Top 10 Pepsi Commercials
VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
WRITTEN BY: Nick Spake
It's the drink that speaks to every generation. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we'll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Pepsi Commercials.
For this list, we're taking a look at the most famous advertisements for Pepsi-Cola.
It’s the drink that speaks to every generation. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Pepsi Commercials.
For this list, we’re taking a look at the most famous advertisements for Pepsi-Cola.
#10: The Joy of Pepsi
You’ll find throughout this list that many Pepsi commercials are like mini music videos, featuring some of the most recognizable artists of all time. At the dawn of the 21st century, Britney Spears signed a promotional deal with the cola company for $7-8 million. Her initial Pepsi endorsement effectively encapsulated the soft drink’s universal appeal. At a bottling plant, Britney raises the roof with her infectious choreography and a catchy pop song that’s still stuck in our heads even over a decade later. Britney not only attracts the factory workers, but all the people watching her on TV. Whether you’re an average Joe or Bob Dole, the joy of Pepsi is truly a worldwide phenomenon.
#9: Nothing Else Is a Pepsi
Alien vs. Predator! Batman vs. Superman! Pepsi vs. Coca-Cola? In the world of carbonated beverages, Pepsi and Coke are seen as heated rivals. This commercial is definitely a highlight in the seemingly never-ending cola wars saga. The ad opens on a heartwarming note as a Pepsi trucker and a Coke trucker come together at a diner. Bonding over work and family, the guys offer each other a taste of their drinks. The Pepsi trucker merely takes a sip of the Coca-Cola. When the Coke trucker tries the Pepsi, however, he refuses to part ways with the can. In the blink of an eye, the buddies become mortal enemies, instigating a hilarious diner brawl.
#8: Night Shift with Shakira
There’s a common theme in virtually every soft drink commercial: if you buy our product, you’ll instantly become that most desirable person on the planet. This ad is no exception, but it also manages to poke fun at the familiar trope. As a convenient store employee is stocking Pepsi, he’s drawn to a cutout of Colombian singer Shakira. The cardboard cutout suddenly becomes the real deal as the employee takes the lead in a feisty tango. The nerdy worker is brought back to reality, though, as he notices all the spectators observing him through the window. It goes to show that having Pepsi probably won’t get you any ladies, but we can always dream, right?
#7: Cheating on Coke
As mentioned before, there are two types of people in this world: people that prefer Pepsi and people that prefer Coke. According to this priceless commercial, even Coca-Cola employees secretly favor the joy of Pepsi. Unloading a shipment of Coke, a deliveryman decides to quench his thirst with the competing beverage. Hank Williams’ “Your Cheatin’ Heart” provides the perfect musical accompaniment as he attempts to sneak a drink. Unfortunately, this guy’s about as subtle as a bull in a china shop, unleashing an avalanche of cans. What makes this especially funny is how the delivery man nonchalantly walks away after the accident. Although he pretends nothing happened, a security camera has forever immortalized his infidelity.
#6: Apartment 10G
This commercial has the essence of a situation comedy - so it’s only appropriate that it would star a sitcom legend like Michael J. Fox. In a classic screwball setup, the only thing standing between Fox and a beautiful neighbor is a Diet Pepsi. Since his Pepsi supply has run dry, he desperately treks down the fire escape and through a rainstorm to reach the nearest vendor. Fox makes it back with the pop, but the night is still far from over, as he must now retrieve a second drink for his neighbor’s roommate, Daniel. This ad proved so popular that Pepsi re-aired it during Fox’s goodbye episode of “Spin City,” commemorating the actor’s remarkable career.
#5: Crazy in Love
Beyoncé is no stranger to endorsements, most notably signing a $50 million contract with Pepsi in 2012. Almost a decade before making this lucrative deal, the pop star took center stage in this ad. It’s an ordinary night at a lonely gas station until a fancy vehicle pulls up. The driver is none other than the definitive Queen B, who helps herself to a Pepsi. She proceeds to ask the young attendant for directions, but he’s too star-struck to even get one word out. Luckily, Beyoncé is fluent in stuttering. With “Crazy in Love” playing in the background, the commercial speaks to everyone’s fantasy of having a chance encounter with a celebrity.
Over the years, Pepsi has enlisted countless superstars to help promote their product. This commercial in particular went above and beyond, assembling four of the biggest names in music. Set in a Roman coliseum, Enrique Iglesias reins over his subjects with a cooler of Pepsi by his side. Rather than battling to the death, Beyoncé, Britney Spears, and Pink fight the power with a rendition of “We Will Rock You.” In addition to rocking the crowd, they also rock the Pepsi right out of Iglesias’ grasp. As the ladies help themselves to a victory drink, Iglesias is given a gladiator sendoff. With epic production values and an empowering atmosphere, it’s impossible not to be entertained.
#3: Make a Wish
Madonna took the world by storm in 1989 with her controversial single, “Like a Prayer.” Before the iconic music video hit the scene, the song was featured in this dreamlike commercial for Pepsi. Overflowing with a nostalgic ambiance, the Queen of Pop takes a trip down memory lane as she watches old home movies. It all works up to a touching final moment, as the singer tells her younger self to make a wish. Airing during the 31st Grammy Awards, the commercial was reportedly seen by an estimated 250 million viewers. Pepsi subsequently pulled the ad following protests from religious groups. During its short run, though, the commercial spoke to a whole new generation.
#2: Cindy Crawford
By 1992, Cindy Crawford was already one of the most sought-after supermodels in the industry. Once this commercial came out, however, she only became more enticing. Pulling up in a red Lamborghini, Crawford makes her way to a Pepsi machine. A couple of local boys appear infatuated with Crawford, who sports a pair of Daisy Dukes and a tank top. As she pours the icy beverage down her throat, we expect the kids to comment on her flawless figure. Instead, they drool at the sight of the Pepsi can. Catching the audience off guard, the ad is as humorous as it is tempting. It inspired several throwbacks and parodies, cementing its place in marketing history.
Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
#1: Michael Jackson’s New Generation
If you haven’t noticed already, pop stars and soda pop go hand in hand. So naturally, Michael Jackson was the ideal spokesperson for a legendary Pepsi campaign. Reworking the 1983 song, “Billie Jean,” this commercial gave birth to a new Pepsi generation. Before he was dancing to Tom Jones on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” Alfonso Ribeiro was channeling Michael Jackson here. Strutting down the street, little Carlton bumps into Michael and the other members of The Jackson 5. With hypnotic chorography and refreshing vocals, this ad demonstrates why MJ was the King of Pop in every possible sense. Jackson was set to shoot another Pepsi commercial, although this venture resulted in an infamous accident.