No Super Bowl ad faces a tougher standard than Volkswagen, whose 2011 spot featuring a pee-wee Darth Vader and the Volkswagen Passat was one of the best commercials of the entire year. Here's this year's entry, featuring an obese dog, the 2012 VW Beetle and a twist ending.
We can thank/blame VW use of The Force for spawning this year's bacchanalia of car-related Super Bowl ad; nearly one-third of the commercial time during Sunday's game will be taken with pitches for new vehicles. Last year, even the less creative ads had a measurable impact on sales, and one -- Chrysler's "Imported From Detroit" -- became a tag line still repeated 12 months on.
This spot -- titled "The Dog Strikes Back" -- isn't as ingenious as last year's work from VW, but it works on its own terms as a canine episode of "The Biggest Loser," although the new Beetle has less screen time than any other player. VW even acknowledges it couldn't quite meet last year's standard in the ending; I won't spoil it, but with a mouth like that it's no wonder Cornelius Evazan has a death sentence in twelve systems.