Commercials for fast food are simply inescapable. We see them almost every time we watch television, flaunting their glossy burgers, fries, shakes, and whichever other product du jour they’re looking to hype up. Oftentimes these advertisements go in one ear and out the other, lucky to even elicit a "that looks tasty" from our subconscious (or, more realistically, from our kids).
But some commercials stick around for a little while longer. Whether it’s due to a snappy catchphrase, a creative storyline, a humorous spokesperson, or a catchy song, every so often these brands strike gold, and their commercial reaches that pinnacle that every ad executive dreams of: they enter the pop culture lexicon.
Almost everyone has some company motto or ad campaign centerpiece stuck somewhere in their subconscious. Think of the Coca-Cola polar bears, for example, or the Budweiser frogs. But when it comes to fast food, no other industry has worked so hard to capture the public’s attention through advertising dollars, and television advertising in particular. In fact, some might even forget that Ronald McDonald and his cast of characters, including the Hamburglar and Mayor McCheese, were invented solely to sell fast food to children.
In assembling our list of the top 10 fast-food commercials, our primary consideration was the level that they ingrained themselves into the public consciousness; the individual commercials that ranked the highest on our list were the ones whose imagery had some real staying power. For example, the phrase "Pizza! Pizza!" quickly associates itself with Little Caesars, but you’d be hard-pressed to recall the individual storyline of a Little Caesars commercial (and for that reason, it didn’t make our list). On the other hand, the phrase "Avoid the Noid" conjures images of not only Domino’s, but the Noid himself in the commercial. The top commercial on our list was not only effective, but extremely memorable and much-loved, and the lead actress even achieved a level of celebrity thanks to it.
Read on for our list of the top 10 fast-food commercials of all time.