Intel to air spoof for Super Bowl

The chipmaking giant will combine TV viewing and Web browsing in Super Bowl ads promoting its Pentium II chip.

Michael Kanellos Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Michael Kanellos is editor at large at CNET News.com, where he covers hardware, research and development, start-ups and the tech industry overseas.
Michael Kanellos
2 min read
Intel (INTC) will combine TV viewing and Web browsing in Super Bowl ads promoting its Pentium II chip.

The ads, which will air during the second and fourth quarter of the game, will follow the conventions of a whodunit.

In the first ad, the Intel Bunny People will discover that someone has stolen a Pentium II from an Intel clean room. Several clues will be collected during the ad. Participating viewers will then be asked to cast votes on the Internet for one of two solutions. Whichever plot line gets the most votes will be shown in a subsequent ad in the fourth quarter.

Comedian Steve Martin will narrate the vignettes as the detective, although he will not appear onscreen.

Ironically, this cautionary tale of workplace security partially reflects what life can be like at Intel. Former employees have said that Intel hires private detectives and other security personnel to break into employee offices to ensure that they are taking the appropriate security procedures.

The ad in the second quarter will run for 60 seconds; the fourth quarter ad will run for 30 seconds. The ads will appear in black and white and color.

Intel last year used the Super Bowl to introduce the Bunny People, colorfully dressed fabrication plant employees who listen to thumping '70s disco hits while working.

The Super Bowl, set for January 25 in San Diego, is often used as a stage for new ad campaigns or commercials. Apple used the NFL's championship to show its famed "1984" ad as well as the subsequent, and far less successful, "Lemmings" spot. The game itself will feature the Green Bay Packers and the Denver Broncos as well as a halftime show.

Sneak previews of the advertisement can be seen on the Intel web site.

Intel is an investor of CNET: The Computer Network.