Doritos and Pepsi

Every year there is one day when the biggest companies strut their stuff in the form of commercials. Also there is a football game, but no one cares about that. This day, of course, is Super Bowl Sunday. The only thing the people want to see this day are commercials that will make them laugh so hard they pee themselves. This year there were two advertisements that stood out to us. The first one is for Pepsi Max where it looks into the thoughts of a couple on their first date. The second ad is for Doritos and shows a man’s attempt to use Doritos to fix his friends house after doing a bad job house sitting. These advertisements have very similar styles. Both of them feature user-generated content, and they also use humor to sell their product. However, they do have a big difference in the way the products are used.

Overview of House Sitting Commercial

In this hilarious Doritos commercial, it starts with two friends, one leaving town for a few days and the other is house sitting. Before he leaves he reminds his friend to feed the fish and water the plant. The week goes by and we see that the friend completely forgot about feeding the fish and water the plant. Both the fish and the plant have died and in an attempt to bring them both back to life, the feed sprinkles Doritos crumbs in the fish tank and in the flower pot. Amazingly, after being feed Doritos both the fish and the plant are alive again. While in a rush to clean up his mess the friend knocks over his friends’ urn with his grandfather's remains. It does not show him sprinkling crumbs over the ashes but it is assumed he has from the appearance of his friend’s grandfather sitting on the couch.

Overview of First Date Commercial

The Pepsi commercial opens with a couple on a first date. In an overdub, you can hear the woman wondering about whether the man she’s dating is good with kids, a good husband, etc. Then when it shows the man’s thoughts, all he thinks about is his desire to sleep with her until her Pepsi Max comes then he changes his thoughts to wanting her Pepsi Max. In the end she uses telepathy to tell him “No Way” and the man questions as to which desire she was referring to.

User-generated Content

The Doritos commercial "House Sitting" and Pepsi's "First Date" are both user-generated content through the Crash the Super Bowl campaign. User-generated content “best known for fueling the popularity of Web sites like YouTube and MySpace, is rapidly taking hold in advertising” (Bosman, 2011). Crash the Super Bowl is the perfect example of user-generated content. User-generated content – often referred to as UGC – in relation to advertising, basically allows consumers to generate home-produced commercials (Dominick, 2011, p. 349). The use of UGC in advertising is also the best method for covering what its targeted audience cares about.


One prevalent feature in these two commercials is humor. The main method to advertise their products is to make you laugh. In a an article Gail Tom, she states that “humor has been credited with calling attention to an advertisement, increasing comprehension of the ad, contributing to the positive attitude toward the ad and enhancing the positive attitude toward the advertised product.” (Tom, 2001) This shows that companies like to try to use humor in their advertisements as much as possible to sell their product. And Doritos and Pepsi are no different. Both of the ads have very humorous moments in them. Whether it be the man repeating, “I wanna sleep with her, I wanna sleep with her” in the Pepsi commercial, or the house sitter magically fixing everything with Doritos, humor in these commercials really grabs your attention. By choosing to do this, they appeal to their targeted audience and gives the companies a good image.

Compare and Contrast

Both commercials were produced by consumers and won the opportunity to have their ad aired during the Super Bowl. They are both humorous and did a great job at grabbing their audience’s attention. However, the difference between them is the placement of the product. In the Doritos commercial the product is immediately displayed, letting viewers know what product is being advertised. When we compare the Doritos commercial to the Pepsi commercial we never see the product until the end of the commercial. Although the Pepsi commercial was humorous, from consumers stand point, it may have been best to show the product early on. How can an ad or commercial be effective, if consumers do not know what product is being advertised?


In conclusion, both commercials share several similarities such as incorporating user-generated content and humor to

capture their audience’s attention. The house sitting and first date commercials both displayed these two concepts and were

effective at reaching their targeted audience. The major difference between the two commercials was the ways in which the

products were advertised. As previously stated, it may have been more effective on Pepsi’s part to have shown their product

more in this commercial.

Works Cited

Bosman, J. (2006, May 11). User-generated content starts to take hold in advertising. The New York Times. Retrieved February 12, 2011 from

Dominick, J. R. (2011). The dynamics of mass communication: Media in transition. New York: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.

Tom, G. (2001, March 22). Types of Humor in Television and Magazine Advertising. Retrieved from AllBusiness:

Good research articles about local search engine marketing.