Hamilton, NY - The results are in! As part of a national survey, and in connection with the Hamilton Area Community Coalition, Hamilton Central School 8th Graders participated in the Big Bowl Vote 2016, placing their votes for the best Super Bowl commercial of 2016. Students were polled on Monday following the Super Bowl, and asked to name one commercial as their favorite, then list as many advertised brands as they could remember. Special thanks is extended to HCS teacher, Joseph LePage, for organizing the project.
The survey was designed to raise awareness for the impact alcohol advertising has on young people today. Studies show that the more exposure a young person has to alcohol advertising, the higher the risk of underage drinking and experimentation. As we all know, the Super Bowl has become as much about the commercials as the game itself. And with a high percentage of those commercials being alcohol related, The Big Bowl Vote was created to measure the direct impact on our youth, and to remind parents to remain aware of the messaging bombarding their children and to be proactive in encouraging healthy life choices.
The results of the survey were entertaining! Participants showed that while HCS students recognized the absurdity of the “Monkey Puppy Baby”, they still found it weirdly appealing. The report also revealed that at least one father in Hamilton may be sabotaging his daughter’s dates with the help of Hyundai, according to a student reporting that the “First Dates with Hyundai” commercial was “funny and TRUE!” There is also suspicion of a Hamilton family secretly sporting ketchup costumes, with a participant reporting that the clip with the wiener dogs jumping into the arms of a group wearing ketchup bottle costumes “was adorable and reminded me of my family.” And while there was one voter in favor of the bridesmaid who can catch like Odell Beckham, Jr, it was the acrobatic Doritos ultrasound baby who stole the show as the overwhelmingly popular commercial of 2016!
On a sobering note, while the top brand remembered by students was Doritos, Budweiser was close on its heals as the second most recognized brand of the day, with Mt Dew and Heinz Ketchup tied at third. Though these results are on par with the national average, and don’t necessarily indicate an immediate problem, they should serve as a reminder to parents and the community of the enormous impact of advertising on our kids and our culture. Take a moment to talk with your teen today; these commercials provide a perfect non-threatening opportunity for a conversation about the perceptions of alcohol. For more information on talking to your kids about the dangers of underage drinking, visit: www.samhsa.gov/underagedrinking.