funny and creative and memorable and get some chalk value, but they consistently said where you were going right. Um, say, 15 or more car insurance, or 15, 15 minutes or less, something close to that. That’s the button every single time that they leave you with and they spend so much. I think they’re one of the biggest media spenders out there. They’re constantly running messages and to have that at the end of every one of them is smart. That’s good brand communications. They’re really trying to sell a value proposition they’re really trans-song ovality preposition.

John Shoemaker: 39:30

So I I always I had a friend who, uh, was a very talented musician, still is a very talented musician, and he would write this music in college and my wife and I actually like really enjoyed it. We still have a bunch of those from his early album. Um, but I saw, uh, a trend and I think I see this in a lot of young musicians is that after a while he would sort of start to like redo his songs and like re-concept the melody. And, uh, even one of our favorite ones, he like changed the chorus and it like brought it down like to a third like it was like a harmony, and we’re like that’s not even the melody from the original time you wrote it like and what it is is.

John Shoemaker: 40:10

I think it’s people creatives getting tired of the thing that they have because I’ve they’ve heard it so many times and to me I’m like, yeah, but your audience isn’t tired of it, your audience can hear it again. Your audience could use that reinforcement of the brand message or the proposition, instead of the marketer being like well, we’ve already done the save this on Geico, we save 15% or more, we’ve already done that, let’s try something else. And then you end up with something that’s like Keiko hasn’t done that. But you end up with these, these brands that are like, okay, you would have just been better off just giving me a solid call to action, you know brand proposition. Uh, then like, oh, it’s a funny ad, but I don’t know what this is for and I maybe I’m getting ahead of uh know where, whether ryan’s ready for this part or not, but like one of the ones I thought for me, those two that I thought were the most effective, that I just remembered, um, but the one that sort of surprised me was a uber ad, the uber one ad.

John Shoemaker: 41:24

I didn’t necessarily like it immediately because I don’t know a lot about again, who was that? Who was the dude that was sitting there, was it? Uh, it was some rap artist. Um, did dr dre? Did he? There you go. So, yeah, um, and and I’m like, okay, I don’t really know who he is. But then when they went into the all the artists, like you know, doing these like songs, they were asking him to create a hit song and he’s, like you know, did he?

John Shoemaker: 41:58

doesn’t do jingles or whatever, like, no no, not a jingle, we want a hit song. And then you get all these like nostalgic and again I know you’re taking a risk, but nostalgic songs that everybody knows, but they put the brand name into the joke of the ad over and over and over. So, like the, you know the one, uh, yeah, uber one, uber one, I will be with you. Like I can’t remember what all the references were, but the few that I remembered they had uber in it. So I just remember uber, okay, so now it’s stuck in my head.

John Shoemaker: 42:37

I know uber, uber is on top of mind for the next several months, you know, um, so that was one that that kind of initially I wasn’t sure if I would like the ad, but then it was kind of funny because they hit enough different songs that you were kind of like it was like a good strategy too to like. Well, if you don’t like this song, we’ll play. They played five different snippets of classic songs that every you know somebody could like something from all of them and they all made the same joke replace the words with uber you know of the ultra famous songs.

Andy Wallman: 43:11

One of the women was the you know. So it’s a cool tactic if you get the right audio, the right music. Rather it’s a wormhole. You know it’s tough to forget a catchy jingle or something that’s repeated. On the flip side, I had a like the second. They said jingle in the ad. I laughed.

Andy Wallman: 43:34

I used to get golf from a partner of mine as a writer, a copywriter, and you’re always teamed up with an art director, and if I would come up with a concept that was about a song that had a song or had music, which I tried to do a lot, I just love that as a as a tactic, because the wormhole can get into your ear and make it memorable. But if you give me gulf and say, there you go, woman, if you can’t say it, sing it. In other words, you can’t come up with a good idea, so you’re capping out with this jingle idea. You know, inside and creative, direct, creative, uh, slamorama, uh, night, I thought right away okay, uber, if you can’t say it, sing it. But it was funny and the star power usage was pretty good.

Ryan Freng: 44:20

I remember this too. I feel like I had a mixed kind of perception of it. One, the brand was clear to me and I thought that was extremely effective. I kind of disliked the diddy part, like the ylvis I thought was kind of funny. But you know, same thing with snoop hawking sketchers it just feels cheesy, you know, and I feel like there’s a way that it doesn’t have to be cheesy, um, but then again, you know, it was very well produced. It was very pretty kind of filmic gamma, look to it. Um. So yeah, this one, this one had a lot of positives for me too, despite my aversion this year to celebrity endorsements you know it was weird too.

Andy Wallman: 45:10

Uh, apropos, maybe nothing, but I think three or four of the ads were in an audio studio. Somebody, somebody was behind the soundboard for crown royale. Uh, this one, I I forget the one or two others, but it was just kind of a weird coincidence that. All right, picture this you’re in an audio studio, find this big soundboard, right, and then you’re the first dad on the Super Bowl when you have that idea. Then the next one comes on. You go crap, somebody else is doing the in the booth, in the studio, behind the board thing too. And then the third one comes on.

Andy Wallman: 45:45

Ah crap, there’s the third one where they’re you know, you want to have the only great soundboard, audio music studio idea, the whole thing, the ending thing of this thing too. Like he, you know I think they tried to get a funny look out of him and it looked like to me, like his last he’s trying to sort of smile a fake smile right at the very end. There it is, he’s sort of fake. I don’t think he can act very well and I wonder if that took like 70 takes.

Andy Wallman: 46:13

All right, let’s try one more. Let’s just roll back and you’re going to turn the camera and you’re going to smile this kind of uncomfortable smile. Okay, that’s great. Well, let’s try it one more time. We’re going to try one more time and just be a little more uncomfortable. I wonder at At what point did he just say all right, I did seven takes, you have it, pick one, we’re moving on.

Ryan Freng: 46:34

Yeah, all right, let’s see. Do you have quick question? Do you have a hard out, or is it okay if we go a little past one? Because if we have a hard out, we’ll go. We’ll get your winner and your loser. Oops, hang on, I turned it off. What was that? Proceed A oops, hang on, I turned it off. What was that? Proceed a-okay, okay, cool. So this was one. Let’s see. I did want to come to. You had mentioned t-mobile. Um, I thought this was super memorable. Um, you know, I think some people are kind of back and forth, everybody’s back and forth on everything. You know, there’s people who like it, people don’t. I mean, the branding is front and center. I thought it was fun and playful, you know?

John Shoemaker: 47:19

uh, assuming that I liked it.

Ryan Freng: 47:22

Nice, um, sorry, sorry about the double audio there. Um, yeah, I liked it. I thought it was charming, maybe that’s like just as a man having a mother being like oh, it’s kind of cute. They tried to make this work. Obviously, some of the jokes were written. Maybe all the jokes were written but I thought they did a really good, charming job. And I think t-mobile in general like their. Their commercials tend to stick in my head.

Andy Wallman: 47:48

I feel like yeah, they hang on to pink. You know you talked about that challenge uh, like geico repeating that line again and again, and again. And we always say in the agency world um, us and the clients are the first ones to burn out on, uh, maybe a particular brand equity, like pink, or repeating that line again and again and again. There’s this fight between discipline and temptation. So, yeah, they do a great job. They show a lot of their stuff in the store. Pink is always present. I guess the backstory on this one is what made me question some things Again, in that, like, how good are the creatives that are really making this, or how good are the creatives that are really making this, or how good is the judgment of the people that are really approving these things? And I guess the backstory is that they had a different idea for this ad and I don’t know if it stunk. It was just execution wasn’t there, or the performances weren’t there, or so oh, so they went comedy with it, like the reality, authentic outtakes yeah

Andy Wallman: 48:55

it’s all the outtakes and, uh, I’d love to see that at that. This beat, you know, was it really that terrible? Or was the outtake maybe it tested really really well? Um, people love that chemistry that seems so authentic. Uh, but what the heck was the one that died that that didn’t run, you know, and a couple of the times I, you, get a genuine relationship here and it seems like if this was thanksgiving, he would really be cracking up like this. But a couple times it was like I’m really gonna laugh at my mom. Yeah, we’re gonna laugh. Yeah, really, really, really. But he’s great, he’s a charming guy and, uh, you know, I’ve got zillions of people. The second they saw, male and female, were like, oh cool yeah, there was a.

John Shoemaker: 49:50

You know I loved it because it just, I mean, it really hit personal. For me it’s like very authentic and like felt. It felt to me like because I heard some people say, well, I don’t even know if that was his mom. I’m like, well, if it wasn’t, then it’s one of the best acted commercials I’ve ever seen, because it looks so like you can see the little bit of like little bit of frustration even come through with him where, like they actually are trying to do it and he’s just like, oh my gosh, you just can’t do this.

John Shoemaker: 50:23

And I thought it was funny to me to see that difference between, like he’s professional he knows how to do this and they like clearly brought in an amateur, his mom, to like here, let’s do something funny and just like how. I guess it’s probably because we often end up working with non-actors in things and you’re just like, yep, that’s trying to get an odd actor to give you the thing that you’re looking for. Um yeah there’s a comedy to that.

Andy Wallman: 50:52

You got to hit the mark, man. You got. There’s an X on the floor. For a reason we want you to walk and then stop on the X. Oh, I forgot to stop on the X. I missed, uh, the mark on the floor. Or just read the prompt. All you have to do is read that teleprompter. Maybe her vision stunk and it was too far away. No matter what they did, but to throw the original one out and go with this, I thought it was kind of funny. The other thing I wondered how short is Bradley Cooper’s dad, Because she is super short. He’s shrink with age and his father must be super tall.

Ryan Freng: 51:29

We have an idea how biology works. Let’s see. Okay, here you go. Here’s one the Planner’s Peanuts, the Roast of Mr Peanut. I mean I love the title. That was probably about all that I loved about this. And I thought, wow, that was probably about all that I loved about this. And I thought, wow, they wasted all these hilarious comedians on cheesy ass jokes and in cheesy reactions. I was like, oh my gosh, they must have got paid a lot of money. That’s all I could think of.

Andy Wallman: 52:04

I’m with you after the double encounter of roasts the roasted peanuts get it, get it Because it’s a roast. Then I just kind of questioned well, this is really a mean format. The celebrity, the comedy roast you know, you see some of the like when I grew up, as the Dean Merton celebrity roast and Don Rickles the hockey puck, and you certainly see the HBO ones that are unedited, they’re really blue. The intent is for these comics to use the really foul language and premises to zing somebody, to throw a zinger. Players for years have this pure brand, this all-American kind of apple pie kind of vibe to. You know, if you really know, like she’s seen those hbo roasts and stuff, they’re going into some deep water here. I kind of think and I question again on this one what else did the creative team not sell that make this one the winner?

John Shoemaker: 53:08

You almost think. When you want to make a joke like that, what you almost need to do is make that the butt of the joke. Be the guy who came in and thought that it was a roast.

Ryan Freng: 53:26

That would be inappropriate. That would have been hilarious.

John Shoemaker: 53:30

Then everybody’s kind of like that’s not what we meant by roast, you know Because then you. Yeah, you do.

Andy Wallman: 53:40

Pork roast at home.

John Shoemaker: 53:42


Andy Wallman: 53:45

Yeah, who the heck remembered that a couple of years ago they killed Mr Peanut in a Super Bowl ad? You really have to be paying attention to super bowl ads. One of the lines I’m sure the copywriter or the brand manager was like yes, they kept it in, they made the final cut right and like 0.03 percent of the world remembers like oh yeah, three years ago they killed out mr peanut, tried to make that a big pr.

Ryan Freng: 54:08

funny, creative thing in a super bowl actually, I mean that that kind of brings us to the next one, which I don’t have on here, which I will. I will pull it up real quick. What, like? What is the whole thing going on with m&ms like? They’re like m&ms, they’re killing off the peanuts because they don’t represent blah, blah, blah. And then maya rudolph is the new spokesperson, but then they had a commercial in the Super Bowl and that was just like me seeing headlines fly by. And then they had a commercial in the Super Bowl of like we’re back, baby, or something, and I’m like wait, was this like a thing or not a thing?

Andy Wallman: 54:43

It was a giant PR thing. They made the ad as a creative blowback. They were changing some of blowback. They were changing some of the characters. They were talking about more diversity, with these characters representing different lifestyles and stuff. They got a lot of heat from certain voices out there. That was real, really real.

Andy Wallman: 55:11

If you’re at that point in time, I think it’s like Q4 of 22, and you’re getting dragged through the mud right or wrong. You’re getting some negative publicity out there and you’re thinking, wow, we have this ad celebrating our new characters and what they represent, diversity and stuff. Um, and it’s going to be on tv in six weeks and 100 million 20 million people are going to see it. You better change that ad. So I think they had to scramble and make a new ad, which was the weirdest ad in the whole super bowl, like clam flavored M&Ms some of the audio.

Andy Wallman: 55:50

Like you know, I’ve done a lot of that music stuff and sometimes, despite best intentions, when you try to sing a lot of stuff, it just doesn’t come through. You have to make it drop-dead simple the song and the articulation and even the pacing, so that what you’re trying to sing is understood. So there’s that technical whoops, I’m trying to sing a lot of stuff in there. Uh, my eyes instead of mms. Uh, you know, when we do naming or brand naming or naming a product, whatever easy to say spell c and search. My answer is that’s so easy to say spell, see and search.

Andy Wallman: 56:33

Um, so I think that went over a lot of people’s heads. I didn’t get the first time that it was clam flavored and when I looked back I thought that was a weird. That was a really weird choice. That’s disgusting. Who. What positive association is anybody gonna make with this delicious chocolate candy peanut thing and clam flavored candy? Yeah, it’s so much wrong going on and you know you got to love my arutal from stuff, but man, it was, it felt like it. It could have got like four or five penalty flags thrown at it yeah, this is.

Ryan Freng: 57:09

This is one, too, where the celebrity I was like maya’s just awesome, like she was probably the only thing that made me feel anything positive about this, because the rest of it, like you’re explaining, I was so confused. I was like, wait, are there mayas? Is it clam flavored? Wait, help, they’re being what? They’re being held captive and now we’re releasing them and like like the story of all this? I’m like so confused and like obviously I remembered it, it didn’t make me buy m&ms, but I’m like what the is going on yeah, yeah, I love envisioning the behind the scenes stuff.

John Shoemaker: 57:46

We’re probably a lot of arguments leading up to it and certainly a lot after monday I also think that you know, I, I like, I like when they, when they have series and stuff. But there’s a danger there too, that like if you don’t like I, if I was in the bathroom, we’re getting snacks. Like on the one of the series of the thing that is on unfolding is the full story they’re trying to tell through this goofy commercial universe during the super bowl. Then I’m like I have no idea what’s going on. Like I saw a little bit of that, but like we’re just chatting as a family. So I was like, oh, maya is doing something. I missed all of this, like I. I just was like it’s like a spoof of m&ms. I guess that’s like clearly a really bad idea. So instead you should get m&ms.

Ryan Freng: 58:42

Like and that, yeah, it’s self that’s was enough of a.

John Shoemaker: 58:48

I mean, that’s what I thought the ad was, yeah, which, yeah, was okay enough for me, but to have the complexity that you just brought to it was like I didn’t get any of that. I just got that. It was really a bad idea from maya and instead just stick with your m&ms it’s interestingly, you know, come.

Andy Wallman: 59:07

I did a lot of music, a lot of comedy over the years. Rule number one is know your audience. If you’re playing at an old folks’ home, they have to hear you. If you’re playing kids, you’ve got to go fast because your attention span stinks and you can see a lot of these folks when they’re coming up with the idea.

Andy Wallman: 59:23

Who are we really talking to in there? Is it the person watching the game by themselves? Is it the party with 20 people in the living room? Is it the person watching the game by themselves? Is it the party with 20 people in the living room? Is it the bar full of people? And to your point, john, you’ve got to be really paying attention. You’ve got all the little stuff going on in this ad or in that type of idea where it’s a serious sequential story type of thing, type of thing, and a lot of the people that might be in the big living room with a lot of folks in the room with them or at the bar. They don’t even get all that. So you’re kind of maybe safest to do that slapstick stuff or really broad, simple things that no matter what audience it is, the audience of one or 50, everybody will get it, or at least have a chance to get it.

John Shoemaker: 1:00:14


Ryan Freng: 1:00:16

Yeah, that makes me think of this next one that I’ve got. I think I know where you’re going with that it’s the one let’s see.

Ryan Freng: 1:00:25

Tubi was good. Well, we can take a look at Tubi in a second. Oh, and the dog ones. There’s some good dog ones. All right, here we go. The premature electrification there’s so many pharmaceutical ads that we’re beat over the head with it. I thought it was a clever way to spoof that, to have a satire, while at the same time actually sharing the values of the RAM, ev or whatever. Now, at the end of it, you don’t hear RAM until the end. So that’s probably my biggest criticism. But I thought this was hilarious. We were all laughing while this was going on. And, yeah, the imagery is great, the lines are great, the actors are great. It’s not celebrities, you know, just getting paid to show up.

Andy Wallman: 1:01:24

I think you hit it on the head. They did a great job of threading the needle between that that spoof of a pharmaceutical ad the type of you know the category of the pharmaceutical product erectile dysfunction and then selling a benefit about a Ram EV and that is. It’s going to stay charged up, it won’t run out of juice on you, it’s going to run at full power all the time, no matter what, allegedly even though it’s not coming out for a year. You know they did a great job at making the sort of justification of the parody sell it kind of hit on some features and benefits and attributes. I think if you’re a guy you’re probably chuckling and then kind of going sweating this is me 10 years from now and then maybe a lot of women were just dying laughing their butts off. I don’t know.

Ryan Freng: 1:02:33

Yeah, we all had a good time with this one. This was one that we actually like we literally did laugh, you know, which was a genuinely fun experience. And then, at the end, I was like okay, I feel a little bit more positive about Ram.

Andy Wallman: 1:02:45

Yeah, and there were 20 jokes and every one of them hit it right out of the ballpark. You know, even if they got 50% of the jokes, it hit it great, but it was like almost 100% of the jokes were just chef-kissed.

Ryan Freng: 1:03:05

Yeah, I appreciated that one. All right, let’s see. So I mentioned the dog ones too. Like some of the ones, it was just just like aw, so there was two, and until I looked them up I had forgotten which brand was which. So there’s the Amazon one.

John Shoemaker: 1:03:24

Well, and the danger that we talked about of ending up with the same similar concept as as others. And I’m curious maybe, andy, you know the, you know some of the behind the scenes? Like it’s always interesting to me in a year where, like two movies about a magician come out at the same time with the, with the super bowl stuff, like I imagine there’s a lot of you know, like they’re trying to keep it a secret or keep it your own idea, but there’s probably some like sleuthing going on to try to figure out what other people are going to do. Do you know anything about that?

Andy Wallman: 1:04:01

I can’t give you facts, but for sure you want to keep the lid on it in hopes that you’re not going to be duplicated or replicated. But the use of pets always has tested well in babies and celebrities. In this Super Bowl ad milieu you know you’d see Budweiser doing the sad dog story, the sentimental dog story, the sentimental dog story, the little sniff dog story. Everybody loves a sentimental dog story. Amazon’s execution of it was a little strange to me. They really went on and on about the dog being a bad dog. That dog. I’d be really mad if that was my dog and dog.

Andy Wallman: 1:04:49

I’d be really mad. That’s true, yeah, that was my dog. And then they’re selling. It seemed like there were maybe there’s contentiousness on how it should end. You know, I thought it was over when they showed the crate. Great Skippy’s going to come with us on all our trips now and never rip up our stuff again and we’ll be happier and Skippy will be happier because we got the crate that we can take with us. And then there’s sort of an ending after the ending, where they’re like and Skippy gets a little brother or sister which I didn’t think they needed. What the heck was that? Can I get a puppy on Amazon now? What? Yeah, right, so the reason, you know, choosing the dog, that’s an old go-to money. In the bank tactic you can’t make people sad, or, you know, feel warm fuzzies and feels with a great dog at your amount of great creative.

Ryan Freng: 1:05:43

Yeah, and that’s a good point the confusedness with the story Because, like I was like, wait, are they going to put the dog in the crate and just leave it. I was like, wait, are they punishing the dog? And I was like, wait, are they going to put the dog in the crate and just leave it. I was like, wait, are they punishing the dog? And I was like, oh, they got a new dog. Oh, they want their home destroyed even more. So Do you recall that being, you know, a little bit confusing?

Andy Wallman: 1:06:04

In terms of that confusing storytelling. Comparatively, the last few years Amazon ads were really tight. You know they had one on a bathtub and some celebrities and stuff, but it was just brilliant. Beginning, middle end, there was no fat, no waste, and this one it kind of fumbled at the goal line. And then, when you get a sec, we did lose your video. There was no fat, no waste, and this one it kind of fumbled at the goal line near the end for me.

Ryan Freng: 1:06:25

And then when you get a sec, we did lose your video, we still got your audio, okay. And then we have the and I didn’t remember this brand, but again a commercial. So it’s a failure from that regard, but I enjoyed the story of this puppy, the farmer’s dog food commercial. You know, it’s the story of a girl and her dog, right, which I thought was super, super sweet, and especially like the old dog towards the end of the ad with its old face, I was like, oh, so cute.

Andy Wallman: 1:07:04

I love this one. This, I think, was my favorite For a lot of reasons. You know it’s the same dog. It’s the life of the dog right.

Andy Wallman: 1:07:17

So you get the heartstrings with oh, it’s Skippy or whatever, our lovable dog. But to have it be this. You know, if you’ve had a dog it really strikes you because you feel lost when you know the dog is going to be running towards the end of the line. You know you don’t want to say goodbye, know the dog is going to be, uh, running towards the end of the line yeah, you know you don’t want to say goodbye to the dog and and man.

Andy Wallman: 1:07:48

They, they the execution, the storytelling, the way a shot directed just play that to a tee like I totally I’m the guy who cried. A hallmark hit really easy, um, but but to uh nail it like they did was was just beautiful. You know, you really felt like. You know dogs are important to a lot of people and a lot of people’s families, and when you get that time when you need to say goodbye or start saying goodbye, it sucks, um. What I love, though, is this, this underdog Cinderella kind of deal.

Andy Wallman: 1:08:23

Farmer’s Dog is an eight-year-old brand out of brooklyn that nobody knows about, and they they got on a mat. You know they’re selling 10 million dollars spend. I think they’re going to get back. And then some and then some and then some, because of how popular this was, how well it scored, how good the ad was, they had a 50% off deal with their website. It’s a delivery food service for sort of quote-unquote fresh dog food. It’s not dry stuff, it’s made with quote-unquote real ingredients and stuff. So, out of all of the brands that take this gamble and pray that their investment comes off, I got a funny feeling these folks might be sitting at the top in terms of that return and investment. Raise brand awareness, attempt to purchase it. Just so many great beats. I bet if you’re working at Farmer’s Dog today, you’re still riding that high.

John Shoemaker: 1:09:22


Ryan Freng: 1:09:23

Yeah, it maybe wasn’t my favorite, but I think it was definitely one of my top um and I’m I’m not the target audience, but I I did love the story and I think the only thing and this, this happened with the, the wood company a couple years ago, the log company or whatever I was like what, what brand was that? Dang it. It was so good and now I have to look it up but I mean, arguably that’s that’s good too, like you don’t know what it is, so you got to go look it up and you spend that time and make that happen.

Andy Wallman: 1:09:53

Yeah, Some folks, like last year was crypto brands. Um, be that. Who the heck are they? They’re out of nowhere.

Andy Wallman: 1:10:01

What’s crypto? And look at what happened to that. A lot of them just went straight down the toilet since then, for a variety of reasons. I love when that one underdog, that one Cinderella, does do it right, because it takes a lot of courage Like $7 million might be three years worth of ad budget for this brand and say we’ll put a lot of chips on the super bowl, uh, and have it work, you know, good idea yeah, john, you have.

Ryan Freng: 1:10:36

You have a dog, you’ve had dogs, uh, and you have animals. Like do you?

John Shoemaker: 1:10:40

remember this. I did have like an emotional reaction to this one. I think I did not remember the brand and, um, it did. I didn’t actually go look it up later either. I think I read about it as like oh, you know, the farmer’s dog was good, and then I was kind of like okay, but then I was like okay, I. Then I was like okay, I remember two dog ads. I remember this one and I remember the other, amazon one. So like, in recalling them later, it was hard for me to like remember exactly. But you know, hopefully, yeah, it was really well done. It’s probably one of the best stories that was told in commercials this year. So the question is whether the brand sticks to people strong enough.

Andy Wallman: 1:11:35

I’m sure I think that this one ran first and then Amazon. I’m sure this one ran first and the Far farmer’s dog people are feeling great, and then the Amazon one comes on and farmer’s dog is mad at Amazon and Amazon. Seeing the farmer’s dog before. Amazon is mad at farmer’s dog. Damn it. People are going to get confused.

Ryan Freng: 1:11:56

The dog’s even kind of looking like that At least they didn’t put the dogs behind a soundboard right.

Ryan Freng: 1:12:11

Yeah, that would have been hilarious. This was probably my favorite um 15. Uh, it just really worked and my kids all stopped and were like wait, what just happened? Dad did hang on, who’s got the remote? Guys like it like stopped what was going on and like Tubi, what’s Tubi? So like there was like a discussion and a thing and you know like it’s definitely gimmicky, but I love the pulling you out of the experience that you’re having into the world of your technology or whatever. Like I thought that was super clever probably my second favorite.

Andy Wallman: 1:12:49

It was just so disruptive and whether you were watching alone by yourself or you were with 50 people in a bar, that’s loud everybody went. What’s going on? I’d love to see all the way. But all the comebacks that people had dad, yeah, what you do, yeah, if you’re a chief, you go, stay in private. But that disruption for a nobody brand. They’re sort of the B team of Streaming movies, you know. You look at the content. It’s like okay, okay, maybe if I’m bored I’ll watch that. But but a lot of people know to be now and I think Fox might even own. So no, ox gets kind of their own inventory, they can run promos and things like that. So, my, maybe it was like a really low spend on Fox corporate sport to run that. But to take that uh kind of nobody name on Saturday, last Saturday, and make it a somebody name by Monday, way to go, way to go yeah, let’s see.

Ryan Freng: 1:13:55

And they had. They had the other one too, which was more weird, maybe less direct, you see, to be rabbit hole, which I guess had me just watching to be like what is going on. Uh, the other commercial worked way more for me, but this one I think it was, and maybe they had two versions or a couple different versions of it, but I’m like constantly like watching, like what is going on, like, like obviously there’s some brand here.

Andy Wallman: 1:14:26

Ultra, ultra creepy and by design, you know, I wonder if the assignment was. We’re just going to be as weird as we can possibly be. So people talk about us On the flip side. You know a lot of people were having nightmares with the creepy rabbit flip side. You know a lot of people were having nightmares with a creepy rabbit, uh, starring, starring in their dreams. Uh, I don’t know if it was the the choice I would have gone with if I was creative director or brand manager around that one, um. But you know a lot of people certainly talked about it, which is kind of what they want it’s definitely memorable.

Ryan Freng: 1:15:02

It makes me think of, like turned down for what you know, that music video, if you’re familiar with it, from the daniels, where it’s the one, one of the directors or creatives behind that music video, and basically his, his pelvis is out of control and just thrusting and he can’t stop it. It’s like the music is causing it to happen and he’s like breaking through walls and the ceilings and floors and falling all over and like the weirdest, craziest thing ever. And it’s one of those things where you see it and you’re like have you seen this? You’ve got to see this thing, it’s crazy.

Andy Wallman: 1:15:40

I love it. I love it. I’m sure they knew when that that thing got approved, um, that there was going to be some you know contention. I’m sure there were plenty of people when they were trying to sell it through the chain, uh, at the ad agency with the client, uh, you know, I got. We can’t do this. It’s too creepy, it’s too weird.

Ryan Freng: 1:16:06

Somebody won that one Again, being bold and trying stuff. Kudos to them.

Andy Wallman: 1:16:13

Yeah, go big or go home. A lot of folks would say that right.

John Shoemaker: 1:16:16


Ryan Freng: 1:16:18

Yeah, let’s see, I do have. Like you know, this one was charming. Where is it? Disney was charming, you know, despite all the craziness that’s going on there. Low production value yeah, available things, but work to give you all the feels. Um, you know, movies make us feel things, and especially disney movies and I I think it’s useful for their brand right now, when you know the last couple years have been kind of tough for them and they’re laying staff off and there’s bad imagery and you’re, or you know, bad brand image yeah, if you got a daughter too, you know I could tell you every line from ariel or little mermaid or aladdin or whatever.

Andy Wallman: 1:17:15

Uh, you know, it certainly hit and hit you and the power of the brand 100 years. You know you’re gonna have grandma and a five-year-old both going oh yeah working on the camera.

Ryan Freng: 1:17:32

Positive feels, oh, thanks, um. And then there is, you know, thinking of positive feels, uh, and this one doesn’t let me in bed so we’ll have to here we go so that he gets us the, uh, the jesus one. I know it can be polarizing, um, but I thought it was like great value for the brand and just kind of sweet. So this was like just images. This one is Be Childlike, just the childlike love, like showing that I thought was super impactful. I have to imagine that Just their website numbers Went crazy After this. This is a short one. I think they had two 30s, so this one is Be Childlike. And then the other one was Love your Enemies, which which, especially over the last couple years, you know the.

Andy Wallman: 1:18:30

The group that brought you by you know this is brought to you by went from you know nobody to somebody. Yeah, um, low production value. I kept thinking, were these all shoots or stock? Did they send somebody to getty and have them read every photo? Yeah, obviously some of these were from big ones that were staged and stuff In. There was a lot of blowback, like what Jesus has spent, you know, 20 million bucks. Yeah, jesus, you know, given out a lot of soup or something, and I thought it’s funny, like, hey dad, why did we convert from Judaism again? Well, it was a Super Bowl ad, that’s why. But you know, I hear you, I was raised to the Catholic and the messages of love thy neighbor, you know, brace your enemy or whatever. Right, yeah, you know, embrace your enemy or whatever. Great, yeah, you know it takes. I bet there’s a lot of boardroom discussion with whether or not to pursue this and make that spend and sort of stick their neck out there.

Ryan Freng: 1:19:38

Yeah, and you brought up like the behind the scenes is really fascinating. It’d be good to see you know after a a few months if people I’m sure people can make an analysis of this. But, like you know, how effective was it right? Um, do you, do you really like, is a group like this going to come back and do commercial next year, or is that like? No, we did that, we’ve got our name on the map and now we can do other types of marketing. You know, because there’s some brands that are going to be coming back year to year over year, but then you know, like farmers, like, are they going to come back or did they hit it and are they good for five years, or you know how long?

Andy Wallman: 1:20:11

I just hope it’s not like a pack fund and um, they went through the cheeses store to try to get pack oh my gosh, yeah, yeah, um, yeah, what do you guys have any?

John Shoemaker: 1:20:20

other ones that we haven’t seen there’s.

Ryan Freng: 1:20:22

I don’t know, I’m cynical. Yeah, do you guys have any other ones that we haven’t seen? There’s like the Remy Martin cognac.

John Shoemaker: 1:20:29

I was like eh, it doesn’t make me want to get that cognac.

Ryan Freng: 1:20:32

It’s not a super.

Andy Wallman: 1:20:37

It looked good and stuff. And I think her ads her two booze ads, which was kind of interesting for a superstar athlete, some people in social media, yeah, and, and I think her ads her to booze ads, which was kind of interesting for, you know, a superstar athlete, some people in social media here for golf first, you know, promoting booze. I think they were back-to-back as well, which is interesting. She tweeted like Man’s out of the way. I’d be curious you take on Run with it the NFL. As you know, I love the athletic. Go on, I’d be curious to take on Run With it the NFL.

Andy Wallman: 1:21:10

I love that it had a lot of going on, but from a production standpoint, as guys who shoot a lot of footage, I’m curious to get your take on what it was all about.

Ryan Freng: 1:21:18

Yeah, we’ll pull that up, John, do you remember that one?

John Shoemaker: 1:21:25


Ryan Freng: 1:21:27

Yeah, they like teased it before the game and then like at the beginning, and then they’re like and we’re going to have the reveal at the end.

Andy Wallman: 1:21:34

I’m not sure why I remember that one. It was the first day of After Half when, aaron Andrews, it starts with a fake out. It looks like Aaron Andrews, it starts with a take-out. It looks like Aaron Andrews is interviewing somebody on the sidelines.

Ryan Freng: 1:21:48

Yeah, here I’ll get it.

John Shoemaker: 1:21:52

Oh, that maybe sounds vaguely familiar. Yeah, I can’t place it at the moment.

Ryan Freng: 1:22:01

All right, here we go.

Andy Wallman: 1:22:03

And they bring candles, here we go. And they bring cameras, yeah.

Ryan Freng: 1:22:07

And we were watching their pregame show and they ran the pre-show part of it in the pre-show. So we’re like they’re like who’s in the bird suit? We’re like I don’t know, I don’t care At that young kid.

John Shoemaker: 1:22:20

They were like at that young kid they were like can we see the halftime show? We want to see who’s in the bird suit. They were very much invested in seeing who was in the bird suit. But we have to give you something else during halftime usually because I want to preview the halftime show before we decide if people are watching it or not.

Andy Wallman: 1:22:43

Yeah, I don’t know.

John Shoemaker: 1:22:47

I wasn’t even paying attention, okay.

Ryan Freng: 1:22:54

Whoa, what was that? I had you muted for a second. Oh it was. I did not recognize him at all.

Andy Wallman: 1:23:05

I love that. I’m a super nerd. I’ll pay it right away that’s awesome to bring in to bring in younger and older celebrities, sports celebrities. There’s a YouTube star there. He’s the guy who said oh, I missed the shot when they’re running through the wall. If you’re social or YouTube, you get that oh, mr Beast.

Ryan Freng: 1:23:32

All the little kids got Mr Beast, they’re like Mr Beast, and all the old people are like who’s Mr Beast?

Andy Wallman: 1:23:37

yeah, so just that casting. That’s Jim Kelly, former Bills quarterback, looking like a great grandpa there. So the woman is she Flores. She’s the quarterback of the world champion, mexico City Women’s Flag Football League. Now that’s on the map. Now she’s on the map. They’re appealing to younger and older, they’re appealing to Hispanic Latino audiences and at the end, they’re appealing to hispanic latino audiences, um, and at the end they’re saying women, we, we love, uh, you know to, we love the idea of what you can do to help the nfl in the future. So outreach to female audience as well, strategically and in terms of executions, like check, check, check, check, awesome I thought, check, awesome, I thought.

Ryan Freng: 1:24:24

Yeah, it was super engaging and I know the girls were super interested in Flores, her story and were asking questions about her what does she do, what does she play? I thought that was really cool, that they kind of got excited about her.

Andy Wallman: 1:24:41

Yeah, maybe the risk of some of this stuff is who is looking up all these facts like an ad nerd and none of it resonates. But even if you just saw the title card at the end, that’s Billie Jean King. There Way to go, Billie Jean King, Even if you just saw the title card at the end. Great message Women inclusion in the NFL. They wrote for more female, younger, all kinds of different audiences.

Ryan Freng: 1:25:07

Yeah, it’s definitely fun. Yeah, I feel dumb now not recognizing Devontae Adams.

Andy Wallman: 1:25:14

It drove me nuts. On Billy Jean King too. I was like, yes, you know who that is yeah. Finally figured it out Speaking of fun. Jeff Seuss had fun talking with John and Ryan about Super Bowl ads Nate.

Ryan Freng: 1:25:30

Thank you for coming on. I appreciate it. I want to give you a chance. You said your favorite. What was your least favorite?

Andy Wallman: 1:25:38

Thank you for asking. The penalty flag should have been a Jack the Trouble gang, the GM ad with will ferrell so oh yeah, let me pull that out he’s.

Andy Wallman: 1:25:52

He’s been, you know, in their super bowl ads for the last couple of years. They wanted to make the ads uh about, or the ad about electric electric vehicles, ev. Their market share stinks. So yeah, to try to raise awareness to increase sales is terrific. Um will franell funny. Great production, uh execution, everything. The strategy was the dumbest in the world and a colossal waste of money that nobody cares about. The point of the ad was to say we made a deal with Netflix and now you’re going to see GM EV vehicles in Netflix programming, whether it’s a zombie movie or a renaissance movie or whatever it is.

Ryan Freng: 1:26:39

Or Squid Game.

Andy Wallman: 1:26:41

Yeah, squid Game, stranger Things, who cares that? Gm and notflix made a deal. Yeah, you know who cares that? You know, maybe one of the terms of the deal? Uh, notflix says, well, you’re like, yeah, yeah, you give us all this money and we’re gonna run at. Uh, we’re gonna showcase your vehicles exclusively and xyz programming.

Andy Wallman: 1:27:03

And you’re going to give us a Superbowl ad and it deals off you know, sort of that way, who on earth thought this was a good idea and anybody would care that this sort of deal that you would normally see as a boring press release is actually going to get this type of money? You know, I just get the biggest. Who cares I don’t know of money? You know, I just got the biggest two carriers out of us. I couldn’t believe they did it.

Ryan Freng: 1:27:28

I completely agree. It felt like the failure of star power again, but then also the failure of Netflix power, because I love how you phrased that as well. Of something that would be like a boring press release, they turned into a Super Bowl ad. What? Who thought that was a great idea?

Andy Wallman: 1:27:48

yeah, like good, god, I mean, and maybe that was the you know, because I’m the ceo. That’s why, yeah, there’s, there’s goofy human fallibility, yeah, uh, with all this stuff. You know you, we don’t know why these decisions get made. Sometimes it’s ego or hubris or just poor judgment. But whoever had the final say on that one, maybe they had to do it. If they didn’t, there should be a meeting with them this week to talk about their judgment.

Ryan Freng: 1:28:21

Yeah, and John, I wanted to give you a chance too to say what was your top and your in your least favorite oh boy, yeah, so top.

John Shoemaker: 1:28:29

Oh boy, um, oops, hang on, I lost you on the video.

Ryan Freng: 1:28:39

Okay, now I don’t have you on the video. Okay, now I don’t have you on the video. There you are. Okay, hang on.

John Shoemaker: 1:28:47

There we go, all kinds of things. I’m like texting people upstairs saying like get off the Wi-Fi please. I Mean I get like it’s not them, it’s the best set. But I do berwarks out to me. I mean I get like it’s not the, it’s the best ad. But Uber walks out to me as as really good Cause. I I remember the. It’s like somehow it was just memorable to me.

Ryan Freng: 1:29:11

It was effective.

John Shoemaker: 1:29:13

And then you know, the the clueless one might’ve been my least favorite Cause I was also just like it’s a little cringy too to have people like let’s relive this role from 20 years ago.

John Shoemaker: 1:29:32

Super cringy, I didn’t know the brand, didn’t remember it, and I was also like. I have fond memories of watching that movie with my sister over and over again after school. But like it fails, I have fond memories of watching that movie with my sister over and over again after school. It fails to hold on to the dignity of an actress like Alicia Silverstone. I’m sure you’ve done more dignified roles since then.

Ryan Freng: 1:30:01

They kind of throw her under the bus a little, she goes along with it. That kind of thing. Yeah, you’re right, they kind of throw her under the bus a little, yeah, and she goes along with it.

Andy Wallman: 1:30:09

It’d be brilliant if she’s got a new series coming out in a month. And she and her agent agree like well, let’s take the money and I’ll be popular again for 10 minutes before my new show or movie comes out.

Ryan Freng: 1:30:22

Yeah, Exactly Alright, well, well, I think I shared mine, I think okay, so definitely, planters was probably the one that I thought was the dumbest. Um, I guess it was memorable, like it was effective in that way, but I thought it was just so dumb and poorly done. Just people took the money and ran and then, yeah, I mean like I’m a 12 year old boy, so the premature electrification RAM. You know it’s a car commercial doing some silliness. I feel like they don’t do that much. They’re always just like so sexy, they try to be so sexy and you know, so I don’t know horsepower and blah, blah, blah, stuff that I don’t care about.

Ryan Freng: 1:31:09

So I appreciate them doing something a little bit different. So that’s what I got, all right, well, we’ll let you go here. Let me get this out of the way. Thanks so much, andy, for coming on and hanging out with us and talking about Super Bowl commercial, winners and losers. I feel better for the weekend when I’m probably going to continue to talk about all of these things with my friends. So thank you for coming on.

Andy Wallman: 1:31:37

You know. Likewise, I really appreciate you asking, love talking about this stuff and just like seeing you guys. You know I love what you’re doing with your company and seeing your success over the last bunch of years. It’s cool to hang out with you two again, even if it’s through blue-tube rectangles, talking about how people wasted millions of dollars and hopefully exceeded, while spending millions of dollars. Appreciate it, guys.

Ryan Freng: 1:32:02

We’re going to shout out KW2 Ideas. That’s your website, right?

Andy Wallman: 1:32:06

KW2 Madison.

Ryan Freng: 1:32:08

All right, kw2madisoncom, let’s fix that real quick. Check that out. Your president and co-owner over there. Here we go, got it. Check that out. You can see Andy’s creative mind at work over there. And Monday you’re going to be at the MMP, the Madison Media Professionals Group doing this again, so you’re going to be talking about Super Bowl stuff.

Andy Wallman: 1:32:37

Correct, correct. That group is great, you know, you know you’re part of that. I want to get more into production and talk about lighting and audio and all that stuff with that group.

Ryan Freng: 1:32:49

Oh yeah, that’ll be a blast. So check that out. And of course, this will be turned into a podcast eventually. Happy Hour Podcast. Let’s Backflipcom slash. Let’s Backflip show. Just look it up, probably down in the links below, or something like that. Thanks for tuning in. Thanks for hanging out, john. You got anything else for us?

John Shoemaker: 1:33:07

Just make better ads. Make your ads better for the big game.

Ryan Freng: 1:33:14

From all of us to you. Thanks for tuning in everyone. We’ll see you next time. Bye.

author avatar
Ryan Freng
Owner and creative director. Shall we begin like David Copperfield? 'I am born...I grew up.' Wait, I’m running out of space? Ah crap, ooh, I’ve got it...