Super Bowl Sunday is America's unofficial holiday, and the buildup to the game is matched only by the anticipation of the commercials during the game. Here is our list of 10 of the most memorable spots in Super Bowl history.
McDonalds Showdown (1993)
The NBA was arguably at the height of its popularity when the fast food giant aired this spot during Super Bowl XXVII. The premise was simple: the game's biggest stars -- Larry Bird and Michael Jordan -- in a game of H-O-R-S-E, with a Big Mac for the winner.
Pepsi: Your Cheatin' Heart (1996)
A classically clever spot in which a Coca-Cola delivery man tries to swipe a Pepsi from an adjacent cooler. Comic touch: The inclusion of Hank Williams Jr.'s iconic country ballad. Oh, and the security camera view.
Coke: Mean Joe Greene (1980)
This spot, which actually premiered during the Major League Baseball playoffs in 1979, won a Cannes Gold Lion for advertising excellence and has consistently been voted among the best Super Bowl commercials of all time. It also changed "Mean" Joe Greene's image. "I was suddenly approachable," Greene recalled recently. "Little kids were no longer afraid of me, and older people would come up and offer me a Coke."
Budweiser: Frogs (1995)
The commercial itself was simple enough: Three frogs in a swamp each croaking a syllable of the beer company's name. But the ad in many ways defined Super Bowl advertising in the 90s and became a cultural phenomenon.
Apple: Macintosh (1984)
Many still consider this not only the best Super Bowl commercial ever, but the best commercial ever, period. Directed by Ridley Scott, the spot aired only once, during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII, and is widely credited with helping make advertising during the big game must-see TV.
Monster: When I Grow Up (1999)
Monster.com's first Super Bowl ad paid off for the jobs website in a big way. Having small children recite such hackneyed business jargon as "I want to claw my way up to middle management" resonated in a big way with many viewers.
Budweiser: Welcome Home (2003)
With the memory of 9/11 still fresh in many people's minds, and with the US less than two months away from invading Iraq, Budweiser tugged at the heartstrings of many viewers with this memorable -- and wordless -- one-minute spot during Super Bowl XXXVII.
E-Trade: Talking Baby (2012)
This was the first commercial in the financial services company's famed "Talking Baby" franchise, featuring a toddler in front of a webcam discussing the particulars of online investing and stock trading in an adult voice -- usually with a deadpan delivery.
Doritos: Man's Best Friend (2012)
Doritos has aired its share of racy Super Bowl ads, but this one used a simple comic premise -- a Great Dane covering up evidence and using Doritos to quiet the sole witness to his crime -- to score big with viewers.
Dodge: Farmer (2013)
Dodge used radio broadcaster Paul Harvey's "God Made A Farmer" speech, together with compelling still images depicting farm life, to great effect in this two-minute spot that was shared nearly two million times via social media during and following the game.
- Nuts & Bolts
We're raising a generation of timid kids
A week ago, a woman was charged with leaving her child in the car while she went into a store. Her 11-year-old child. This week, a woman was arrested for allowing her 9-year-old daughter to go to the park alone. Which raises just one question: America, what the heck is wrong with you?
Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive
For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.
Afghanistan vet who ran to grenade gets Medal of Honor
A former Marine Corps corporal who was severely wounded when he risked his life to shield a squad mate from a grenade blast in Afghanistan was awarded the nation's highest military decoration Thursday.
May 2014 was the hottest may in recorded history
According to new data released this week, May 2014 is officially the warmest May in recorded history.
Both NASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency have tentatively ranked May at the top of historical measurements, though NASA's numbers are preliminary because crucial information is still missing from China.
Bet the farm: 5 'psychic' animals predict soccer victories
Need some guidance on whom to place your bets for this year's World Cup? Since Paul the Octopus achieved a prediction success rate of 85 percent in 2010, hosts of animal oracles around the world have sought attention as soccer sages. Here's a look at a few of them.
Is the FDA waging a war on artisanal cheese?
Is the Food and Drug Administration waging a war on artisanal cheese?
The answer depends on your perspective. But this much is certain: The agency's answer to New York regulators about using wooden boards to age cheese has caused an uproar in the domestic industry and raised questions about the status of imported cheeses that use the same process.
Texting while driving is latest teen risk as smoking declines
While smoking among American teens has fallen to a 22-year low, most adolescents admit to engaging in a new type of risky behavior: texting while driving.
No one is against devoted dads
Father's Day is Sunday, which means that it's time for pundits and politicians to scold the American public - with special ire reserved for black members of the American public - for our supposed indifference to the wonder and awe of fatherhood.
College World Series finally onto baseball-like scores
College baseball deadened its aluminum bats three years ago, deflating the game's offense and dialing back runaway scores. Fans who watch this year's College World Series may actually catch a shutout, or even a pitchers' duel.
Tough scrape: Inmate faces new charges after failed escape try
An inmate at a Georgia detention center could spend more time behind bars after officials said he tried to use a piece of metal to cut through his cell wall in an apparent escape attempt.
- More Nuts & Bolts Headlines
- We're raising a generation of timid kids