CarMax Returns to Super Bowl with '80s Cliches and Puppy Re-enactment

Funny People Alone Aren't Enough for Big Game Push

Published on Jan 22, 2014

Editor's Pick

An '80s film cliche gets new life in this year's Super Bowl spot from online auto retailer Car Max, created out of Silver + Partners and directed by Harold Einstein. The ad begins with a satisfied customer telling a CarMax agent how grateful he is for having started his auto search at the retailer. The agent responds by whipping out his hands and clapping--very, very slowly. Others around the neighborhood, from the quarterback and the cheerleader, to the mailman, to the pie-eating contest gorger -- follow suit. It's the sort of montage that you'd seen those uplifting athletic underdog films from the '80s like "Rudy," when the whole world bands together to support an unlikely hero. And, it turns out, Sean Astin, who played the title character in the flick, makes a clapping cameo in the spot as well.

But that's not all for CarMax. Picking up on another cliche, the advertiser turns to puppies for an online component, in which it recreates the entire film with dogs. The puppy version was directed by Ronnie Koff at

CarMax hasn't advertised in the Super Bowl since 2011, when it featured two spots, including this silly take on similes. Those ads were created out of Amalgamated, which later rebranded to become Silver + Partners.

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Jan 22, 2014
Silver & Partners
Chief Creative Officer:
Eric Silver
Creative Director:
Howard Finkelstein
Creative Director:
Casey Rand
Creative Director:
Jillian Dresser
Senior Producer:
Joel Jeffords
Production Company:
Station Film
Harold Einstein
Executive Producer:
Eric Liney
Mackenzie Cutler
Dave Anderson
Assistant Editor:
Mike Leuis
Evan Meeker
Tim Masick
Audio Post Company:
Sound Lounge
Tom Jucarone
Executive Producer:
Vicky Ferraro
Toria Sheffield
Butter Music and Sound
Andrew Sherman
Executive Producer:
Ian Jeffreys
Annick Mayer

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