By Sam Manzella and Chris Rudolph
Did you only tune in to last night’s Super Bowl for the commercials? Us too — and imagine our delight when a handful of ads aired during CBS’s broadcast featured queer icons like RuPaul and Lil Nas X. According to GLAAD, at least four commercials from Sunday’s Super Bowl LV were LGBTQ-inclusive.
— GLAAD (@glaad) February 7, 2021
The 2021 Super Bowl actually had significantly fewer LGBTQ-inclusive ads than last year’s broadcast, which featured a record-breaking total of 11. Prior to then, queer people were virtually invisible during the Big Game.
Of course, the work to advance LGBTQ equality doesn’t end with representation in commercials. But broadcasting queer-inclusive ads during one of America’s biggest nights in sports can have “a profound impact on LGBTQ visibility and acceptance,” said GLAAD president and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. According to Forbes, an average of 102.1 million viewers nationwide watched last year’s Super Bowl.
Below, read up on queer-inclusive Super Bowl LV commercials from Paramount+, Logitech, M&Ms, and Michelob ULTRA.
RuPaul for Paramount+
Ain’t no mountain high enough for Mama Ru! The Emmy-winning host of RuPaul’s Drag Race was just one of the many famous faces who made it to the peak of the Paramount+ mountain in an ad for the new streaming service, a rebrand of CBS All Access. Paramount+ will be the streaming home of your favorite shows from ViacomCBS, including everything from Spongebob Squarepants to CBS News. Patrick Stewart (Star Trek’s Picard), Gayle King, and Stephen Colbert all have lines in the new Super Bowl commercial, but keep your eyes peeled for a silent Ru in the background, shimmering atop the mountain. Come through, altitude!
Lil Nas X for Logitech
The chart-topping gay rapper of “Old Town Road” fame made his Super Bowl debut with this defiantly bold ad for Logitech, a Swiss-American manufacturer of computer gear and software. Donning cyan blue from head to toe, Lil Nas X opens, closes, and narrates the minute-long montage of ordinary people using Logitech gadgets. The soundtrack for the commercial is a new Lil Nas X song called “Call Me By Your Name” (get ready, gurls — it’s already Rihanna-approved).
Dan Levy for M&Ms
Chocolate is a great peacemaker — at least according to this new M&Ms ad. The spot shows people apologizing for awkward moments with bags of candy, and it ends with Schitt’s Creek star and co-creator Dan Levy talking to the green and brown M&Ms, promising to stop eating them. Well, maybe after he’s done with the red M&Ms being held hostage in the back of his car. So dark!
Billie Jean King for Michelob ULTRA
The out tennis legend was featured briefly in this inspiring spot for the popular light-beer company. At just a minute long, the ad spliced footage of people playing games and drinking Michelob ULTRA with a photo montage of beloved pro athletes. We’ll cheers to that.