When putting Super Bowl commercials together, companies need to go big or go home, considering millions of dollars are being spent for such limited air time. Thus, Planters is heading to Super Bowl LIV with an ad that goes beyond its celebrity cameos and big explosions to legitimately kill off its beloved mascot Mr. Peanut. What the (s)hell?
Yes, you read that right. Mr. Peanut, the monocled and top-hatted gentle-nut that has been the face of Planters for around 100 years, is now dead and completely obliterated thanks to a new marketing campaign centered around a Super Bowl ad featuring Dolemite Is My Name's Wesley Snipes and Veep vet Matt Walsh. Check out the ad below, and try to find a working balance between slight hunger and absolute confusion.
For those unable to watch, the ad features Wesley Snipes, Matt Walsh and Mr. Peanut on a road trip, belting out Cutting Crew's "(I Just) Died in Your Arms." A road-crossing turtle causes the NUTmobile to overturn, sending its passengers over a cliff to hang on to a branch for dear life. Once the branch starts to crack due to weight issues, Mr. Peanut lets go and falls onto the crashed NUTmobile, which then explodes and eliminates all hope for Mr. Peanut's survival.
While this sounds like the workings of a peanut-allergic editor at The Onion, Mr. Peanut's self-sacrificial plummet is a legitimate ad campaign from Planters and parent company Kraft Heinz. The commercial is set to air during the third quarter of Super Bowl LIV, and will be followed by Mr. Peanut's funeral, whatever that means. Should we expect to see Wesley Snipes and Matt Walsh there? Well, at least Walsh for sure. Check out this bizarrely amusing statement the Upright Citizens Brigade co-founder released.
Mr. Peanut was more than just a friend – he was a hero. His passing has shook me to my core. I’ll do my best to honor his legacy and be there for my friends like he was always there for me even until our last wild ride together. I’ll pay my last respects during his funeral on Super Bowl Sunday. I encourage our entire nation to do the same.
Mr. Peanut has been a Super Bowl commercial staple in recent years, with the character making a push into pop culture a decade or so ago when Robert Downey Jr. began voicing him for TV ads. Downey Jr. was eventually replaced by SNL vet Bill Hader, though the character obviously didn't have a voice in the ad above. Or else he might have screamed the entire way down to his death.
Anyone who happens to see the NUTmobile before or on Super Bowl Sunday will receive a commemorative pin that showcases Mr. Peanut's life. (Which I am so down for.) Planters is also going hard on social media with the campaign, with fans encouraged to use #RIPeanut and a blackened monocle when sharing their favorite Mr. Peanut memories online. Fans also have a chance to win special commemorative packaging that celebrates the many art styles Mr. Peanut has utilized over the years.
With many more commercials that will keep viewers locked in for the evening, Super Bowl LIV (between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs) is set to air on Fox on Sunday, February 2, at 6:30 p.m. ET. The halftime show entertainment will be provided by Hustlers' Jennifer Lopez and Shakira, which should make for quite a different show from last year's Maroon 5 fest.