Best of Super Bowl 2014 ads: Bud Light, RadioShack and more

doritos-super-bowl-xlviii-ad.jpgAdvertisers paid $4 million-plus for the privilege of reaching the biggest TV audience of the year in Super Bowl XLVIII. Did they get their money's worth?

In these cases, definitely. Here are Zap2it's picks for the best ads of the 2014 Super Bowl; come back throughout the game for a refreshed list. Also, check out our picks for the worst ads here.

Bud Light: Epic Night, part I

We aren't sure how this ad is going to turn out, but Bud Light has sent an unsuspecting, non-actor named Ian on a wild night by accepting a Bud Light from a girl in a bar. Kudos to the ploy of having an on-going plot all night with everyone waiting to see what's next.
 
-- Andrea Reiher


Doritos: Time Machine 

First of all, anything that runs on Doritos is a good thing. Secondly, anything made out of a giant cardboard box is also a good thing. Lastly, random guy hugging old guy from the "future" was the first ad to have made us laugh out loud during this Super Bowl.

-- Kiley Thompson




Bud Light: Epic Night, part II

The legendary night continues when Ian meets Don Cheadle with a llama, twins, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is going to crush him at "tiny tennis." Hee.

-- Andrea Reiher



Hyundai: Dad gets some help

Hyundai had a winning ad in last year's Super Bowl, and this year's spot was pretty excellent as well. Every parent watching was going, "Yep," at just about every save-the-kid moment.

-- Rick Porter


RadioShack: The phone call

Sure, I'm a child of the 80s, but no fewer than 15 pop-culture references - Mary Lou Retton, Devo, Chuckie, California Raisins, Erik Estrada, Hulk Hogan just to name a few - in a 30 second ad is nothing short of awesome. And we've wondered how RadioShack has stayed in business for this long anyway. It seems "they're not gonna take it ... anymore."

-- Kiley Thompson



SquareSpace: The Internet as a zombie attack

It's not exactly clear what SquareSpace is, but if it can save us from a zombie-like attack of memes, pop-up ads and "likes," that's just plain awesome.

-- Laurel Brown



Cheerios: Gracie is getting a puppy!

The original ad starring Gracie and her family was brilliant (she piled cereal on her dad to protect his heart!), and this is a fitting follow-up. It seems that clever little Gracie is using an impending baby brother to get herself a dog. Go Gracie!

-- Laurel Brown



GoDaddy: I quit

In a refreshing change from its usual cheesecake-heavy Super Bowl ads, GoDaddy had John Turturro introduce us to a woman named Gwen, who quit her job "in front of 100 million people" so she could start her own puppetry business with GoDaddy's web-hosting help. Who konws if that was really the first time Gwen was telling her boss she quit, but it worked pretty well nonetheless.

-- Rick Porter



Pistachios: Stephen Colbert times two

Wonderful Pistachios usually goes sub-B-list for its spokespeople, but Stephen Colbert is a big step up for the campaign. So was the quality of the split spot, with Colbert understating in the first half and the going way, way over the top in part 2.

-- Rick Porter





Coca-Cola: It's Beautiful

Never has a title for an ad been more appropriate. The multilingual recording of "America the Beautiful" played over images celebrating America's diversity was touching without being cloying. It was, in a word, beautiful. Well done, Coke.

-- Billy Nilles



Audi: Beware the Doberhuahua

While the Doberhuahua "compromise" was terrifying and the actual product placement for Audi was minimal, the inclusion of Sarah McLachlan as an advocate for the dog was sheer genius.

-- Laurel Brown



Kia: Take the red key!

"The Matrix" is old enough now that using it as the basis for an ad feels like a fun throwback rather than a played-out idea. Add Morpheus singing opera on top of that? Well played, Kia.

-- Rick Porter



Dannon Oikos: "Full House" reunion

Not only is it a reunion of the father figures from "Full House," but it implies Bob Saget, John Stamos and Dave Coulier still live together in a house somewhere. Also, a real "Full House" sequel might be in the works.

-- Andrea Reiher



Budweiser: Puppy Love

Super Bowl XLVIII was a very good night for Anheuser Busch. Not only did they win early on with their humorous Bud Light spots, but they brought all the feels in this Budweiser spot featuring the iconic Clydesdales -- this time in love with a precious puppy. You can never go wrong with cute. Never.

-- Billy Nilles

Photo/Video credit: Doritos