If any brand needed a quick PR win going into last night’s Super Bowl, it was Tide. The cleaning product manufacturer has been making headlines recently thanks to a viral Internet meme called The Tide Pod Challenge. It’s an online fad whereby stupid people on the Internet upload videos of themselves eating Tide Pods – those detergent capsules you stick in the washing machine to wash your clothes. See below for an example of this web-based idiocy which can literally kill you.
Now, nobody is blaming Tide for the emergence of this potentially lethal competition. In fact, they’ve been very sensible and attempted to discourage people from doing it.
What should Tide PODs be used for? DOING LAUNDRY. Nothing else.
— Tide (@tide) January 12, 2018
But they really are in need of something equally WTF to change the conversation around their brand. That’s where the Super Bowl comes in.
It’s well known that TV ads during the NFL Championship game are viewed by a gazillion people, so naturally they’re in very high demand. And cost a lot more than the pitiful contents of your piggy bank.
Amazingly, Tide bought five of them. Like, do they even have that much money? How much can a laundry detergent company even make in a year?
On top of that, they booked one of pop culture’s biggest stars to act in them – Stranger Things‘ David Harbour. His faux-suave style was perfect for the concept, which parodied all other Super Bowl ads in history. Soothing luxury car promo? Check. Bubbly in-bar beer commercial? Check. Ultra-coiffed perfume puff-piece? You betcha. Watch them all below.
Predictably, the Internet went into overdrive. Eagles vs Patriots? More like Tide Ad vs Tide Ad. Here are some of the best and most over-the-top reactions (including one from Sheriff Hopper himself):
— David Harbour (@DavidKHarbour) February 5, 2018
— field cat (@HelenKellerBowl) February 5, 2018
— Betty White (@BettyMWhite) February 5, 2018
— Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) February 5, 2018
— Luke Croft (@LukePvA) February 5, 2018
— The Tenth Inning (@TenthInningBall) February 5, 2018
I hope this presidency is just a #TideAd
— stephen lundberg (@stephenlundberg) February 5, 2018