8 Best Pepsi Commercials in Super Bowl History
There are a few brands you can all but guarantee on making a big splash on Super Bowl Sunday. They include Budweiser, McDonald's, Doritos, Ford, and, of course, Pepsi. In fact, according to the site Wizard Pins, Pepsi is just a few spots away from having aired 100 Super Bowl ads—which is stunning mainly because of the high cost of airtime during the Big Game.
What has Pepsi gotten for its $341 million dollars in Super Bowl ad spending? Billions upon billions of dollars in annual sales worldwide, that's what. Now, what have we the viewers gotten? A lot of commercial comedy gold. Because in its Big Game ads, Pepsi almost always goes for comedy.
And when PepsiCo isn't playing for laughs, it goes big. Some of the company's past Super Bowl commercials have featured the biggest stars in the world, and they have had production value matching a blockbuster Hollywood movie.
Here's a look at eight of the best Pepsi Super Bowl commercials of all time. Well, so far, anyway.
This classic 1990 Super Bowl ad played on the youthful appeal that Pepsi has long aimed for, but in this case, the young at heart turn out to be elderly retirees partying down after a shipment of Pepsi is accidentally delivered to their retirement community. They should have gotten Coke, which instead goes to a frat house where we see young men playing bingo and napping.
This 1992 Super Bowl ad may be the most famous and memorable Pepsi spot of all time. In the commercial, a couple of boys appear to be gawking at supermodel Cindy Crawford as she steps from a supercar, clad in not much apparel. Instead, the youngsters are ogling the Pepsi can she's holding, as it featured a recent redesign.
This 2009 Super Bowl ad for Pepsi Max is both funny and at the same time completely outdated. It features men experiencing an ever-worsening series of physical accidents after which they immediately say, "I'm good!" Which is funny. But then the ad positions Pepsi Max as "the first diet cola for men," after having said "men can take anything except the taste of diet cola." That part? Not so funny.
"The Joy of Pepsi"
This 2002 Super Bowl ad gives the Cindy Crawford spot a run for its money in terms of its fame and memorability. It features pop star Britney Spears at the height of her success, dancing and singing in sometimes suggestive ways while many a man look on—including, at the end of the spot, the late Bob Dole, who proved that he had a pretty good sense of humor with the cameo.
In one of the most lavishly produced Pepsi Super Bowl ads ever, Elton John holds sway over a court of richly attired nobles who scoff as performers perform in hopes of earning a Pepsi. None succeeds until Melanie Amaro's singing literally brings the house down, shattering a window and earning her a Pepsi. In a surprise twist, Sir Elton ends up falling into the dungeon where we meet Flavor Flav, because of course.
"This Is the Pepsi"
This minute-long spot, narrated by Jimmy Fallon, was a self-referential masterpiece that called out the long history of Pepsi in general and nodded to many of the brand's iconic Super Bowl commercials past. It referred to the Cindy Crawford spot, the Britney Spears spot, to Ray Charles, to classic movies, to Michael Jackson, and more.
"More Than OK"
2019's Pepsi Super Bowl commercial riffed on the classic Coke versus Pepsi standoff in the best way, using the humor of Steve Carrell, the catchphrase of Lil Jon, and the attitude of Cardi B. It's a simple idea that works based on the talent Pepsi enlisted to make the spot.
In 2021, Pepsi pulled out all the stops to make a Super Bowl spot that was both a Pepsi commercial and a promo for the upcoming Super Bowl Halftime Show which is, by the way, properly called the Pepsi Super Bowl [Insert Whatever Recent Big Game Number Here] Halftime Show. The spot featured Pepsi-loving people singing The Weekend's song "Blinding Light" before The Weeknd himself appeared, apparently on his way to the game.