The game was marred by a 31-minute delay due to a stadium blackout that may have lost some second half viewership.
In a statement, CBS said no advertiser lost air time due to the power outage and that "all commercial commitments during the broadcast are being honored."
For the first time in years, the Super Bowl took place at a time of relative national calm, unlike the air of uncertainty during last year's game, when America stood at an economic and political crossroads.
So, with a decent chunk of the American public feeling a bit better, many other Super Bowl advertisers figured it was time to let loose. Many commercials were overflowing with spectacle, scantily-clothed bodies and visual and audio pyrotechnics. This must be what viewers really want, right?
Wrong, according to Ad Meter's panelists. Turns out what they really wanted weren't ads that went whiz, bang and pop. They favored ads that told a simple story with a wisp of wonder. Folks wanted ads that made them feel good.
"It's almost unfathomable to believe corporate sponsors paid millions of dollars to create those overall woeful ads, and then, paid even further millions to show those ads during the Super Bowl," says Kitty Grubb, an attorney from Seminole, Fla.
But viewers loved the ads about heart-felt reunions. For A-B, man and horse. For Chrysler, soldier and family.
Chrysler's high-scoring ad positions it not only as a marketer whose messages must be watched, but as one whose designs and sheet metal for historic brands like Jeep and Ram trucks may suddenly be worth a second look.
"This is the kind of ad that America needs to see . . . hope, love, faith, patriotism . . . all of the things that America is desperately looking for . . . and needs," says Frank Slezak, a fashion photographer from Horsham, Pa.
Doritos, meanwhile, finished fourth with an ad about a father whose daughter talks him into prancing around in a tutu for a bag of Doritos).
For the eighth consecutive year, Doritos turned to consumers to create and select its Super Bowl spots. It has fully embraced social media and crowd sourcing, asking consumers to not only create its Super Bowl commercials but also select, via online voting, the ads that will air.
Other Super Bowl ad trends on Sunday:
Social chit-chat. A common thread for many top-scoring ads: They'd been viewed on YouTube and talked about on Facebook and Twitter for days. Increasingly, advertisers are embracing a new social media platform that demands advertisers give the goods early - well before the game - so that millions of folks can see them long before the clutter and confusion of The Big Game.
Ads go long. Who'd a thunk, in an age of instant gratification, that two advertisers would choose to air three Super Bowl spots that are each two-minutes long? Chrysler did it twice. And Samsung jumped on the train, with a spot featuring three actors in search of the next big thing - who happens to be LeBron James. (Isn't he already a big thing?)
Presto chango. The magic of magic never fails to allure. Toyota featured Big Bang star Kaley Cuoco as a wish-granting genie. Bud Light featured Stevie Wonder as a voodoo kingpin who rabid football fans seek out in New Orleans.
Sex with a twist. Sexy babes sipping soda or ogling guys just don't have the Super Bowl thrill any longer. Perhaps that's why GoDaddy put super model and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue cover girl Bar Refaeli into a 30-second ad in which she French-kisses a be-spectacled, chubby geek for a full 18-seconds. The close-up smackeroo was an utter turn-off for many viewers.
"If it wasn't a Super Bowl commercial, I would have turned the channel." says Jamie Thomassen, a public relations executive from Des Moines, Iowa.
(c) Copyright 2013 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc.
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