The Doritos commercials were particularly dumb, and the Coca-Cola ads were pretty lame. There wasn't much to write about food-wise about the Super Bowl ads. And we're not counting the Wendy's slapping chicken sandwich ad since it aired after the game.
There was one commercial, for a diet soft drink, that did exemplify the dieting mentality.
PepsiMax ran an ad at the 8:17 mark in the first quarter entitled "Love Hurts." The hapless guy, similar to the beer ad hapless guys, is seen trying to order French fries but his wife gets him (by kicking his thigh) to order the fruit cup, his face is later smashed into a pie on the kitchen counter, and then tries to sneak a fast food sandwich in the shower, but has the sandwich taken from him and replaced in his mouth with a bar of soap.
Of course, the man is allowed to drink the PepsiMax because the soft drink has no calories.
The tie-in is that the diet soft drink is as much fun as the French fries, pie, and hamburger, but without the built-in calorie problem. If you getting most of your food fun from diet drinks, no wonder that diets don't last too long, or do too well.
Of course, sneaking food in the shower isn't a healthy way to live a better eating lifestyle.
Given that diet drinks anecdotally led to eating more food, pushing the diet drink might increase sales, but isn't necessarily the best way to improved eating.
And when the dieting target (and the young woman who got knocked out by the product) is in better shape than the person doing the pushing, well, that seems weird even in the world of advertising.
"Yeah, I want to drink a soft drink where I weigh too much and drinking it makes me angry and jealous enough to commit battery." Uh, no thanks.
Super Bowl ads tend to run more in the dumb category than typical advertising, but there still needs to be a remote tie-in with the product. PepsiMax tried to imply that it is as cool as the forbidden treats (it isn't) and the lasting memories of the ad are jealousy and violence. The ad and the product don't look so tasty after all.