Beer is good at getting you on the dance floor, sure. But perhaps beer companies’ most compelling attribute is the creativity involved in their commercials, highlighted nowhere more prominently than the Super Bowl. Anheuser-Busch debuted the “Bud Bowl” in 1989, and its success laid the groundwork for future installments and spinoffs of the original idea.
We’ll dive into the history of the Bud Bowl, and for all you nostalgic football viewers, we’ll attempt to answer a more salient question — is the Bud Bowl coming back?
History of the Bud Bowl
The Bud Bowl was a commercial featuring stop-motion animation of two beers — Budweiser and Bud Light — playing in a football game. (Did you know? It took about eight hours of work to produce three seconds of the Bud Bowl’s stop-motion filming process.)
Bob Costas and Paul Maguire were the announcers for the first Bud Bowl, which appeared during Super Bowl 23. While the San Francisco 49ers edged out the Cincinnati Bengals 20-16 in the Super Bowl, Budweiser narrowly escaped with a 27-24 victory over Bud Light in the Bud Bowl.
Budweiser and Bud Light would trade punches over the years, alternating victories. It wasn’t until Bud Bowl 5 that we had a repeat champion (Budweiser). From celebrity announcers Chris Berman and Marv Albert to Keith Jackson and Brent Musburger, the Bud Bowl always featured a tight contest between the two beers. I suppose it’s like telling the football audience which kid is your favorite. Let neutrality be your friend.
There were eight Bud Bowls in all, with the last one recorded in 1997.
Is the Bud Bowl Coming Back?
If the Bud Bowl is coming back, Anheuser-Busch is keeping it incredibly tight-lipped. While Budweiser and Bud Light have both leaked commercials for the 2023 Super Bowl campaign, none of them have featured this historical dime piece.
However, with enough mounting pressure from enough committed individuals to do the right thing, anything is possible. Never say never.