By: Daniel Sweeney On: February 02, 2012 In: Advertising & Marketing Comments: 0

This Super Bowl certainly has a nostalgic feel to it. If you’re watching Sunday’s broadcast and suddenly overcome with that déjà vu feeling don’t be alarmed – not only did these two teams take the NFL’s biggest stage together just five years ago, but many of this year’s ads are featuring rehashed characters and redone bits. Below are just three of this year’s Super Bowl spot that pay homage to ads from years past. It ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Volkswagen and The Force. With the great success of 2011’s The Force, named AdWeek’s Best Ad of 2011, Volkswagen is venturing to the dark side again this year. Riding the coat tails, err cape tails in this case, of Vader this year are two separate spots: one with imperial dogs and the other taking place at some intergalactic sports bar.

Coca-Cola, Downy and Mean Joe. Following Super Bowl XIV in 1980, America was abuzz with Mean Joe Greene and Coca-Cola. Coke’s Thanks Mean Joe spot quickly reached iconic status, earning Best Ad recognition during the 1980 Clio Awards.

We recently saw the ad parodied in this 2009 Coke Zero spot, but look for another tribute this year, courtesy of Proctor & Gamble. P&G and their Downy brand add a new twist to the latest Thanks Mean Joe parody – their Mean Joe is actually played by the now 65-year-old (and likely not as mean) Joe Greene.

Honda and Ferris Bueller. Weeks ago a short video clip featuring Matthew Broderick appeared on YouTube, spotlighting the date 02.05.12. The 10-second video closely resembling the opening scene of Broderick’s 1984 hit movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

For days bloggers speculated over what the video might be teasing. Was Ferris Bueller returning to the big screen or was this nothing more than marketing tactic meant to generate buzz for a particular Super Bowl ad (which would explain the February 5 blurb). It ended up being the latter of the two, as earlier this week saw the full Honda Super Bowl spot revealed in its entirety.

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