The Force was with TODAY Monday when the pint-size Darth Vader who has stolen America’s heart came to Studio 1A and tried to wield the same powers that seemingly brought a Volkswagen Passat to life in this year’s breakout Super Bowl ad. He had an early success in the makeup room, apparently turning on a hair dryer with a thrust of his hands.
The diminutive Darth’s efforts to channel metaphysical energies were more hit-and-miss when he tried to work them on a coffeemaker in the greenroom or on monitors in the TODAY control room — but 6-year-old Max Page’s star power couldn’t be stifled, even by the bulky helmet he wore.
Max’s Super Bowl ad shows him in full Vader regalia, struggling vainly to use the Force to start a washer and dryer, rouse the family dog, and bring a baby doll to life. But when he heads outside to work his magic on his dad’s 2012 Volkswagen Passat, he’s shocked when the engine roars to life — little knowing that his father has started the car by remote control from the kitchen.
This was the single best commercial from an entirely lackluster commercial set. It was absolutely charming and funny, and it introduced the Passat in a way that everyone will remember.
All the other commercials paled in comparison and many of them blended into each other so that you had no idea who was pitching what or they struck the wrong tone.