Armchair athletes may have gathered around the watercooler after last year's Super Bowl to gab about Tom Petty's halftime show or Justin Timberlake's Pepsi commercial. But sadly, there was one Super Bowl-affiliated advert artist that most viewers probably overlooked: The Eels.
Yes, lost in the shuffle amid all the megamillion-dollar commercials and A-list performers was Mark E. Everett's acclaimed indie band and their lo-fi commercial for their rarities compilation, Useless Trinkets.
It's understandable why most people wouldn't be able to remember the Eels' ad, since it was in fact only one second long--the shortest commercial in Super Bowl broadcast history. (See, Super Bowl commercials don't come cheap--they cost $100,000 a second. Indie bands can't afford that! So the Eels simply scraped together the minimum $100K and bought their own little blip on the Super Bowl screen.)
But in fact, the Eels' ad never ran at all, as it was yanked from the air at the last moment. "In the end we were told that the NFL would have to find 29 other advertisers to buy one-second spots to fill a standard 30-second advertising slot and that they do not sell advertising time by the second," Eels frontman Mark Oliver "E" Everett lamented to Exclaim News.
Still, it was true subliminal marketing genius...so much so that Miller Beer is now launching a similar campaign for this year's Super Bowl. And how you wanna bet the NFL will let Miller's commercial run as planned? But don't forget, the Eels thought of it first.
If you missed the Eels' viral commercial--and let's face it, who didn't?--here it is, in all its blurry glory. Now watch closely, everyone: