Coke To Recreate "Mean Joe Greene" Ad With Troy Polamalu

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Everyone remembers the Mean Joe Greene ad from 1979 in which the Steeler tosses his gigantic #75 jersey to a kid who just gave the D-lineman his bottle of Coca-Cola. Well Coke is going revive the old ad, but with a modern twist. This time the product will be Coke Zero, and feature current Steelers' player, Troy Polamalu. Via USA Today....

NEW YORK — The Coke (KO) vs. Pepsi (PEP) cola wars will heat up for the Super Bowl. But in a nod to changing consumer tastes, one of Coca-Cola's three Super Sunday ads will tout fast-growing, no-calorie Coke Zero, not Classic Coke.

Having the Steelers in the game is a bonus for the Zero ad: It features Steelers star safety Troy Polamalu.

"We're thrilled about Troy, and we're thrilled about the Steelers. … (It's) going to be a powerful spot in the game," said Katie Bayne, North American chief marketing officer, as she and other executives on Wednesday introduced Coke's new global ad campaign with the theme "Open Happiness."

The Zero ad and two upbeat Coca-Cola ads will air in the second half. The two Coke ads, part of the new campaign, include one in which insects try to steal a bottle of Coke from a young man sleeping in a park. In another, a man walks through a city and people around him turn into computer avatars.

Bayne gave no details of the Zero ad, but people briefed on it said it is a send-up of the 1979 Coke ad in which the Steelers' Mean Joe Greene tosses his jersey to a young fan who gave him a Coke. It aired in the 1980 Super Bowl and remains one of the best-remembered game ads.
The ad is probably one of the most famous Sports ads, outside of some of the old Miller Lite spots, so this is definitely an excellent idea. Plus having Troy in the game, makes it even better. Here's the old ad in case you forgot it....



In a happy coincidence, Coke ad features a Pittsburgh Steeler (USA Today)

5 Comments:

Who here has a pick for the game? I think it'll be closer than people expect...but Pittsburgh will still win by rushing Warner. These guys have some pretty interesting team-by-team breakdowns.

Josh said...
Jan 22, 2009, 3:58:00 PM  

This ad reeks of taste infringement!

/watches too much TV

GMoney said...
Jan 22, 2009, 4:15:00 PM  

HAHA can't wait to see it.. they better not fuck up the 'tradition' of the commercial (see: new Indiana Jones movie)

Mingo said...
Jan 22, 2009, 5:42:00 PM  

they better not fuck up the 'tradition' of the commercial

If they can butcher the actual product (New Coke), what chance does a commercial have?

Jan 22, 2009, 5:51:00 PM  

Problem is that in the '09 version of the commercial, the kid immediately puts the jersey up on eBay.

Jason said...
Jan 23, 2009, 3:05:00 PM  

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