Economic woes don’t disappear from Super Bowl ads

By David Bauder

NEW YORK – Along with the usual punchlines, cartoonish violence and car chases, the real world of a depressed economy slipped into the showcase of Super Bowl commercials.

In a Bud Light commercial, employees sat around a conference table while their exasperated boss wondered what they could do to make their budget.

“We could cut back on marketing,” one person said.

“We could eliminate bonuses,” said another, a line more timely than even Anheuser-Busch could have foreseen.

“How about if we stop buying Bud Light for every meeting?” one employee wondered, an act of betrayal that got him tossed out the boardroom window.

Even before the kickoff, Daryn from Texas testified on-screen about how she’s trying to make ends meet: “If someone asks me how they can make money right now, I say do what I’m doing, sell Avon,” she said in touting the cosmetics company.

The talking babies hawking E-Trade Financial Corp. commiserated: “This economy has been a little rough, man.”

To be sure, most of the ads struck their usual comedic tone. There was a snow globe thrown to the crotch to sell Doritos, Danica Patrick taking her fifth shower of the day for Go Daddy Group Inc. and a hilarious Conan O’Brien piece about a cheesy commercial he thought was only going to be shown in Sweden.