Two rec hockey teams in Port Credit, Ont., are all set to lace ’em up for another Thursday night game when—BOOM!—all of a sudden the empty stands fill up with cheering fans, mascots, TV announcers and everything else that could make these weeknight warriors feel like NHL stars. Seriously, if you don’t feel anything watching that guy sitting on the ice at the end, you’re dead inside.
The whole thing is an elaborate, documentary-style ad for Budweiser, set to air in Canada during the Super Bowl. It was just released on Feb. 2 and already there are plenty of questions. Did they rip off the idea? Is it the best Super Bowl spot yet?
But another question the Canadian ad industry and beer brands should be asking themselves is why it took an American agency, New York-based Anomaly, and an American beer brand to make the best Canadian beer ad in recent memory? (And yes, I realize Anomaly is technically owned by Toronto-based MDC Partners but that doesn’t count.) It’s not that bragging about our natural resources or being at the eye of the flavour storm is a bad thing, and Leo Burnett Canada has been killing it with non-TV James Ready work, but this spot should put Canadian beer advertisers on notice.