Nickelodeon Thinks You’ll Pay $6 a Month for a Netflix for Preschoolers

Blue's Clues
Nick Jr. Blue's Clues

If you think your toddler needs more screen time—and if you somehow don't already have more than enough child-friendly streaming options—Nickelodeon has the product for you.

This week, Nickelodeon announced that it is launching a new app for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, available at Apple’s App Store starting March 5. The app will be a subscription video service called Noggin—the same name of the cable TV channel that was a predecessor of Nick Jr.—and it will offer as much ad-free viewing of “Blue’s Clues,” “Little Bear,” and other preschooler fare as your little one’s eyeballs can handle, at a price of $5.99 per month.

As Variety noted, “Nickelodeon continues to grapple with ratings declines at its traditional TV network, owing to viewers seeking video content on new kinds of screens.” In a recent week, Nickelodeon’s ratings among kids were down 35% compared to the same period a year ago. So you can’t blame the Viacom-owned network for trying to do something to boost its audience and revenues.

But who is going to pay $5.99 a month this service? Starting at just $2 more monthly, you can be a subscriber to Netflix, which has plenty of content for children of all ages—it’s even been adding reboots of kids’ shows like “Care Bears,” “Magic School Bus,” and “Inspector Gadget”—as well as movies and shows for adults. The vast majority of consumers who are intrigued with streaming already subscribe to one or more service, such as Netflix, Amazon Instant Video (free for Prime members), or Hulu Plus, all of which have sections full of kids’ content. There’s also plenty of free kid-friendly streaming video out there (PBS Kids, for example). Finally, if you have a pay TV subscription that includes Nickelodeon, as most packages do, you can download the Nick Jr. app for free and watch unlimited, ad-free full episodes of “Dora the Explorer,” “Bubble Guppies,” and such.

It’s unclear, then, why all that many families would need to pay another $6 a month for yet more preschooler streaming content.

If there’s a parallel in the industry, it’s CBS All-Access, the subscription streaming option that also charges $5.99 per month—and that many observers assume will fail. At least the CBS product is targeting adults, most obviously folks who are big fans of the network’s shows, such as “The Good Wife” and various versions of “CSI” and “NCIS,” as well as older programs like “Brady Bunch” and “Star Trek.”

CBS All-Access has some hope of attracting grownup subscribers who are picky about what they watch and who like CBS’s programming. But how many preschoolers do you know are picky about what they watch? Most of the kids we know are more than happy to be allowed to watch something—anything—on the iPad while their parents enjoy their meal at the restaurant.

TIME Television

Read What Amy Poehler Had to Say About the First Episode of Parks and Rec

Parks and Recreation - Season 6
Colleen Hayes/NBC Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope

The beloved show comes to an end on Feb. 24

The gang from Pawnee, Ind., will say goodbye on Tuesday night, in Parks and Recreation‘s series finale. In the course of the show’s six seasons, star Amy Poehler has turned Leslie Knope into one of her best-known characters — and along the way she’s rounded out her résumé with movies and award-show hosting. But when the show debuted back in April of 2009, Poehler was still known primarily for her time on Saturday Night Live.

So it’s no surprise that, given the opportunity to pose questions to Poehler on the occasion of Parks and Rec‘s premiere, TIME readers were more curious about the past — which celebrity was the most difficult to impersonate (Julia Roberts) and whether she thinks SNL should have term limits (no) — than the future. In fact, the only thing Poehler had to say about her new venture was that fans of another one of the era’s top comedies would probably find it funny:

Will fans of The Office like Parks and Recreation? —Ronny Thompson, BALTIMORE

Yes, they will, Ronny. Although the mockumentary style certainly did not start with the American version of The Office, that part will seem familiar. Other than that, it’s a whole new cast of characters and a completely different world. I’m a huge fan of The Office, so hopefully it’s as funny.

The lack of curiosity about the new show, however, did not dampen its success. By the end of 2009, Parks and Rec had made it onto TIME critic James Poniewozik’s list of the best shows of the year. “Leslie fights doggedly for a pet project (turning an abandoned pit into a park), battling red tape, an evil library department and her own overenthusiasm. This sly but optimistic civic satire may be the first distinctive comedy of the Obama era,” he wrote. And it turned out that Poehler had been prescient in her earlier interview: the show that tied with Parks for its spot on that top-ten list was, naturally, The Office.

Read the rest of the interview here, in the TIME Vault: 10 Questions for Amy Poehler

TIME Television

The True History Behind Downton Abbey’s Anti-Semitism Storyline

© Nick Briggs/Carnival Film and Television Limited 2014 for MASTERPIECE Atticus Aldridge and Lady Rose MacClare

“I am very alarmed by the rise of anti-Semitism in Europe," the show's creator tells TIME

Contains spoilers for the episode of Downton Abbey that aired in the U.S. on Feb. 22, 2015

The latest ritzy wedding on Downton Abbey was an unusual one—and not for reasons the show’s viewers are used to. There were none of the exhales of finally that came with Lady Mary and Matthew’s nuptials, and none of the raised eyebrows that accompanied Lady Sybil’s upstairs-downstairs marriage to Tom, the family’s chauffeur.

Lady Rose MacClare and Atticus Aldridge come from similar socioeconomic backgrounds but different religions—though they’ve changed their name and acquired a noble title, the Aldridges are Jewish—and neither family is thrilled about the engagement. In typical Downton fashion, when it comes to love there is, as the Dowager Countess puts it, always something: Despite the fact that Rose’s aunt Lady Grantham’s father was also Jewish, the match is still not fully accepted within the household. The show has a solid track record of incorporating real-life historical moments; the Aldridge family’s struggle to be accepted mirrors the experience that a wealthy Jewish-British family might have faced in the real 1920s, and the real Rothschild family gets a shout-out during the episode.

But, in this case, the true story behind the fiction doesn’t actually go back quite so far in time. Rather, for Julian Fellowes, the creator and sole writer of the Emmy-award winning show, the plot line is a familiar one.

“In my own youth I went out with a girl for some time from a very prominent, grand Jewish family,” Fellowes tells TIME. “And it was one of my only times when I have been considered ineligible and not a sort of desirable party.”

In the latest episode both families protest the wedding, with Atticus’s father Lord Sinderby calling Rose a shiksa—a derogatory Yiddish term meaning gentile woman—and Rose’s mother staging a scene that makes it look as though Atticus is cheating. Fellowes explains that he had wanted the show to have a romantic storyline in which the disapproval went both ways. The timing of this story airing in the U.S. amid a rise of anti-Semitism in Europe is simply coincidental. (Similarly coincidental was the tragic death of the Grantham family’s dog, who some theorized was killed off because she was named Isis; “[The connection with ISIS] never occurred to us until it appeared in the paper,” Fellowes says.)

Still, though the story was not planned in response to current events, Fellowes acknowledges that the issues raised by this particular Downton wedding aren’t a matter of history only. “The situation is not as simple as one had hoped and these emotions are still rampant,” he says. “All of this stuff is pretty fundamental and we are still looking for solutions to a lot of it. I think, at least I hope, it’s useful and helpful to be reminded that these divisions have had to be addressed and resolved since the beginning of history.”

Likewise, the characters’ fears of assimilation and anti-Semitism are worthy of empathy in any time period. “When [Lord Sinderby] explains why he doesn’t want to have non-Jewish grandchildren, you do—or I hope you do—slightly understand his point of view and you slightly sympathize,” Fellowes says.

This season, which has just one episode left for U.S. viewers, was the first to mention Hitler and the Nazis. In fact, “Nazi thugs” supposedly murdered Lady Edith’s now-deceased beau Michael Gregson. But, though the show is known for jumping ahead in time, Fellowes notes the show’s timeline won’t make it all the way to World War II, by which time George—Lady Mary’s son—would be old enough to fight on the front lines.

“George would have fought in that war because he was born in 1921, I think,” he says. “He would be called up by 1941 or 1942. We’d have to hope he’d get through it. Of course fewer people died in the Second World War [than the First] but people did die, and we have to just hope little George gets through.”

TIME Television

Watch the Trailer for Mad Men’s Final Season

Roger Sterling has killer sideburns

AMC released a trailer for the final seven episodes of Mad Men Thursday with the appropriate title, “The Party’s Over.”

While the teaser for part two of season seven doesn’t give a lot of hints as to what’s in store, we are certainly excited for Roger Sterling’s killer ’70s sideburns:

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 2.06.58 PM

And Megan’s belly chain:

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 2.01.29 PM

Mad Men will be back for its final run of episodes on AMC on Sunday, April 5.

TIME celebrities

Bill Cosby ‘Applauds’ Eddie Murphy For Not Playing Him on SNL Sketch

Actor accused of sexual assault "very appreciative" of Murphy's alleged refusal

Bill Cosby has publicly thanked Eddie Murphy for declining to play the comedian — who has been accused of sexual assault by more than 20 women — in Saturday Night Live’s 40th anniversary special this weekend.

Cosby’s spokesperson said he was “very appreciative of Eddie and I applaud his actions,” NBC reports.

Norm Macdonald tweeted that he had asked Murphy to play Cosby during a Celebrity Jeopardy sketch, but said Murphy refused:

Kenan Thompson played Cosby instead.

Read next: 5 Essential Moments from SNL‘s 40th Anniversary Special

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

TIME Know Right Now

Know Right Now: How Game of Thrones Will Diverge From the Books

"Everybody better be on their toes," George R.R. Martin says

George R.R. Martin warned Game of Thrones fans recently that characters who survived in the A Song of Ice and Fire book series that inspired the show might still die on TV. Watch the Know Right Now above to find out more, and read more here.


Dakota Johnson to Host Saturday Night Live on Feb. 28

Samir Hussein—WireImage

During Jerry Seinfeld’s “taking questions from the audience” bit in Saturday Night Live’s 40th annviersary show, Dakota Johnson revealed that she is the show’s next host. Johnson will helm the show Feb. 28.

Since he’s hosted before, Johnson asked Seinfeld to tell her what the process is like. Seinfeld’s advice: “Well, Dakota, hosting the show is thrilling, but when you host, you’re totally powerless—you’re told what to do, what to wear, you just have to submit.” She responded: “So great, it’s like a regular shoot.”

And there’s your Fifty Shades joke for the evening, folks.

This article originally appeared on

TIME Television

The Historical Truth Behind Thomas’ Tragic Revelation on Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey
Nick Briggs—Carnival Film & Television Ltd/PBS Robert James-Collier as Thomas (far left) on Downton Abbey

What happened to Thomas happened to lots of men

Contains spoilers for the episode of Downton Abbey that aired in the U.S. on Feb. 8, 2015

After several episodes that left viewers wondering what Thomas was up to behind closed doors and what was making him look so ashen, Downton Abbey answered the question in a way that may surprise modern audiences, though perhaps not so much given the character’s history. His trip to London earlier in the season had been to receive electrotherapy that would “make [him] more like other people” (to change his sexuality, that is) and he had given himself an abscess through follow-up injections with an unsterilized needle.

Though Dr. Clarkson’s and Baxter’s attitudes toward the discovery were perhaps a little blasé for historical accuracy — as Downton viewers and people who saw The Imitation Game know, there were criminal penalties for homosexuality in England at the time — the tragic history behind that kind of electrotherapy is very real.

In fact, fans of Masters of Sex may remember that the technique showed up last summer on the show as well. As we explained back then, electroconvulsive therapy wasn’t the most typical method used to “cure” homosexuality, but it did happen, along with shock-based aversion therapy. And it wasn’t even all that historical — it happened to Thomas in 1924, it happened on MoS in the ’60s and it didn’t stop then.

It was as recently as Feb. 12, 1965, that TIME ran a story with the declarative headline “Homosexuals Can Be Cured“: “One reason why homosexuals are so rarely cured is that they rarely try treatment,” the story began. “Too many of them actually believe that they are happy and satisfied the way they are.”

TIME Television

This Is the Nudist Colony That Got a Downton Shout-Out

Downton Abbey Season 5 on MASTERPIECE on PBSPart FiveSunday, February 1, 2015 at 9pm ETRose makes a handsome new acquaintance. Something is wrong with Thomas. Edith’s link toMarigold draws attention. Bricker and Robert lose control.Shown from left to right: Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary and Hugh Bonneville as Lord Grantham(C) Nick Briggs/Carnival Films 2014 for MASTERPIECEThis image may be used only in the direct promotion of MASTERPIECE CLASSIC. No other rights are granted. All rights are reserved. Editorial use only. USE ON THIRD PARTY SITES SUCH AS FACEBOOK AND TWITTER IS NOT ALLOWED.
Nick Briggs—Carnival Film & Television Ltd/PBS Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary and Hugh Bonneville as Lord Grantham

The Moonella Group was a real thing

It’s such a brief aside that Downton Abbey viewers might even not notice it — except that the subject matter is so out of character for the show. Yes, in the episode that aired Feb. 1 in the U.S., a nudist colony is the subject of conversation.

The Essex-based colony, known as the Moonella Group was — as we’ve come to expect from Downton — an actual thing. As The Telegraph explained in a 2006 look at the history of naked Britons, the Moonella Group was the first club to bring nudism (also known as naturism) over to the U.K. from the Continent, which it did in the years following World War I.

The modern British Naturism organization elaborates in its own history of the movement, Moonella was the code-name of the club member who owned the property where the camp was established. He or she invited some elite members of the New Gymnosophy Society to use the groups for their naturist needs, as long as they followed certain rules of decorum.

According to British Naturism, the original Moonella Group site only lasted a year or so. But, as TIME reported in July of 1929, nudism wasn’t going away any time soon — even if it faded from the public eye for a while:

Made in Germany, imported to France, is the cult of Nudism, a mulligan stew of vegetarianism, physical culture and pagan worship. The outstanding feature is that all devotees must live in a state of complete spectacular nudity. Much publicity has been given the Nudist colony on an island in the Seine near Paris. Lively have been their arguments, moral, economic, religious, with Prefect of Police Jean Chiappe over the matter of bathing trunks. Some weeks ago a young French reporter paid a secret visit to the Nudist colony. So depressing, so disillusioning was his published account of the flabby spectacle that the romantic French press and public lost interest in the entire business.

Read a 2003 story about modern nudists, here in the TIME Vault: Nude Family Values

TIME Advertising

The Best and Worst Super Bowl Ads of 2015

TIME grades all the ads of Super Bowl XLIX

  • Toyota

    Toyota pays tribute to Paralympian snowboarder and Dancing with the Stars competitor Amy Purdy crosscuts intensely between Purdy’s boarding and ballroom dancing with a classic Muhammad Ali rhyming boast. She’s cool. Ali’s cool. But making the eternally sensible Camry seem “bold” is beyond Ali and Purdy’s powers combined. Awesome ad for snowboards and prostheses, though!

    Grade: C

  • TurboTax

    The tax-preparation giant builds a dramatic re-creation of the Boston Tea Party, then suggests that all it would have taken to end the American Revolution would have been for the Redcoats to offer free tax filing. Bit of a flat punchline, topped by the suggestion–in a game involving the Patriots–that the Founding Fathers could have been bought off cheap? As the ad’s refrain says, “All right then!”

    Grade: C-

  • Game of War: Fire Age

    A warrior princess rises from a bath and dons strategically bust-baring armor to ride off against her enemies. Doesn’t look like anyone was out to overturn anyone’s ideas about how women are portrayed in video games, but–truth in advertising, I guess.

    Grade: D-

  • Tomorrowland

    Disney’s been showing trailers for this George Clooney futuristic adventure for a while now, but this quick, visually enchanting cutdown is at least enough to make you wish for tomorrow to come a little faster.

    Grade: B-

  • BMW

    Katie Couric and Bryant Gumbel prove good sports by journeying back to 1994, when e-mail addresses were still news and the pair still hosted a morning show on the television machine. (“What is Internet?” Gumbel wonders on air. “Do you write to it, like mail?”) Cut to 2015–when Couric does the news on Yahoo–and the two are tooling around in an electric car made in a wind-powered factory. Message: the I3 is the future–so points off for ending on a twerking joke, which expired sometime in 2013.

    Grade: C

  • Minions

    First wardrobe malfunction of the game comes well before the halftime show, as the fun-sized Despicable Me sidekicks tout their sequel. Bonus points for theming an ad around the game rather than going with a movie-trailer cutdown, and as always, the guys are little yellow pills.

    Grade: B

  • Snickers

    Like a layer of rich caramel, the “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry” campaign gets chewed over and over without losing its flavor. In possibly the most bizarre and funniest take yet, Danny Trejo plays an axe-wielding Marcia and Steve Buscemi a pouty Jan in a surreal episode of The Brady Bunch. A couple Super Bowls from now, the Snickers ad will just be an extended version of “Too Many Cooks,” and I’m fine with that.

    Grade: A-

  • Budweiser

    Have a soul? This ad is for you. “Lost Dog” is about an 11-week old golden lab puppy who accidentally gets separated from his Clydesdale best friend. The emotional rollercoaster of an ad is essentially Homeward Bound condensed into a 60-second spot.

    Grade: A

  • Nationwide

    Inattentive insurance providers have apparently made Mindy Kaling feel invisible. So takes advantage by eating ice cream right out of the frozen food aisle, walking through a car wash (sans vehicle), and nuzzling up to Matt Damon in a restaurant. The ad trades on Kaling’s charm but undercuts its central point (insurance is a good thing?).

    Grade: B+

  • Coca-Cola

    It’s the good kind of hack. When Coke spills in a data center, it sends a message of hope and anti-bullying around the world.

    Grade: A

  • Avocados from Mexico

    It’s hard to know what exactly is going on in this ad starring: a caveman, two sportscasters, high fiving koalas and kangaroos, a fainting Dodo Bird, a polar bear in a sombrero, and… an avocado. Too much. Too confusing. But the sloth was kind of cute?

    Grade: C

  • Dove Men

    Dove compiled a series of home videos (or clips which look like home video) of children calling out for “Dad” in all the word’s permutations. It’s an almost perfect, emotional tour de force—aside from the pitch for the product with its AM-radio-esque announcer which seems beside the point.

    Grade: A

  • Doritos

    This spot stars a bro on an airplane playing the recorder, clipping his toenails, hacking up mucus, and doing other gross stuff to prevent people from taking the free seat next to him. Until, that is, an attractive woman appears. He pulls out a bag of Doritos to lure her just as—womp, womp—it turns out she has a baby in her arms. Bummer, brah! The joke doesn’t land. Probably because it’s not funny.

    Grade: F

  • Nissan

    Super Bowl 2015 appears to be the the year of the dadvertising. Nissan’s 90-second ad is the Boyhood of spots, following a family over the course of a boy’s childhood as he watches his Dad compete on the NASCAR circuit. The cinematography is good, it’s pretty heartwarming, but the story-telling is only so-so.

    Grade: B+

  • Nationwide

    Remember all the adorable father-son bonding? Nationwide’s “Boy Can’t Grow” ad might ruin all your warm and fuzzies. A little boy tells Super Bowl viewers that he’ll never get the cooties, get married or travel the world with his best friend—because he died from a preventable accident. Wrenching.

    Grade: B

  • Weight Watchers

    For starters, some food porn. Pizza as far as the eye can see. Onion rings raining from above. Crème burlee cracking. Steak sizzling. And then—an empty plate with the text “It’s Time To Take Back Control.” Weight watchers is here to tackle this nightmare (though it looked pretty delicious) and help regulate your eating habits.

    Grade: B+

  • WeartherTech

    This ad looks very cool and high tech. There are lasers and industriald machinery and American workers wearing protective goggles. Making car mats never looked so…inspiring.

    Grade: B

  • McDonald’s

    McDonald’s has incredible news for America: It will now accept hugs as payment for Chicken McNuggets. The Pay with Lovin’ campaign lets select customers use “Lovin'” as currency. This includes compliments, silly dances, and calling your mom just to say “I love you.” It’s sweet.

    Grade: A-

  • Esurance

    Esurance’s Breaking Bad-themed ad doesn’t quite land the way it would if the show was still on. Despite Bryan Cranston’s pitch-perfect performance, this one doesn’t feel very relevant.

    Grade: C

  • Fiat

    Fiat’s “The Pill” spot trades on old cliches: Italians are randy—even if they need Viagra. The new Italian-made vehicle looks great. This ad on the other hand…

    Grade: C-

  • GoDaddy

    GoDaddy’s paean to the hard-working small business owner who isn’t at your Super Bowl Party right now has a few funny lines but is mostly tinny and uninteresting.

    Grade: D

  • Discover Card

    Discover’s ad is one of the—thankfully—few spots trading on Internet memes this year. Needless to say, the surprise isn’t worth ruining because it’s not very original or funny.

    Grade: D

  • Microsoft

    Microsoft’s “empowering” commercial tells the story of a little boy who hasn’t let the fact that he has two prosthetic legs hold him back. With the help of Microsoft-powered technology, Braylon runs relay races, plays tennis and…warms your heart.

    Grade: A

  • Squarespace

    This may be the only Super Bowl ad that wants to put viewers to sleep. For 30-seconds, we were treated to Jeff “The Dude” Bridges making the lulling sounds of a didgeridoo next to a couple that’s fast asleep in bed. As much as the Dude abides, this ad didn’t quite get the job done.

    Grade: C

  • Toyota

    Another Dad ad. This one isn’t quite as successful as Dove’s but, by the end of the spot, it’ll likely have gotten you there. If by “there,” you mean teary and emotional.

    Grade: A-

  • Sketchers

    If seeing Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliot in a halftime performance in 2015 wasn’t retro enough, this Pete Rose ad certainly did the trick. Rose, who was infamously banned from baseball for betting on games, appears surrounded by memorabilia in what looks like it could be the baseball hall of fame.

    But nope, Pete’s not in Cooperstown, he’s just lounging in his own house’s hallway and marveling at the comfort of his Skechers. It’s a decent idea, but Rose’s wooden delivery, the bland background music and a too-on-the-nose reference to his past transgressions at the end of the ad make this spot a clunker.

    Grade: D

  • Always

    Taking a page from Dove’s successful ad campaigns centered on female empowerment, Always offers a clever one-minute spot that deconstructs the common playground insult that someone throws “like a girl.” In the ad we see actual girls throwing, running and fighting with all their might. The resonant message and the cuteness factor combine to make a memorable ad that would make Mo’ne Davis proud.

    Grade: A

  • Clash of Clans

    You know mobile gaming has hit the big-time when one if its biggest titles gets a Super Bowl ad.

    This spot for Clash of Clans starts off predictably enough, but it takes a turn for the bizarre (in the best possible way) when it’s revealed that Liam Neeson (aka “AngryNeeson52”) is playing the game in a coffee shop — and he’s ready to go on a Taken-style warpath to get revenge on those who would dare cross him. It’s Neeson’s icy delivery that really sells the spot, and the clueless barista at the end who mispronounces his name (LIE-am) only adds to the hilarity. Well played.

    Grade: A

  • Sprint

    Sprint takes a page from T-Mobile’s book by calling out competitors Verizon and AT&T by name. The script for this ad is actually rather vulgar, but the curse words dissing the country’s largest wireless carriers are replaced with a bleating goat and a surly-looking donkey. The ad is pretty unexciting overall, and loses points because no one actually wants to hear a goat screaming when they’ve got their TV volume turned way up to watch football.

    Grade: C-

  • Lexus

    Lexus gives a slightly different spin to the typical car ad by using a miniature model of its RC 350 line to show off the vehicle’s slick handling capabilities. The premise is fun and the tiny car definitely could have earned a spot in Tokyo Drift, but we kind of wish the tricks were even more outlandish. How about leaping over a two-foot chasm or something next time?

    Grade: C+

  • Dodge

    Dodge resurfaced its successful 2014 campaign featuring centenarians offering life advice to all us young whippersnappers who weren’t alive for the 20s and 30s. The ad is a clever way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the car company, and presents a set of people that are rarely used to market things that aren’t specifically aimed at the elderly. What’s not to love about hearing a 100-year-old dude yell “Don’t bit*h!” right after he mean-mugs the camera from the driver’s seat of his ride?

    Grade: A

  • Jublia

    I’ll admit that Jublia was facing an uphill battle from the get-go when they decided to try to advertise a medicine for toenail fungus during the Super Bowl. But was an animated, rancid foot dressed as a football player really the best thing they could dream up? The saddest part is the ad’s not even supposed to be a gross-out spot that shocks people into remembering it. This company appears to believe a fungus-ridden toe with a helmet covering its browned toenail is cute.

    Grade: D-

  • Jeep

    This is a bit too solemn and serious — not to mention pretentious — for a car commercial, but it does show some gorgeous parts of the United States, reminding us that the country is beautiful, or whatever. Sadly, many of these remote locations are simply not accessible for the everyday Jeep driver.

    Grade: B-

  • Mophie

    Think of all the scenes from every disaster movie you’ve ever seen and make them all weirder. Then, throw in a dog walking a human on a leash and edit everything together a little too fast, and you have this spot for Mophie. It’s a bit dark for a Super Bowl commercial, but it does capture the inner turmoil you face when your phone battery is nearly depleted. The ad would be better if it had explicitly revealed what Mophie is, and, more importantly, if it had featured Morgan Freeman as God.


Grade: B-

  • Loctite

    This ad draws you in immediately, bringing to mind questions like “What the hell is happening?” and “Why do they all have fanny packs?” Soon, you realize they have fanny packs because they’re filled with Loctite glue, which is what this very funny 30-second spot is selling. But it’s also selling joy and great dance moves and the perfect solution to your marriage.

    Grade: A

  • Mercedes

    Props to Mercedes for attempting something whimsical and cute as opposed to austere and chic, but it seems they’re trying just a little too hard to appeal to the youths here. Group selfies? Trash-talking tortoises? Sweet jumps? Bro voices? Sorry, but hip youths simply cannot afford the vehicle being advertised here.

    Grade: C

  • Bud Light

    This ad starts off with too much idle chatter between a bro and his buds, but eventually gets to the point, and that point is: real-life Pac-Man looks super fun. This might not make you want to drink a Bud Light, necessarily, but it will definitely want to make you run around like a human Pac-Man at a sweet rave.

    Grade: B

  • Doritos

    This ad stars a modern-day Jonathan Lipnicki as a kid who will go to great lengths to eat some Doritos. You’ve really got to admire his inventiveness, engineering prowess and his commitment to keeping animals safe and happy, even when he’s using them in somewhat dangerous schemes. But perhaps the best part of this commercial is that a selfish farmer who won’t share with children gets his comeuppance.

    Grade: B+

    Read next: Enjoy These Super Bowl Ads, For Tomorrow You Shall Die

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