There was plenty to be excited about with Super Bowl LI. Between the very competitive second half and the Lady Gaga halftime show, this was an NFL championship game for the record books. Luckily, there was one other reason to be happy while watching the game.
Though the majority of ads were spoiled online almost a week early, the ones that did make their first appearance during the game more than made up for it. And when talking about those commercials, it’s practically impossible to lead with anything other than the first trailer for “Stranger Things 2,” which is what Netflix has dubbed the second season of the show.
What appeared at first to be a retro commercial from Eggo soon revealed itself as a first look at the next chapter of “Stranger Things” — and we are already riveted. While it was a short look, it holds big promise and it looks like the Upside Down may be leaking into the real world. The trailer also announced the premiere date: Cancel your Halloween plans because “Stranger Things 2” premieres on Netflix on Oct. 31.
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Many companies took the opportunity to send messages of American inclusion and compassion with their ads. Coca-Cola reused an advertisement from 2014 that celebrated diversity with “America the Beautiful” sung in a handful of languages, while 84 Lumber offered a nearly six-minute story about a mother and daughter on a journey to enter the United States… Only to find a border wall awaiting them.
Only the first 90 seconds of 84 Lumber’s ad aired, after it was rejected by FOX, but it urged viewers to view the rest of the story online.
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Naturally, it wouldn’t be a Super Bowl without some big budget movie trailers and this year was no different. New looks at “The Fate of the Furious,” “Transformers: The Last Night,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” were among those to make it into the big game.
And if one Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson trailer wasn’t enough for you in “The Fate of the Furious,” viewers also got a brand new sneak peek at the upcoming “Baywatch” adaptation.
So while this may have been a year that saw more commercials unveiled online than ever, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t plenty to keep you happy during the game. And that’s a good thing — what’s the point of the Super Bowl without awesome commercials?
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