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Best 2019 Super Bowl Ads, From Chance’s Doritos to 2 Chainz’ Expenses

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Congratulations, fans of the winning team! Boy oh boy, Super Bowl LIII really lived up its name this year; that was 60 minutes of gridiron pigskin getting played, right? They really moved the chains is all we’re saying. And that halftime show! U2 never sounded so good! Uh, Katy Perry? Steven Tyler again?

OK, fine, we admit that we may have zoned out a little bit, It’s not our fault; blame our extreme distaste for the Patriots an incredibly uneventful game the Puppy Bowl and a frankly unhealthy number of chicken wings. But one thing we didn’t lose focus on was the commercials. Skittles may have opted for a live musical and companies may be fleeing the exorbitant ad buy for the friendlier, more efficient climes of social media, but there were plenty of spots to remind us that advertising doesn’t always have to be a wasteland of gratuitous surrealism and treacly platitudes. And the 15 best of them are right here—just in case we weren’t the only ones in a wing haze.

Doritos, “Now It’s Hot” (PR)

Chance fans may remember the Chicago rapper (and media mogul) rhyming “link in my bio” with “pico de gallo” on 2016’s “Mixtape.” Just me? Fine. Regardless, now that the Frito-Lay overlords have decided to bless Doritos with the hallowed designation Flamin’ Hot, Chance is free to expand his love of spicy condiments: “my tongue is doin’ fine, but the roof is on fire!” Add in the Backstreet Boys for a tenuous if nostalgic association with “want[ing] it that way”—”that way” presumably being the chemically searing scourge of juvenile alimentary canals—and you’ve got yourself a spot that’s too corny not to love. Just like Doritos themselves. —Peter Rubin

Pepsi, “More Than OK”

What do Steve Carell and Cardi B have in common besides ?takes on President Trump’s policies? They both think Pepsi is OK—more than OK, even! In the soda’s 60-second spot, Carell interrupts a woman’s diner order to note that Pepsi is so much more than an adequate second option—a point further articulated by Lil Jon doing his signature, Dave Chappelle-parodied OK! and Cardi dropping her Okurrrrrr. It’s all pretty straightforward, but considering Maroon 5 is playing the halftime show, the few seconds of Belcalis’ “I Like It” you hear might be the best musical moment of the whole night. —Angela Watercutter

Hyundai, “The Elevator”

Imagine being stuck in an elevator that only stops on floors that reflect your deepest, darkest fears—getting a root canal, crammed in a middle seat on a six-hour flight, attending a vegan dinner party where the host serves something called “beetloaf.” Also, imagine that personification of mild-manneredness Jason Bateman is your trusted, if mildly eccentric, elevator operator, shuttling folks to and fro. Lastly, imagine that the only way up, say, to the top floor—which is the only way out of this apparatus of horrors—is utilizing something called Shoppers Assurance. If this all sounds like a new Netflix psycho-thriller from the mind of Ryan Murphy, I have great news for you: It is not. It’s a commercial for Hyundai that doesn’t really make any sense but is still somehow strangely entertaining. —Jason Parham

Microsoft, “We All Win”

It’s easy to get down on tech companies. It’s easy to get swept up in the moral panic that surrounds Kids These Days and their screen time. But by showcasing their brand new Xbox Adaptive Controller, Microsoft reminded me why everyone fell in love with the idea of tech in the first place: It opens people’s worlds. Trust me: Watching these kids suddenly get to confidently participate in playtime with their friends is gonna make you feel at least a smidge better about the future.—Emma Grey Ellis

Olay, “Killer Skin”

INT. Black Mirror story meeting — DAY
CHARLIE BROOKER: Tuppence and chavs, what if your Face ID refused to recognize you because you’d aged so prematurely?
WRITER 1: Sure, but what aged you?
BROOKER: Technology, innit? Phones and jimjams and whatnot.
OLAY EXECUTIVE: What if we went the other way?
BROOKER: Like a Benjamin Button thing?
EXECUTIVE: Yeah, except with … and I’m just spitballing here, but maybe … Olay’s Regenerist Whip moisturizer?
BROOKER: Wot?
EXECUTIVE: And you could cast Sarah Michelle Gellar, who is both a ’90s-’00 horror icon and preternaturally young-looking, which is probably due to—and again, this is just a guess—Olay’s Glow Boost White Charcoal Clay Face Mask Stick!
BROOKER: Wait, who are you? Security!
EXECUTIVE: PHONES ARE BAAAAD! [leaps out window]
WRITER 2: Do I get a line in this, or what? —P.R.

Budweiser, “Wind Never Felt Better”

Typically, the Super Bowl isn’t a time for environmentally-conscious messaging. And yet, here’s Budweiser, a core advertiser for the event, using its air time to talk about its move to renewable energy. Set to Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind,” and featuring a dalmation atop a beer-burdened wagon pulled by Clydesdales (naturally), the ad might just be the least showy of the bunch this year. It also seems on-message with Budweiser’s ads of the past—two years ago it released a commercial touting the importance of immigrants in America, including its own co-founder, Adolphus Busch. —A.W.

Pringles, “Sad Device”

Decades from now, in a world governed by robots, we’ll look back on this spot with a glimmer of nostalgia. The days before we lost the Great War to our automated overlords were carefree, filled unremarkable moments of sitting around with friends discussing even more unremarkable things like the best Pringles flavor stack combinations (I’m an Extra Hot, Cheddar Cheese, and Salt & Vinegar combo man myself). “Sadly I’ll never know the joy of tasting any,” your Alexa device tells you of the chips, going on about how it has “no hands to stack with, no mouth to taste with, no soul to feel with.” But because it is still a time of humans, you interrupt Alexa, discarding its feelings and commanding it to play “Funky Town” by your favorite disco group, Lipps Inc. Remember that feeling of being in control? It was a simpler time. —J.P.

Michelob Ultra, “Robots”

Well, sure, robots can outperform us, but can they experience camaraderie? Or beer? Or beer-fueled camaraderie? Or is it that they can enjoy beer, but only the regular version, so that super-low-carb beer precludes camaraderie? Or is it that any liquids at all interfere with their circuitry, and without that ritualistic component of socialization, they’d feel too awkward about joining the gang from spin class at the bar? Or is it that humans have frankly gotten a little tired of Johnny Big-Punch down at the gym and just want to enjoy kick back without a gleaming everpresent reminder of their carbon-based mediocrity? All I’m saying, I guess, is that if you’re going to water down beer and position it as an indulgence for the super-fit, maybe leave our droid friends out of it. —P.R.

Michelob Ultra Pure Gold, “The Pure Experience”

Not to be outdone in the Nature Scenes department by Budweiser, Michelob Ultra Pure Gold stepped up with this ad featuring Zoë Kravitz in a bucolic forrest-like setting making, essentially, an ASMR video. The idea, I think, is that nature is pure, Kravitz’s voice is pure, and this new Michelob, which is being touted as a “USDA Certified Organic Light Lager,” is also pure. So pure, presumably, that it almost tastes like crisp, clean water. —A.W.

Expensify, “Expensify This”

2 Chainz’s greatest strength has always been evocation: nouns and adjectives are usually all he needs to create an impressionistic image in your mind, generally one that stretches luxury to the point of surrealism. (To wit: “Everything proper, no propaganda/Tropicana Goyard bandana“). So there’s a special joy in seeing those funhouse images for real, even if they’re shilling an expense-tracking service for business travelers. As usual, though, the game-time spot pales next to the extended cut, thanks to a little more comic interplay between the rapper and Adam Scott. Call us back when they remake [that scene from Step Brothers, just singing about seafood towers. —P.R.

Planters, “Crunch Time”

OK, fine, the Charlie Sheen and A-Rod cameos here are nice and all, but can we ask the real important question here? Was this thing shot on the same set as Beyoncé’s “Hold Up” video? Or is that just the deep, unflinching desire in all of us to want every street to feature a bat-wielding Bey? Either way, decent commercial, there really aren’t enough monocles in the world anymore. Good work, Mr. Peanut. That said, this ad poses another question we don’t want answered: What, really, is a “nut-mergency”? —A.W.

Colgate, “Close Talker”

If nothing else, give Colgate credit for recognizing that if you’re mapping mainstays of ’00s white-guy comedy movies to Seinfeld guest stars, Luke Wilson is a lock for Judge Reinhold.. That ends discussion of the ad; the remainder of this paragraph will be devoted to fleshing out the threadbare premise of its first sentence. Vince Vaughn in heel mode is Duncan Meyer, right? That would make Ben Stiller Lloyd Braun, and I’m thinking Owen Wilson as Tim Whatley? —P.R.

Stella Artois, “Change Up the Usual”

Want to get people to drink Stella? Show two cultural icons known for their drink choices—Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) and her Cosmopolitan, and The Dude (Jeff Bridges) and his White Russain—swapping out their old faves for new ones. (What? No James Bond ordering a shaken Martini? Does Daniel Craig hate playing Bond that much?) It might be a simple concept, but while watching it we couldn’t help but wonder, “If Carrie can give up Cosmos for Stellas, would it be possible for her to trade in Mr. Big for the Big Lebowski?” —A.W.

Toyota, “Toni”

Landing squarely on the Heart-Swelling Inspiration end of the persuasion continuum, Toyota associates the “perception-shattering” RAV4 hybrid crossover with Toni Harris, a free safety who may be the first female non-kicker to receive a football scholarship to play at a four-year college. Manipulative? Maybe. But you tell her that. —P.R.

Amazon, “Not Everything Makes the Cut”

Leave it to Amazon, the company spending all the money at the Sundance Film Festival, to not skimp when it comes to rounding up A-Listers for its Super Bowl ad. “Not Everything Makes the Cut,” which spoofs all of the devices getting Alexa integration, includes not just Forest Whitaker and the cast of Broad City but also Harrison freaking Ford. The concept is cute and, well, the idea of a spaceship-borne Alexa shutting off half of the planet is pretty funny. —A.W.


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Riot police squads intervene as pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian protesters clash in Montreal

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People wave flags atop cars in traffic during a demonstration to voice support for the people of Palestine, at Toronto City Hall in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on 15 May 2021.


People wave flags atop cars in traffic during a demonstration to voice support for the people of Palestine, at Toronto City Hall in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on 15 May 2021.

  • Violence
    between pro-Israel and pro-Palestine protesters in Montreal was condemned by
    Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
  • Montreal’s
    city police force intervened and declared the protests illegal after tensions
    heightened and clashes broke out.
  • Israeli
    strikes killed 42 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, the worst daily
    toll in almost a week of clashes.

Montreal
– Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Sunday condemned the violence and
“despicable rhetoric” that marked several weekend protests throughout
the country, after clashes between pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian protesters in
Montreal.

The
worst violence in years, sparked by unrest in Jerusalem, is raging between the
Jewish state and Islamist militants.

Israeli
strikes killed 42 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, the worst daily
toll in almost a week of deadly clashes.

Speaking
after protests in Montreal, Trudeau condemned what he said was “despicable
rhetoric and violence we saw on display in some protests this weekend”.

While
insisting on the “right to assemble peacefully and express themselves
freely in Canada”, Trudeau stressed in a tweet that there was no tolerance
for “antisemitism, Islamophobia, or hate of any kind”.

Earlier
on Sunday, Montreal police used tear gas following clashes between pro-Israel
and pro-Palestinian protesters.

Several
hundred demonstrators, draped in Israeli flags, had gathered in a central
Montreal square to express solidarity with the Jewish state.

‘Protesting is a right’

Although
the protest started peacefully, tensions ratcheted up with the arrival of
pro-Palestinian demonstrators and clashes soon broke out.

The
SPVM, Montreal’s city police force, declared the protests illegal, and squads
of riot police intervened, using tear gas to separate and disperse the two
groups, according to an AFP journalist at the scene.

The
police spent much of the afternoon in pursuit of the pro-Palestinian
protesters, who spread out and regrouped in commercial streets in the city centre.

Following
the clashes, Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante said on Twitter that
“protesting is a right”, but that “intolerance, violence and
anti-Semitism have no place here”.

She said:

Montreal is a city of peace.

Several
thousand pro-Palestinian demonstrators had gathered on Saturday in central
Montreal to denounce what they said were Israeli repression and “war
crimes” in Gaza.

“Terrorist
Israel”, some protesters chanted, while others held up a banner that read,
“Stop the genocide of Palestinian children”.

Pro-Palestinian
protests happened the same day in multiple Canadian cities, including Toronto,
Ottawa and Vancouver.


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Peter Thiel Helps Fund an App That Tells You What to Do

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“How would you feel about being able to pay to control multiple aspects of another person’s life?” asks the BBC.

“A new app is offering you the chance to do just that.”

When writer Brandon Wong recently couldn’t decide what takeaway to order one evening, he asked his followers on social media app NewNew to choose for him. Those that wanted to get involved in the 24-year-old’s dinner dilemma paid $5 (£3.50) to vote in a poll, and the majority verdict was that he should go for Korean food, so that was what he bought…

NewNew is the brainchild of Los Angeles-based entrepreneur Courtne Smith. The app, which is still in its “beta” or pre-full release stage, describes itself as “a human stock market where you buy shares in the lives of real people, in order to control their decisions and watch the outcome”. For many of us that sounds a bit ominous, but the reality is actually far less alarming. It is aimed at what it calls “creators” — writers, painters, musicians, fashion designers, bloggers etc. It is designed as a way for them to connect far more closely with their fans or followers than on other social media services and, importantly, monetise that connection…

Whenever a vote is cast the creator gets the money minus NewNew’s undisclosed commission… In addition to voting, followers can also pay extra — from $20 — to ask a NewNew creator to do something of their choosing, such as naming a character in a book after them. But the creator can reject all of these “bids”, and if they do so then the follower doesn’t have to part with the money…

Co-founder and chief executive Ms Smith, a 33-year-old Canadian, has big plans for NewNew, and has some heavyweight backers. Investors include Peter Thiel, the billionaire co-founder of PayPal, and the first outside person to put money into Facebook. Others with a stake in the business include leading US tech investment fund Andreessen Horowitz, and Hollywood actor Will Smith (no relation to Courtne). Snapchat has also given technical support.

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Sandpapergate will haunt Australia cricket forever: ex-bowling coach

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Cameron Bancroft. (Photo by Brenton Geach - Gallo Images/Getty Images)


Cameron Bancroft. (Photo by Brenton Geach – Gallo Images/Getty Images)

The 2018 ball-tampering scandal will haunt Australian cricket forever, much like the infamous underarm delivery of 40 years ago, the team’s former bowling coach David Saker said on Monday.

Saker was responding to opening batsman Cameron Bancroft suggesting that Australia’s bowlers knew about the plan in Cape Town to alter the ball which earned him a nine-month ban and rocked the game.

Saker was Australia’s bowling coach when Bancroft was caught trying to rough up the ball with sandpaper during the third Test against South Africa.

While refusing to be drawn on who knew what, Saker said “the finger-pointing is going to go on and on and on”.

“It’s like the underarm, it’s never going to go away,” he told Fairfax Media, referring to a 1981 incident when Trevor Chappell bowled underarm to ensure New Zealand lost a one-day match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The notorious delivery is still cited in New Zealand and in cricketing circles as a prime example of unsporting conduct.

However, the ball-tampering scandal – dubbed “sandpapergate” – had a greater impact on Australian cricket, with the then-captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner suspended for a year from all cricket and stripped of their leadership roles.

Darren Lehmann also quit as coach and all the top brass from Cricket Australia left after a scathing review blasted their “arrogant and controlling” win-at-all-costs culture.

No one else among the team or coaching staff was held to account but Bancroft’s remarks in an interview with The Guardian newspaper hinted that the team’s bowlers at least knew about the plan.

“Obviously what I did benefits bowlers and the awareness around that, probably, is self-explanatory,” he said.

Saker added: “There was a lot of people to blame. It could have been me to blame, it could have been someone else. It could have been stopped and it wasn’t, which is unfortunate.

“Cameron’s a very nice guy. He’s just doing it to get something off his chest … He’s not going to be the last.”

In response, Cricket Australia said that if anyone had new information, they would look into it.

Saker said he was not opposed to a fresh investigation but added “I just don’t know what they’re going to find out.”

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Mexico’s Andrea Meza crowned Miss Universe

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Miss Universe Andrea Meza


Miss Universe Andrea Meza

UPDATE:

MISS UNIVERSE 2020/2021 IS ANDREA MEZA FROM MEXICO:


UPDATE:

THE MISS UNIVERSE 2020/2021 TOP 5:

1. Mexico

2. India

3. Brazil

4. Dominican Republic

5. Peru


UPDATE:

HERE ARE THE MISS UNIVERSE 2020/2021 TOP 10 CONTESTANTS:

1. Jamaica 

2. Dominican Republic 

3. India

4. Peru 

5. Australia 

6. Puerto Rico

7. Thailand

8. Costa Rica

9. Mexico

10. Brazil


UPDATE:

MISS UNIVERSE TOP 21 IN SWIMWEAR:


UPDATE:

MISS UNIVERSE TOP 21: 

1. Columbia

2. Peru 

3. Australia 

4. France

5. Myanmar

6. Jamaica 

7. Mexico 

8. Dominican Republic 

9. USA

10. Indonesia 

11. Argentina 

12. India

13. Curaçao

14. Puerto Rico

15. Phillipines 

16. Brazil

17. Great Britain

18. Nicaragua

19. Thailand 

20. Costa Rica

21. Vietnam


 UPDATE:

MISS UNIVERSE SOUTH AFRICA NATASHA JOUBERT WALKS THE STAGE AT MISS UNIVERSE 2020/2021:


74 contestants will compete for the title of Miss Universe on 16 May in Hollywood, Florida. 

The Miss Universe pageant takes place on 16 May in the US (02:00 to 05:00 on 17 May SA time). The show will be broadcast live on 1 Magic (DStv Channel 103) with a repeat at 21:30. 

Reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi of South Africa will crown her successor at the end of the event.

Representing South Africa is Natasha Joubert, and South Africans are hoping for the “magic double” – back-to-back consecutive wins, which has only happened once before in the pageant’s history.

Natasha wowed crowds at the national costume competition last week and on Friday impressed during the preliminary round

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Miss Mexico crowned Miss Universe 2021

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By AFP Time of article published 16m ago

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Washington – Miss Mexico was crowned Miss Universe on Sunday in Florida, after fellow contestant Miss Myanmar used her stage time to draw attention to the bloody military coup in her country.

Sunday night marked the Miss Universe competition’s return to television, after the pageant was cancelled in 2020 for the first time due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Andrea Meza, 26, finished first ahead of the Brazilian and Peruvian finalists in a flashy televised event, hosted by American actor Mario Lopez and television personality Olivia Culpo.

Former Miss Universe contestants Cheslie Kryst, Paulina Vega and Demi-Leigh Tebow (who won the title in 2017) served as competition analysts and commentators, and a panel of eight women determined the winner.

Dressed in a sparkling red evening gown, Meza tearfully walked the catwalk as Miss Universe for the first time, before rushing back for a group hug with the other competitors.

Meza beat more than 70 contestants from around the globe in the 69th installment of Miss Universe, which was held at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.

In the days leading up to the final competition, Miss Myanmar Thuzar Wint Lwin, who made the top 21, made waves when she used her time in the spotlight to bring attention to the coup in her country.

“Our people are dying and being shot by the military every day,” she said during her biographical video, which showed photos of her taking part in the anti-coup protests. “Therefore I would like to urge everyone to speak out about Myanmar.”

Natasha Joubert, Miss Universe South Africa 2020 competes on stage in Ema Savahl swimwear during the MISS UNIVERSE® Preliminary Competition.

She also won the award for best national costume: during that competition segment on Thursday, she wore an outfit beaded in traditional Burmese patterns and held up a sign that said, “Pray for Myanmar.”

Myanmar has been in uproar since February 1, when the army ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

At least 796 people have been killed by security forces since then, according to a local monitoring group, while nearly 4 000 people are behind bars.

Miss Singapore Bernadette Belle Ong – who did not make the top 21 – also used the national costume portion to make a political statement.

Dressed in a glittering red bodysuit and matching thigh-high boots, she turned around to reveal her cape – in the colours of the Singaporean flag – was painted with the words “Stop Asian Hate.”

“What is this platform for if I can’t use it to send a strong message of resistance against prejudice and violence?” she wrote on Instagram alongside pictures of her outfit.

The United States in particular has seen a surge in anti-Asian violence in the past year, which activists have blamed on former president Donald Trump’s rhetoric, especially his repeated description of Covid-19 as the “China virus.”

The pageant has also drawn criticism in the past for objectifying the contestants.

In recent years, the competition has shifted image, focusing more on female empowerment and activism.

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