Top 10 Most Iconic '90s Commercials

RELATED VIDEOS

Share

Top 10 Most Iconic '90s Commercials

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Matt Klem
These iconic 90s commercials still hold up years later. Our countdown includes Budweiser Frogs, Mortal Monday, Think Different, and more!
Transcript

Top 10 Iconic 90s Commercials


Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Iconic ‘90s Commercials.

For this list, we’ll be looking at memorable individual commercials or recurring campaigns from the 1990s that pack a ton of nostalgia.

Do you have a favorite ‘90s commercial? Let us know in the comments.

#10: Budweiser Frogs
Budweiser


The 1990s were a prime time for advertising when it came to Budweiser beer. The decade saw several very creative ad campaigns that have stuck with us for years. For this particular commercial, three frogs sit outside a bar with a bright “Budweiser” sign on top. As opposed to their typical “ribbit,” each frog opts to vocalize one syllable of the word shown on the sign. At first, you have no idea what they’re saying, but as the camera pans up, the three frogs “speak” in the right order, revealing what they’re trying to say. Creative and funny, it’s a memorable way to sell a cold one.

#9: Doublemint Twins
Doublemint Gum


For a long time in print and on TV, Wrigley’s advertised their Doublemint gum, showcasing sets of twins. This reached a peak in the 1990s, yielding a plethora of commercials featuring sets of twins. What better way to advertise a gum called “Doublemint” than to see twins enjoying the flavor of one of Wrigley’s signature chewers, right? One ad even featured Tia & Tamera Mowry, who later became famous for their roles in the TV sitcom “Sister Sister”. For those who lived through the era, “Doublemint” immediately brings to mind thoughts of identical twins.

#8: Mortal Monday
Mortal Kombat


Double Dragon and Street Fighter may have started it, but Mortal Kombat certainly finished it. When this game hit arcades in 1992, kids were lined up to get a chance to try and execute their own “fatality” against their opponents. Given the game’s popularity, a console release was inevitable. The “Mortal Monday” ad campaign saw a teenager yelling out the game’s famous title line interspersed with gameplay. The commercial was very memorable for incorporating the game’s own quips, and the rush of the crowds eager to garner a copy. It also heralded the release of a single game on multiple different platforms. “Flawless victory” indeed.

#7: Bagel Bites Jingle
Bagel Bites


A surefire way to know whether or not an ad works is if the jingle sticks in your head. Commercials have been using jingles forever, and although we may not want to admit it, we all have at least one — or one thousand — jingles we can remember. Advertisements for Bagel Bites, a palm-sized pizza snack, permanently infused the catchy [“Pizza in the morning, pizza in the evening, pizza at supper time”] into the minds of countless kids and their parents. You’d hear the song on the TV and suddenly have a craving for pizzas you hoped your mom or dad had in the freezer. Even the legendary Meatloaf did his own memorable version of this TV jingle.

#6: There’s No Wrong Way to Eat a Reese’s
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups


The most fascinating aspects of advertising are the endlessly creative ways in which companies pitch their wares to us consumers. A straight-up “Buy our stuff” just doesn’t work, right? Well, Reese’s took a clever approach with their “There’s No Wrong Way” campaign in the late 1980s and ‘90s. A whole series of commercials showed us a plethora of ways in which the peanut butter cups could be eaten. Whether it’s with milk or when jumping out of water like a dolphin, there never seem to be enough different ways to eat this tasty treat. Ok, now we need to go to the store and pick up some candy...

#5: Miss Cleo


Does the name Youree Dell Harris ring a bell for anyone? Well, you probably knew her better as a TV infomercial psychic known as Miss Cleo. Back in the 1990s her advertisements for paid psychic services were all over the airwaves. The ads would showcase her reading tarot cards to people who had called, in an attempt to convince the viewers she was the real deal. As memorable and charismatic as she was, the entire thing proved to be a hoax. Eventually, the Psychic Readers Network she worked for was sued in multiple states for deceptive advertising and other charges. You’d have thought a psychic would have known to stay clear of these people, right?

#4: Taco Bell Chihuahua
Taco Bell


The late 1990s gave birth to another memorable line of ads from Taco Bell. Known mainly just as the “Taco Bell Chihuahua'', this mascot became the face of Taco Bell for years. Combining the ever-so-cute charm of a tiny dog with catch phrases like “Drop the Chalupa” and "¡Yo quiero Taco Bell!," these ads proved to be a massive success. Voice actor Carlos Alazraqui combined several influences, including notable cartoon character Ren from “Ren & Stimpy,” to create the dog’s voice. The campaign ended in July of 2000 after several Hispanic groups successfully lobbied the company to stop using stereotypical imagery for their advertising.

#3: Think Different
Apple


They may be an iconic and incredibly influential company now, but Apple went through some tough times in the 1990s. A combination of bad product decisions, and the overwhelming success of Wintel computers had the company struggling to find its place. But in 1997, Steve Jobs returned, and the company began the “Think Different” ad campaign, which helped Apple start off on a road to recovery. The influential TV commercial went over so well it even received an Emmy for Outstanding Commercial in 1998. Since then, Apple has been synonymous with producing products that have been “different” than the norm.

#2: Wassup?
Budweiser


Back to the brew. You didn’t really think we were going to leave this off the list, did you? Originally airing at the tail end of the ‘90s, this commercial quickly became a pop culture sensation. Countless television shows and movies who spoofed or paid homage to the famous commercials, originally inspired by a short film by the campaign’s creator, Charles Stone III. Even in the 2020s, new versions of Whassup? have surfaced, including one with smart devices doing their own rendition of the classic saying, and even a redo of the original, to remind people to check in on their friends during the COVID era.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Super Smash Bros., Nintendo
Not Every Nintendo Game Is Family-Friendly

Mouth-Morphing Gushers, Fruit Gushers
We’ve Never Seen Candy Do This Before

Got Milk?, California Milk Processor Board
Now That’s a Memorable Catchphrase

Collect Call, GEICO Direct
Bob Wehadababyitsaboy!

Another Scorcher, Sears
It’s Getting Hot in Here

#1: Cindy Crawford Super Bowl Ad
Pepsi


A red Lamborghini pulls up to a gas station, and a beautiful brunette woman steps out. A couple of young boys are staring over at her as she puts change into a vending machine to get herself a Pepsi. The boys are mesmerized as she takes a big drink and then we hear them say [“Is that a great new Pepsi can or what?”]. Cindy Crawford was in her heyday when this 1992 commercial hit the air and created a pop culture sensation on the biggest stage. It was even remade decades later. Of all the iconic commercials from the 1990s, this one stands above the rest.
Comments