With a Super Bowl that ended up being a blowout, fans were forced to take solace in the commercials that help make the game such a universally enjoyed event. Fortunately, there were quite a few memorable ones.
Many of the advertisements this year ditched the humor angle and instead looked to warm hearts. No one did a better job of that than Budweiser with this spot shown at the end of the game:
According to ESPN's Darren Rovell, this received plenty of critical acclaim:
Bud’s “Puppy Love” called best ad by AdWeek & USA Today. Whether it sells beer is another story.— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) February 3, 2014
Despite the different commercial styles, there were definitely some that caused almost anyone watching to laugh out loud. Here is a look at the funniest ads from Super Bowl XLVIII.
This was technically two commercials combined as Ford sent the message that it has "nearly double" the fuel economy of average cars. As a result, Rob Riggle started off with a typical, bland commercial that was followed up by James Franco basically repeating the dialogue in a better version.
The problem is that everything that took place in the second commercial was at least 10 times cooler than the one in the first, and Franco is probably 1,000 times the actor/entertainer/celebrity that Riggle is.
Still, the entire idea was original and it created an entertaining spot early in the game.
When you can successfully make fun of yourself and bring back an entire decade worth of awesome, you are doing something right.
RadioShack started things off by pointing out that the company has been a little behind the times. What followed was an explosion of references to the 1980s, from athletes like Mary Lou Retton and Hulk Hogan to television shows like Cheers and CHiPS, plus Kid 'n Play, Alf and much more.
If you lived through the 80's, you were able to get some nostalgia from the characters you loved. If you did not, you could simply sit back and laugh at some of the things that were actually popular.
Either way, it was a funny look at a company that is looking to get back into the spotlight.
3. Bud Light
This commercial was not only humorous, but it also created a lot of jealousy for most of those watching at home. Bud Light apparently took an unsuspecting person on the strangest night of his (and probably anyone's) life.
Ian met various celebrities and got to play a ping pong match against Arnold Schwarzenegger. Honestly, the "tiny tennis" battle alone would be worth the night for me.
Still, the advertisement kept you on your toes because most were simply wondering what could come next. The unpredictability was what made one of the funnier commercials of the night.
2. Wonderful Pistachios
Stephen Colbert has created a powerful persona for himself and he has reached the point where he is funny in almost everything he does. These two commercials were no different.
Wonderful Pistachios strategically placed two ads 30 seconds apart to highlight the effect of Colbert. In that time, the star goes from a toned-down endorser to a full-fledged nut (pun intended).
Although Colbert did nothing more than play the role he has perfected on The Colbert Report, he was highly entertaining in these two 15-second spots.
Audi created an entire new breed of dog for their commercial and called it a Doberhuahua, which is a combination of a Doberman and a Chihuahua. Obviously, this is not recommended in real life.
While the image of the canine alone was funny enough, other highlights include the announcers at the dog show as well as Sarah McLachlan on the couch trying to "help these misunderstood animals."
Even if you were not really paying attention during the game itself, it would be hard to miss this spot with some of the most bizarre creatures you will ever see. Viewing it again just makes it that much better as the funniest advertisement of the day.
Follow Rob Goldberg on Twitter for the latest breaking news and analysis.