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Super Bowl Ad Ripoff: Budweiser vs. Pepsi

On Sunday, Anomaly debuted the above Super Bowl spot for Budweiser, “Eternal Optimism.” In 60 seconds, Budweiser parallels its own history with that of the country of its birth, starting from the end of Prohibition and concluding in the era of pop-up hip-hop concerts aka “present day.” Yes, it’s a bit silly to imagine that Budweiser was the drink of choice for patrons of Studio 54, but it’s always fun to see how advertisers choose to depict (or rewrite) U.S. history. It’s also interesting to note that, as one tipster suggests, Anomaly’s representation of the last century closely resembles TBWA/Chiat/Day’s 2009 Obama inauguration spot for Pepsi.

Before we turn to you, dear readers, for finger pointing/waving, let’s discuss the similarities and differences of these two spots.

Similarities: Flapper girls, the end of WWII, greasers, Studio 54, break dancing, and grunge body-passing.
Differences: Hippies vs. Moon landing, Berlin Wall vs. the “Miracle on Ice,” and Budweiser’s use of the dance party.

Given this evidence, is this case an ad ripoff? Is this a case of coincidence? Or, is this, as they say, “just what happens?”

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