At some point in the past 20 years, the Super Bowl halftime show became THE SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW!!! Scientists have been able to pinpoint the origins of this phenomenon to 1991’s Super Bowl XXV, when the New Kids on the Block took the stage. That marks a clear delineation between old-timey pigskin entertainment and superstar extravaganza. In 1990, the show was played by a collection of marching bands, but the year after it was Gloria Estefan, and in 1993 it was Michael Jackson. This year’s choice of chart-topping pop star Katy Perry is consistent with contemporary Super Bowl halftime logic. But things just might change thanks to a band called The Nasty Delicious and a male fairy godmother.
Craig Robinson and his band want to play that halftime show and in a new three-part web series for Pepsi, he’s going to show he’s got some magic on his side. We don’t know what will happen, or what the effect on the big game might be, but the banter between Robinson and his fairy godmother is enough to already make this better than Elvis Presto.
Read more about this and all our picks for the best in brand creativity this week.
What: The NBA marks Martin Luther King Jr. Day by using classic footage to celebrate its own evolution in breaking down barriers between race, gender and more.
Who: NBA, Translation
Why We Care: For the most part, it’s ill-advised for a brand to piggyback on solemn occasions (so many face-palm-y tweets…). But the NBA found a cool way to illustrate the power of Dr. King’s message through its own history. From Charlie Cooper becoming the first African-American signed to an NBA contract and Bill Russell becoming the league’s first African-American coach, to Violet Palmer becoming the first female referee and the response from fans and players to Donald Sterling, it’ll give any fan goosebumps.
What: What indeed. Dave, a typical everyday guy, struts some serious, um, stuff due to his joy at the large savings he has just made on his auto insurance with U.K. price comparison service MoneySuperMarket.
Who: MoneySuperMarket, Mother London
Why We Care: It’s so weird it works. What an oddly endowed guy wearing a suit on top and Daisy Dukes down below, twerking his way down the street has to do with insurance prices we don’t know, but we just couldn’t look away.
What: A four-minute short film that beautifully captures Sweden’s bleakest weather and, Volvo says, serves as a “tribute to Sweden at its worst.” The company further explains that without the harsh Swedish winters it would not have become what it is today, or make the cars that it does.
Who: Volvo, Forsman & Bodenfors
Why We Care: First, it’s a great piece of film and portrait of a people and country. Second, whether an epic split or a LOLVO, it continues the brand’s innovative and amazing creativity in its marketing.
What: Pepsi hedges its halftime bets, using a three-part web series to pit Craig Robinson and the Nasty Delicious against the pop power of Katy Power.
Who: Pepsi, The Brooklyn Brothers
Why We Care: Not everyone wants to “Roar” at halftime, so Pepsi’s created this great sideshow with Comedy Central and the always hilarious Robinson–who will perform on Key & Peele’s Super Bowl Special on January 30–to get more people interested and hyped for its halftime.
What: Terry Crews is back for Old Spice in all his muscle flexing, screaming, and exploding glory.
Who: Old Spice, Wieden+Kennedy Portland
Why We Care: It’s a credit to both Crews and Wieden+Kennedy Portland that they’ve been able to keep this crazy train rolling for so long. However insane these ads get, they’re still capable of surprise, delight, and complete batsh*t brand craziness.