Hey, SNL fans: MacGruber’s love affair with a certain cola may only have been the beginning. NBC co-chairman Ben Silverman says the Pepsi-shilling skit-mercials that aired during the Jan. 31 installment of SNL and again on the Super Bowl were “positive experiments…that helped to evolve the medium.” The soda company paid a premium for the three ads, which were penned by members of SNL’s writing staff and featured Will Forte’s bumbling secret agent. “It was a win for consumers,” says Silverman, who stresses that Pepsi’s investment actually allowed for more SNL content in the end. “Over time,” he adds, “we’re going to continue the experiment.” Might we suggest a Target Lady campaign?
In the meantime, the spots earned a big endorsement from ex-SNLer Jimmy Fallon. “I have no problem with them. They were the funniest commercials of the Super Bowl,” says the comedian, who talked to EW while attending the premiere of He’s Just Not That Into You this week. “It was perfectly funny and it was made very obvious that they were paid for by Pepsi and that they were ads. It was over-the-top; they were meant to be ads. I laughed my ass off. [SNL executive producer] Lorne Michaels is not stupid. He is a keen businessman, and I am sure that he made sure the skit-mercials ran during designated commercial time. Will Forte is a genius. I love MacGruber. Besides, in this economy, people need to get creative.” — Additional reporting by Carrie Bell