Best and Worst Ads of the 2023 Super Bowl? Top Creatives and Execs Share Their Picks!

In the advertising world, Super Bowl Sunday is about anything but football. It’s about the commercials! Ad agency pros from throughout Chicago and across the country chatted with Screen about highlights and lowlights from the epic event…

SCREEN: What was your favorite spot of the Super Bowl?

FCB Chicago Executive Producer Whitney Cusack: Between creepy rabbits and being a disruptor of parties across the nation, I honestly think Tubi won the night. The “Rabbit Holes” :60 made me laugh while also slightly terrifying me lol. Click here for all of Whitney’s faves from the night.

Leo Burnett Creative Director Jeff Candido: Just like last year’s QR code spot for Coinbase, my favorite ad this year stood out by feeling like someone hit pause in the middle of the Super Bowl advertising onslaught: the TurboTax Safety Dance spot. It’s simple, it made me smile, I know what brand it’s for, and I know what they’re trying to tell me. Click here for more from Jeff!

Optimus Editor Emily Chapman: I feel like you just can’t miss with Will Ferrell. His comedic delivery paired with the backdrop of popular shows like Stranger Things and Squid Game came together really well to showcase both GM and Netflix. Click here for all of Emily’s picks and pans!

Casting Director David O’Connor: Workday “Rockstar” spot felt like it belonged there. Had the mix of absurdity and star talent. It was relatable for the average viewer, and I remembered the product after the first viewing. I was really looking for something that caught my attention amongst a very safe crowd of commercials. Here are all of David’s picks and pans from the Big Game.

VMLY&R Executive Producer Amy Turner: Dunkin’ I love a culturally relevant moment, self-deprecation and a simple catchy line of copy. Click here for everything Amy loved and didn’t love!

SCREEN: What was your least favorite spot of the night or a spot you felt could have been more successful?

Cutters Studios Editor Michael Lippert: Hellman’s John Hamm and Brie Larson was a missed opportunity. Two great talents, plus Pete Davidson. I think it would have been funnier if they’d left it at Pete saying, “I’m gonna eat you” and then not shown them all standing together at a party. But maybe that would have been a bit too morbid for the Super Bowl. Click here for more from Michael!

Cinematographer Chris Rejano: I don’t have a least favorite but I feel like the car spots were very pedestrian, no pun intended. There has to be a better way to showcase new cars. Here is everything Christopher loved and didn’t love from the Big Game!

Tessa Films Director Tim Mason: I didn’t go to advertising school but I’m guessing “Make sure your brand isn’t just talking to itself” has to be a topic that’s covered. If so, the Roasting of Mr. Peanut should probably be used as Example #1. Click here for Tim’s faves from the Super Bowl slate!

SCREEN: What would you like to see more or less of in terms of advertising in next year’s Super Bowl?

Quriosity Executive Producer and Founder Qadree Holmes: Many of us sound like broken records, but I’d love to see the 80% of diverse faces that appeared on screen to be matched with higher percentages of women and minority owned involvement. We need to see stronger representation of women and minority production companies, directors and editors involved in producing Super Bowl-level work. Click here for all of Q’s picks and pans from the night!

Highdive Creative Director Casey Stern: Comedy! We saw so many brands move away from manifestos and platitudes about saving the world. It was really refreshing. I know when I’ve eaten eight buffalo wings, three slices of pizza and only-a-higher-power-knows-how-much beer cheese dip, I want to laugh. Click here for everything Casey had to say about the Super Bowl slate!

WoW Studios Executive Producer Ross Greenblat: I’d like to see more storytelling in spots. I think this year was a little underwhelming with that. Click here for all of the picks and pans from Ross!

Thank you to all of our panelists for chiming in on this year’s Super Bowl slate! Check back here at SCREEN for more insight and interviews from advertising creatives across the country. You can also click right here to subscribe to our weekly email newsletter.

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