Put the game aspect of Super Bowl XLVII between the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens on hold for a minute.
It's worth it, since the Budweiser Clydesdale horses return in a new, heartfelt ad entitled "Brotherhood" that is also very savvy from a marketing standpoint.
The theme of "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac centers around revelation and coming-of-age and fosters an appropriate tone for what transpires throughout this ad. Not only does the horse grow up, but the trainer realizes after a lengthy period of introspection and blues that he needs to take action or needs something to break his way.
The trainer feels this way after a massive Budweiser truck shows up to the ranch to take the horse away, much to his dismay and apparent regret. He is proud of the horse he has raised but now is very lonely.
The scene then shifts ahead, three years into the future.
Thankfully, the man who is paralyzed by an inability to act stumbles across a newspaper headline, indicating that the Budweiser Clydesdales will be coming to Chicago—presumably close by or at least close enough to make the trip to the Windy City.
As the horses parade through the streets, the former owner sees his foal all grown up and is proud. Unfortunately, he doesn't sense that the horse is responding to him, and he sulks back to his truck.
He prepares to drive away, looking at his reflection in the side view mirror and processing what has just happened.
Suddenly, his Clydesdale comes galloping swiftly towards him, and replies to his command to slow up. The trainer embraces the horse, and the ad ends.
But what occurs after that is the sharpest part of this entire commercial. It is noted that the horse is still very young and hasn't been named, encouraging the audience to participate in its naming on Twitter. The strategy of releasing an ad or teaser prior to its airing in such an expensive spot is a source of debate, but it seems that Budweiser found a way to successfully pull it off here.
This ad marks a solid return to form for the Budweiser Clydesdales in what should be one of the most talked about TV spots on Sunday.