Nobody Puts OBJ in the Corner

The NFL may already be the center of focus during the Super Bowl, but that doesn’t stop them from joining the competition for the most memorable advertisement of the night.

If don’t watch the Giants play, you may be unaware that Odell Beckham Jr. has become fairly well-known for his touchdown celebrations. See the below highlight reel for reference:

In a commercial with the slogan “To All the Touchdown Celebrations to Come,”  Eli and Odell take on the epic 80’s classic Dirty Dancing. The two tackled the iconic choreography with near perfect accuracy. Although, admittedly, Odell’s moves are a little more polished than Eli’s, but that just adds to the charm of the ad.

The goal of the advertisement is to market for the upcoming season by highlighting the fact that, for most teams, the Super Bowl marks the beginning of a fresh start. For Eli and Odell, that means nailing the perfect touchdown celebration.

The ad is a mix of surprise, nostalgia, and humor, working in unison to secure its spot at the top of the numerous “Best Super Bowl Commercial” lists for weeks to come after the game–that’s free advertising. The cost to run an advertisement during the Super Bowl is worth it if the ad is successful. Not to mention the fact that several of the ads, including this one, go viral online before the game even airs.

How do you think they did?

-Katie Solinski

59 thoughts on “Nobody Puts OBJ in the Corner

  1. I think the NFL did a great job with this ad! It was certainly memorable, and for a lot of people, this was their favorite commercial. People love Dirty Dancing, so it makes sense that they would love this commercial unless they hate the Giants of course.

  2. This was easily my favorite Super Bowl ad this year! thing is, I’v never even seen Dirty Dancing, but it was my favorite because it completely messes with your expectations. these are football players. Big, strong dudes that are usually known for their stoic demeanor outside of touchdown celebrations. and the fact that they were totally down for this kind of silly thing is just the best. granted, they probably got a huge paycheck for it, but it is so much fun to watch! I mean, you cant go wrong with two lumbering men doing a choreographed number. you just cant. it worked well here, and it reminds me of a equally silly scene from another football-related event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAKOwWsu-nk

  3. I thought all of the ads were executed really well. I enjoyed how seamless they blended Dirty Dancing and the NFL commercial. Personally, I’d say that was one of the best ads this year. The ad did not seem forced and was able to get its’ message across with ease.

  4. This ad was a big hit in the Super Bowl this year. There was a lot of positive feedback and enjoyment from a mass of people watching around the world. I think this ad was very successful in achieving the desired title of “Best Super Bowl Commercial” and they did so by implementing humor and flashbacks to a classic movie Dirty Dancing. The NFL successfully promoted the upcoming season, and got people happy and excited while watching their advertisement.

  5. My mom and I are the opposite of football fanatics so we usually spend the Super Bowl with the game on mute, only turning the TV on when its time for the commercials. We love seeing what craziness advertisers come up with every year, but this year things were a little on the “meh” side if I’m being honest. Not too many of the ads left a good impression, but this one really hit it out of the park. Seeing NFL pros channel their inner dancing queens was by far my mom’s favorite part of the night. Dirty Dancing was her favorite movie in high school so she absolutely loved the play off of the iconic lift scene. Although, when I started to explain how advertisers went about creating something like that she wasn’t too attentive. My mom, like the majority of society, was just interested in the completed product and who can blame them. A year ago I was the same way, but being in IMC has taught me that the process of how it all is put together is pretty cool too.

  6. I loved this ad, it was my very favorite of all the great ads this year! Not only did the NFL do a great job commemorating the bond that has developed between Eli and OBJ, but it was also refreshing to not necessarily have a certain product shoved in your face. It seemed to me that the NFL was not really even advertising (a smart goal), they were just giving us something to laugh and talk about rather than sell us on the league, and this strategy could influence more people to have positive feelings for professional football.

  7. I think this ad did a great job in general. Many people told me that this commercial was their favorite during the Super Bowl this year too! I think it was able to reach a wide range of demographics. The older generation felt nostalgic because of the Dirty Dancing aspect, but I enjoyed it because I have seen the movie many times as well. It was not the type of ad I was expecting, and definitely caught me by surprise, but it made me laugh. The combination of nostalgia, humor, and surprise really helped it become a memorable ad.

    • I definitely agree that the makers of this ad did a great job in targeting a wide demographic. There are a few movies that I can think of off the top of my head that I would consider truly classic in the sense that pretty much everyone has seen them or at least knows the story, and Dirty Dancing is one of them, especially with its recent comeback in a live production. It was one of the most memorable ads, and one of the only ones I remember in full this far past the Super Bowl.

  8. I think this was the best Super Bowl commercial to be aired that night. It was hilarious take on how their touchdown dances that Beckham is known for. There weren’t that many commercials this year that really stuck out to me, but this one definitely caught my attention. It was a good play for the NFL to use the Dirty Dancing soundtrack in order to relate to its audience. My mom even called me to tell me they played that song and how she thought the commercial was cute.

  9. I would say that they did a pretty good job. This commercial definitely caught people’s eye and reached people who might not even watch the super bowl, but just want to see the commercial’s. I loved the reference to dirty dancing. It made the not so understood sport more relateable.

  10. This was by far my favorite Super Bowl commercial. Partially because I love Dirty Dancing. When I was growing up my mom and I loved watching it! Who doesn’t love Patrick right??!! Also, this commercial is spot on with showing that no matter how masculine and “tough guy” football players seem to be…. they all have a soft side big enough to make this commercial. I love the humor that it has!

  11. Great blog post Katie! This was my favorite Super Bowl commercial this year. It is just an all-around funny commercial. Also, the song Time of my Life make this commercial that much better.

  12. Considering the NFL is still penalizing players with rules in place for excessive celebrations, the NFL is giving conflicting messages about its own brand to get viewers excited for the upcoming season and have a memorable commercial. This ad while humorous and light-hearted may be giving players the wrong way of thinking about touchdown celebrations. Unless of course, they intend to lighten up on the rules even more than the 2016 editing. However, this ad does accomplish its job because it is all anyone is talking about after the Superbowl commercials aired and is well worth the money spent.

  13. I believe that the NFL was extremely creative in creating this ad for the Super Bowl. They used two well known players with very different personalities to get an idea across to their viewers. The NFL recently started to allow more creative touchdown celebrations and this ad just further pushes the point of the NFL trying to be more fun.

  14. OBJ has become one of the biggest faces in the NFL, so them using him in their advertisement was very smart. They were able to use a platform that they created, the super bowl, in order to promote their brand via a funny advertisement to fans who were tuning into the game maybe for the first time and show that the NFL has a lighter side.

  15. This commercial was hilarious, it was actually my favorite Super Bowl commercial. This review of the commercial was spot on. Firstly, I loved the title, “Nobody puts OBJ in the corner.” I also liked how you mentioned the goal of the advertisement was to market for the upcoming season, which for Eli and Odell, meant nailing the perfect touchdown celebration. For someone like me who does not watch football, this was interesting to read because I honestly did not know that Odell Beckham Jr. is known for his touchdown celebrations. By reading this post, I not only got to watch my favorite commercial again but I learned more about the two players in it, making it even more enjoyable to watch.

  16. I think this ad truly hit it out of the park. To take a movie as beloved as Dirty Dancing, and combine it with the humor of making fun of OBJ’s over-the-top touchdown celebrations appealed to such a broad audience. I do not watch football very often, though I do consider myself to be a Giants fan and have heard about OBJ’s celebrations. I am on the other hand a huge Dirty Dancing fan, so I think this ad did a great job of capturing attention in a humorous, relatable, and entertaining manner. I plan to try and watch the Giants more next season because of my newfound love for this iconic dance-duo.

  17. I think this is a very clever attempt at rebranding on the part of the New York Giants. They had an awful season in which their star wide receiver was out for the season, they benched a former super bowl MVP quarterback, and they fired their head coach mid season. By doing this super bowl ad the Giants are showing that this is not only a fresh start for all of the NFL teams, but for them as well. Showing a funny side in a commercial like this really generates a positive public perception and will help the Giants come back from a truly atrocious season.

  18. I really enjoyed the ad and thought it was well put together! This type of ad and success that has come from it, is something that they all strive for. People paying to have their ads shown, are wanting people to see their commercials and have it stick out to them. This was one of those commercials that grabbed the audiences attention through its humor and overall great idea.

  19. I loved this commercial, but it might just be because I am a huge dirty dancing fan, not so much an NFL fan. I liked your point that it is ” a mix of surprise, nostalgia, and humor, working in unison…” and it’s true, this commercial is the perfect mixture and is why it was such a huge success. There could have been a miss if they didn’t choose to stay true to the original “final dance” but because they were loyal to the original helped make this commercial memorable and one that everyone wanted to share.

  20. Cool post! I really enjoyed this commercial when I first saw it and instantly knew it was going to be a big hit. Hope Eli & Odell have a good 2018 season!

  21. I think the commercial does a great job at showing a softer more personal side of the athletes we normally view as tough and strong. I think that that contrast contributes to the humor of the thing as well. With a brand so popular as the NFL, it hard to measure its effectiveness. Im not sure if this commercial is going to directly raise viewer ship, but it definitely wont hurt!

  22. This was my most favorite commercial BY FAR! It was the funniest in my opinion and they did a great job by targeting two different types of Super Bowl viewers. One type being the sports fans who are aware of Odell Beckham Jr. and his famous touchdown celebrations and the other type being not-so sport fans, but huge fans of the movie Dirty Dancing. Such a classic!

  23. I do agree that all of the money spent on these advertisements is worth the huge amount spent on them, but if they go viral and contribute to their company. Although some ads are a bit much, I do think that the ones this year showcased in the super bowl did a very good job. They incorporated things within them that made you remember the commercial, and then in return makes you think about the company.

  24. I find it clever that they use the Dirty Dancing dance to form “nostalgia” in their viewers. Most of the NFL viewers being in the age range where the movie was widely successful, it is in the league’s best interest to use a movie that will make their viewers feel nostalgic by parodying the two and overall create a better reputation for NFL’s brand.

  25. Using two icons from the NY Giants like Eli and Odell was perfect replicating the dance, not to mention the comedic feel behind the dancing since everyone knows that it isn’t Eli’s forte but everyone knows about Beckham’s celebrations in the end zone. As for the perspective of this commercial, it’s as if they’re telling us to get ready for new celebrations once the season comes back. Overall, it was a great commercial to air during the Super Bowl.

  26. I think this post was pretty interesting. I thought Beckham was an interesting choice for an ad based on his personal life which seems to be all the media cares about. I think they used him for this ad because after he gets touchdowns he’s always dancing. I think they were using humor and poking fun at that fact by using him in this commercial, all while advertising their product.

  27. The “Touchdown Celebrations to Come” commercial was a great marketing strategy for the NFL. Firstly, the commercial featured two very popular NFL players, Odell and Eli, which was automatically going to attract audiences (and a lot of revenue). Secondly, what made it so memorable was its use of unpredictability. The video tricked the viewer into thinking that it was a normal NFL ad with workout drills; however, when the music started playing, you knew something hilarious was going to happen (and it was great). Overall, enough though talk about this commercial has gone down, it definitely made a lasting impression on those who watched it.

  28. I believe this commercial is brilliant because there is an appeal to multiple groups of people including Giants fans, football fans in general, and Dirty Dancing fans on top of being humorous about what they were doing. I agree with you that Eli’s unpolished chops added to the charm of the commercial, and I think part of what makes it so funny is that he simply can’t dance very well. I think the marketing team did a fantastic job because it’s now one of the most reviewed commercials of this year’s Super Bowl.

  29. The NFL has had an extremely rough year when it came to the media. With all the Black Lives Matter drama and players like Colin Kaepernick kneeling during anthems and wearing offensive gear directed towards police, the NFL actually had some of the lowest viewership in years. To combat this, the NFL tried a whole host of methods to boost viewership. From the players and coaches rocking military related uniforms to allowing celebrations to happen again. The latter seemed to be one of the most effective and was well received by fans all across the country. This ad further showcased the NFL’s effort to please viewers and was extremely well done.

  30. This ad was great for many reasons. First it focused on the appeal of the New York Giants. I dont think any other team would have been as funny. The giants didn’t have a great year but still have loyal fans. It’s also funny because they are breaking from their normal characters, football players usually dont break the stereotype of football players. That’s why it works, plus they got all the moves down pretty similar to the original movie. Being from New York I am a giants fan so this made me love them even more.

  31. I think the NFL did a great job with this advertisement. They took a timeless and classic piece and mixed it into a commercial to celebrate the upcoming NFL season. The relatability is really what brought so much humor to this piece for me, and I’m sure many more. I feel like this commercial sheds light on the more relaxed and friendly side of the game. We are used to seeing players in a serious manner. This advertisement makes them seem a little more “human” by letting the public see them in a playful setting. It’s nice to know that even the big time players still like to mess around every now at then.

  32. I love the use of NFL Football players to recreate a classic romantic film! Hilarious and adorable as well as creative. The players are relevant within society and it’s intresting to see their appearance in an older film that was also incredibly relevant within the time it was released. Love the layered effect!

  33. I think this was a great ad because it’s a very iconic scene in the movie that almost everyone remembers. I think they brought a lot of humor too commercial and that is what people want to see during the super bowl.

  34. I heard a lot of mixed responses about this ad, but personally I really enjoyed it. I think they did a great job in incorporating the nostalgia from the movie while keeping it realistic with the bad dancer, football players. Even if someone did not like the ad, they’re still going to be talking about it with other people. I think the ad got it’s point across and did it’s job well because even if people didn’t like it, they’re still talking about it and remembering the commercial. It got it’s message out about watching NFL, watching great players try to dance and remembering a great movie. I didn’t take the ad as a parody or anything towards the movie, I saw it as them appreciating it with their own “football” flair. I think people are just still mad with the NFL about the kneeling during the National Anthem controversy.

  35. I think OBJ and Manning did great! I read a few articles about that they it took this in only a few takes which is very surprising. I love that everyone is serious and no one breaks character. It gives a fun playful side to the industry that’s been a little under the spotlight.

  36. By far the funniest Super bowl commercial i felt this year. taking on the dirty dancing scene and putting football player who are notoriously “tough” people and making light of the brand. I felt it was very well done and they defiantly caught the audience attention with it using two very recognizable figures in the game today.

    (GO STEELERS)

  37. I really loved this Super Bowl commercial. It’s always entertaining to see professional athletes in a not so serious setting. It’s not only funny, but it also makes them easier to relate to. Professional sports is always so serious and it was a great idea to have the players doing something unusual for them.

  38. I think the NFL did a great job with this commercial! Not only did the commercial do its job at marketing for the upcoming season, but it also added humor by using Dirty Dancing.

  39. I am always a fan of commercial “puns” or plays on content that have already been created. I think this commercial was awesome! It reminds me of the car ad we looked at in class one time that mirrored “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”. I think that by brands associating themselves with something that people already have good memories of, it makes more appealing to the public. The use of this advertising tactic is very effective in my opinion.

  40. One of the greatest commercials of this past Super Bowl in my opinion, I really felt that the use of the song and its ties to people who are more my parents age would draw them in and capture their attention. Although that song is a timeless classic, it was fun to bond the rigid personalities of OBJ and Eli and blend them with a fun side to make the NFL seem like it is more about the athletes enjoyment and love for the game than just playing it to please others.

  41. This was my favorite ad of the whole entire Super Bowl. I also have never seen Odell’s touchdown dances so that was funny to see! I thought you got in trouble for celebratory dances in the NFL LOL? I think Odell and Manning did a great job at acting that scene out, as I am sure it is not easy!

  42. This comment is simply great, as it makes perfect use of metalanguage, history, and humor, after all, what can be better than a Superbowl ad that is funny and TALKS about the Superbowl. With the recreation of the Dirty Dancing’s song, Odell and Eli shone directly to the spotlight as most of the spectators got such reference and if not, they were still able to enjoy it, as they for sure all knew the famous players. This ad was beautifully created and had no changes of taking a wrong turn: simple, but extremely effective.

  43. This was one of the best Super Bowl ads of the year. The aspect of trying to nail a touchdown celebration is hilarious since that has been the whole goal of the NFL this past season. It is dumb to me that they do that, but they gain followers and fan base from their celebrations.This commercial is able to capture even more followers by using the scene from Dirty Dancing. This is recognizable to many people even those who weren’t tuned in to the game.

  44. I thought this commercial was hilarious and so well done. The NFL created an ad that was creative, memorable, and played on the pop culture and nostalgia of their viewers. The ad gave the players less of a “famous” image, and more or a playful, relatable one. I personally do not watch much football, but I know the quite well-known players and the Dirty Dancing reference, and still thought the ad was humorous and shared it with friends, which I think is exactly what the creators were aiming for.

  45. This Super Bowl ad definitely created the most buzz among the people I know that were watching the game. Using nostalgia from a classic movie scene and then modernizing it with these two great players was hilarious to watch, and I think this will be good luck for them next season. This is also one of the only ads I vividly remember due to the song and the concept of it, I don’t remember the Doritos ad or the Mountain Dew ad even though they produced a lot of hype as well, but this NFL ad has stuck with me and its great to watch it again.

  46. I pretty much only watch the Super bowl for the memes and commercials, so when the players get incorporated into them I feel more connected than I do by just watching the games. Incorporating the iconic final dance scene from Dirty Dancing (and doing the lift!!) was a great way to catch attention and reveal a more easygoing, fun image of the notoriously “tough” NFL.

  47. I don’t keep up with football, and I’ve never seen Dirty Dancing, but the movie is so culturally ingrained that I would have gotten the reference anyway. Even without knowing that Odell is known for touchdown celebrations, I thought the ad was cute and funny–the insider knowledge would have been an added bonus on an already entertaining, solid ad. Something about the idea of seeing football players doing an iconic dance number is, as you note, surprising and funny. Odell was cast in the role of Jennifer Gray, a typically effeminate role. A lot of the humor here comes from playing with gender roles.

  48. This had to be one of my favorite Super bowl commercials this year. Even though I am not a big fan of football, the way they incorporated dancing and comedy made it likable for every type of demographic. It made the brand more appealing because everyone could enjoy it, not just sports fans.

  49. I’ve always loved this commercial and thought that they do a great job at engaging and catching the attention of the public! The contrast between the older classic ‘Dirty Dancing’ paired with some of the toughest football plays is hilarious!

  50. I definitely think that this was one of the best advertisements of this year. The NFL did a great job grabbing the attention of viewers who’s may not be paying too much attention to the game itself. By using OBJ and Manning in the infamous Dirty Dancing scene, they connected with pretty much everyone. Football fans will be attracted because it features two very well known, talented players and people not typically as interested in the game, like most women, will be attracted to the dancing scene. Most people know what the scene is from but even those that did not, could still find humor in the idea of two big , masculine men doing this choreography.

  51. I actually thought they did a good job with the commercials. It is funny and light hearted and will probably stick with a lot of people. Because it was something from Dirty Dancing it would relate to other people and in that way you would remember it for longer without realizing that it was advertising.

  52. I think that the NFL did an awesome job with this ad. They brought in humor in order to get the audience’s attention. Even if you aren’t a football fan, most people have watched dirty dancing so they can relate to this commercial either way. The NFL got everyone talking about this commercial. It was definitely one of my favorites!

  53. I love how you picked this relation. This is one of the best commercials in my opinion. I find it to be extremely attention grabbing and almost relative to many different people rather than just people who love football. I think you did a great job on analyzing the two different clips. I really enjoyed reading this article!

  54. I thought this commercial was hilarious and I was actually not terribly surprised to see the NFL joining the Super Bowl ad campaigns. Even though the NFL is already the highlighted brand of the Super Bowl, its not surprising that they joined the commercials with this comical because it is yet another way to bring themselves into the spotlight.

  55. I personally thought Manning and OBJ did a overall good job. I liked the positive attitude yet its also serious! Good read!

  56. Props to both of these athletes showing a softer side of themselves that we never get to see. This commercial encompasses humor, nostalgia, and celebrity recognition. Many people regarded this to be the best super bowl commercial this year. The NFL makes is very popular today, but not the most well liked brand. From concussions to protests, they have their challenges. This commercial encourages its audience to remember their whole purpose of entertainment.

  57. I love the irony of using masculine NFL football players to portray a soft romantic love scene like this. Almost everyone can say they’ve seen Dirty Dancing, so it gives this classic scene a modern comical twist. With the content being so out of line for their character, this was a great way to catch an audience’s attention and keep them entertained in a short amount of time. Overall, this commercial was funny and one of my favorites from the Super Bowl.

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