Your company is embroiled in scandal, the stock price is down, and public opinion is turning against you. What do you do? If you're Uber, Budweiser, and Go Daddy then the answer is easy: make a Super Bowl ad with a puppy. Hey Martha, did you hear these guys hire rapists… OH MY GOD LOOK HOW CUTE!
An old Hollywood adage says "never work with children or animals." Cuba Gooding Jr. never recovered from Snow Dogs and Chris O’Donnell was exiled to television after playing the red-breasted sidekick to a bat. Will #brands fare differently?
Child labor laws restrict brands from employing babies for the purposes of gridiron combat, but dogs are still fair game. This year, Uber joins Animal Planet in support of its annual Super Bowl Sunday #UberPuppyBowl. The company everyone loves to hate but can’t live without will deploy "Team Ruff" and "Team Fluff" to your office in a fleet of black SUVs, whereby snuggle time will make you forget about all the company’s transgressions. Good girl, now go fetch the God View!
Budweiser, meanwhile, is hoping a bit of upbeat fluff will divert attention away from its rice-based recipe, perennial sales declines, and the fact that this Fuck Yeah! America! company is now owned by a company based in Belgium. The new, more sinister #BestBuds ad is a followup to last year's "Puppy Love" that explored the polyamorous relationship between a man, a dog, and a clydesdale. Watch as the hapless villain makes the classic mistake of monologuing well past the point he should have destroyed the pint-sized superhero. Who’s the king of beers, WHO'S THE KING!?
And finally, there’s GoDaddy, always GoDaddy. The company that once professed its love for SOPA and misogyny is now offending animal rights groups with this lampoon of last year's Budweiser ad. GoDaddy pulled the ad after the ASPCA called it inhumane. Get in the box buddy, YOU'RE SO SMART!
If nothing else, the rise of puppies as corporate pawns in $40 million ads is a positive sign for GIF lovin' dog fans. According to Google Trends, puppies are crushing kittens on the internet with more than twice as much interest in canines over their feline foes. Take that, cat.