The tired joke about the Super Bowl is that the commercials are better than the game.
But even those old “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” LifeCall ads were superior to what transpired in New Jersey.
Here’s a look at some of the winners and losers among the movie spots that aired during the 183 or so hours of coverage on Sunday.
Sadly, none of them were as jaw-droppingly awesome as the teaser for the return of Fox’s “24.”
What: “Muppets Most Wanted”
Initial reaction: Ricky Gervais as Dominic Badguy (“It’s pronounced Bad-Gee. It’s French.”)? Kermit calmly walking away while detonating an explosion on an airplane? Goofy twitter gags? You’d have to be Statler and Waldorf to find something wrong with that.
Initial reaction: All Seth MacFarlane and his filthy teddy bear Ted did was direct viewers to the Internet to see the “too hot for TV” spot for MacFarlane’s raunchy Western comedy. Rest assured, what they found online was better than anything those naked-Danica-Patrick-promising Go Daddy ads ever delivered.
Initial reaction: Parachuting robots? Robot dinosaurs? It’s amazing how much better “Transformers” movies look without Shia LaBeouf.
What: “Need for Speed”
Initial reaction: It was 30 seconds of nothing but engines revving, cars flying and shots of “Breaking Bad’s” Aaron Paul. But there are worse ways to spend your time than by watching what looked like a commercial for “The Fast and the Jesse Pinkman.”
Initial reaction: Wordless mayhem backed by a haunting rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner”? When can we buy tickets?
Initial reaction: All I remember is a bunch of flying metal and Samuel L. Jackson’s bad wig.
What: “Draft Day”
Initial reaction: That’s what I want in an NFL movie: countless shots of Kevin Costner talking on the phone.
Initial reaction: It looks like somebody made a YouTube mashup of “Volcano” and TV’s “Spartacus.” Or, with all those shots of fire and rain, an absurdly expensive video for a James Taylor song.
Initial reaction: Russell Crowe, a bunch of water and plenty of critters flying and slithering toward a really big boat. Why is this a movie again?
Initial reaction: The same amount of out-of-context mayhem as the “Captain America” ad, but with half the impact. Maybe it’s just that with The Green Goblin, The Rhino and Electro battling for screentime, too much really is too much.