While most other automakers advertising in Super Bowl XLVII showed sneak previews and even full-length versions of its ads on YouTube, Chrysler stayed tight-lipped about its plans, only confirming that it had purchased advertising during the Super Bowl. After all the anticipation, we finally see the spots on live TV. This year, the spotlight is on the Jeep and Ram brands.
The Jeep spot starts with a dark screen and an orchestral score, and a fade-in of the words "We wait. We hope. We pray. Until you're home again," attributed to Oprah. The ad continues with scenes and narrations of familiar, homey and comforting situations, like home-cooked meals, bathing children, and dogs awaiting a walk.
It goes on, "You've been missed, you've been needed. You've been cried for, prayed for. You've been the reason we press on." The ending line is: "When you're home, we're more than a family. We are a nation, that is whole again."
At the end of an ad, the URL of a mini-site for Jeep's Operation S.A.F.E. Return initiative is put on-screen. The project, done in conjunction with the United Services Organization (USO) is a fund providing financial, in-kind and hands-on support for returning troops. Jeep's direct support of the initiative includes the provision of Jeep vehicles at USO centers, a military incentive toward the purchase of a Jeep vehicle, homecoming celebrations and other activities, and financial support of the USO for care of injured troops, families and caregivers.
The ad was in stark contrast to the more humorous, light-hearted fare that characterized most of the other car commercials. While a moving tribute to our nation's troops, and a feel-good patriotic spot, we're not sure if it's going to have the impact of the 2011 "Born of Fire" ad showing a battered Detroit and starring Eminem and a Chrysler 200.
Later in the game, another ad aired for the Ram brand, paying tribute to America's farmers using a speech from the late Paul Harvey, and a slide show of dramatic photos of farmers and agricultural scenes. This spot highlighted the Ram brand's support of the National FFA Organization (formerly Future Farmers of America). Of the two, we think the "Farmer" spot is more impactful. Will either have the staying power of the 2011 Born of Fire spot?