More People Watch Doritos Spot Than Game

And the winner for most-watched Super Bowl commercial is…Doritos’ gym guys!

According to Nielsen, more than 116 million viewers watched the spot which featured two hapless guys attacked for stealing a bag of Doritos from another guy’s gym locker, making it the most viewed television commercial of all time.  

That’s more people than watched the game itself, which at 106.2 million viewers now stands as the most-watched program in television history, knocking down a 27-year-old record for the final episode of M*A*S*H.

The spot aired at 9:30 p.m. when tune-in for the game was at its peak. The second most-viewed ad was Audi’s Green Police spot, which was viewed by 115.6 million people at 9:26 p.m.

Interestingly, Focus on the Family’s controversial Tim Tebow spot, which sucked up much ink leading up to the game, tied Snickers’ Betty White spot as the least watched. But with both ads garnering 95.5 million viewers, “least-watched” is relative.

The much-analyzed Late Show promo featuring David Letterman, Oprah Winfrey and a chip-munching Jay Leno was seen by an estimated 110.4 million viewers, according to Nielsen. 

(The box below includes only paid advertisements.)

Most Viewed Ads During Super Bowl XLIV
RANKCommercialTime of Air (ET)# of Viewers
1DORITOS/Gym9:30:01 PM116,231,920
2AUDI/Green Police9:26:29 PM115,647,840
3ELECTRONIC ARTS/Dante’s Inferno9:15:22 PM115,063,760
4HONDA/Squirrel9:20:20 PM114,771,720
5TACO BELL/It Rocks9:27:29 PM114,771,720
6BUD LIGHT/Book Party9:32:13 PM114,771,720
7HYUNDAI/Built By Hand9:32:43 PM114,771,720
8BUDWEISER/Horse Fence9:15:52 PM113,603,560
9US CENSUS BUREAU/Production Mtg8:49:23 PM113,019,480
10E*TRADE/5 Babies9:33:13 PM112,727,440
Source: The Nielsen Company