close menu

Radio Shack’s Super Bowl Ad Loaded With ’80s Nostalgia

File this one as a contender for best Super Bowl commercial of the year: Radio Shack took the self-deprecating route to rebrand itself during the biggest game of the year. Worked for me. Oh, did it ever work. The store most notably known for carrying your most out-of-date technological needs (and batteries) realized that it could not survive on your father’s coaxial cable purchases alone, and has sent the antiquated business model back to where it belongs. And what better band of brethren to reclaim what is rightfully theirs than… the whole of the 1980s?


Not only are Dee Snider and Teen Wolf on the case, but so are countless others, including Alf, Cliff Clavin, Chucky, Hulk Hogan, Q*BERT (which… Q*BERT!!!), Dee Snider, and more. It’s a Where’s Waldo of eighties ephemera — after all, we ain’t afraid of no ghosts.

Which commercial was your favorite this Super Bowl? Tell us your picks in the comments.

You Made It Weird

You Made It Weird : Jennette McCurdy

You Made It Weird

You Made It Weird : Matt Mira

It’s Official: A Massive Shark (Probably) Ate The Missing Great White

It’s Official: A Massive Shark (Probably) Ate The Missing Great White



  1. Meg says:

    Jason Friday the 13th, Alf, Cliff from ‘Cheers,’ the California Raisins and Kid n’ Play,Dee Snider, Devo, Hulk Hogan, Sgt. Slaughter, Qbert, Mary Lou Retton, Teen Wolf, Erik Estrada-Frank Poncherello, Slim Goodbody, Bubo The Golden Owl from Clash of the Titans, Chucky (Child’s Play) John Oates-Hall and Oates, Delorean and Slimer. the chic in the gold and black outfit is a Solid Gold dancer. but who is the woman to the right of Cliff and Qbert, Cyndi Lauper?

  2. Tisiphone says:

    I love the ad, but what this means to me is that I will never again be able to buy a capacitor or resistor at Radio Shack during a project. They are becoming an Apple store with more headphones…

  3. KM says:

    Rainbow Moon Boots at :37 mark. 🙂

  4. DH says:

    I am actually happy my local Radio Shack stopped trying to be a mini Best Buy and has gone back to selling what I need Radio Shack for: Components. I am also pleased they started carrying Arduino and other maker supplies. If I want a TV I go to Best Buy. If I want some switches, LEDs, 100ft of LMR400 and some transistors I expect Radio Shack to have them.

  5. Karen says:

    The little girl on the dog roping the bag of Doritos.

  6. Kevin P says:

    At the 30 second mark.. Alf and… Oates?
    Looks like the moustachioed half of the duo Daryl Hall & John Oates.

  7. Jim says:

    Just missing a Rubix Cube.

  8. beau says:

    Did you actually watch the ad Carey Holzman? The ad wasn’t set in the 80’s…its at the present time and the 80’s came to take it back?? Its not that hard to understand…

  9. Carey Holzman says:

    The ad is inaccurate with itself, though. I worked at Radio Shack in the 1980s and dress code was a button-down shirt and a tie. They paid $3.35 an hour (minimum wage) and you were expected to own and wear nice dress clothes. Ironic that Radio Shack can’t recall it’s own past accurately.

  10. Elwood3k says:

    Dee Snyder, so 80s you had to say him twice at the end! 😉

  11. Marie says:

    This one was great! I also loved the Stephen Colbert pistachio commercials and the Jaguar ad.

  12. Alison says:

    Loved the ad. Unfortunately Radio Shack treated me very badly back in the 90s and I will not set foot in one of their stores. Especially when there is Best Buy.

  13. David Tuckey says:

    I had Loverboy in my head last night.
    Watched this again and he we go again….

  14. RichardR says:

    Loved seeing DEVO and Sgt. Slaughter- and Bubo the owl, Norm, Jason, Eric Estrada, Hulk, Alf, Teen Wolf, and (I think ) Grace Slick, Chucky, Slim Goodbody, Q-Bert, the California Raisins, Kid n’ Play, Mary Lou, and of course Slimer at the end…. what’s really bad is how I processed all these in a matter of seconds and knew who they ALL were. 🙂

  15. Brutus says:

    Great commercial!!! I like the time machine from Back to the Future at the end….. awesome!!!

  16. MatthewinCMH says:

    This ad plus the Full House reunion (without the girls, Thank Gandalf!) in the Oikos commercial? What’s next? Ricky and Alfonzo going to Blockbuster to pick up the Collector’s Edition Betamax of Punky Brewster? What? REALLY? Blockbuster is defunct? The don’t make Betamax tapes anymore either?

  17. JessieBe says:

    Not Kid N Play impersonators; those were the real deal. In unreal hair. Glad he’s not still rockin’ that flattop for real.

  18. NerdRage42 says:

    SLIM GOODBODY!!! I love how that’s the cameo people are talking about. I had his album growing up. Bet it’s still in my parent’s vinyl collection. *YOINK*

  19. Natalie says:

    I love anything honoring our military. ♥ Radio Shack’s 80’s was REALLY funny… that and the Cheerios one. 😉

  20. Aaron Grince says:

    Slimer! A.L.F.! Teen Wolf and a DeLorean all in coexistence? Best. Ad. Ever.

  21. Sillybird says:

    Thank you… Someone else recognized Slim Goodbody! I about died when I saw him. Many a health class we watched him. Sadly or nerdy, I still have his LP in my record collection. Lol.

  22. Jon Kerfoot says:

    The problem with RS isn’t that they’re stuck in the 80s. The problem is that they have stuff you can get elsewhere for less (or get better quality for the same price), they abandoned the traditional Radio Shack customer base in search of higher profits, and they (like other retailers) have resorted to the lowest common denominator for employees.

    On the other hand, seeing the Kid & Play impersonators was pretty cool. 😉

  23. Dean James says:

    Did I see Slim Goodbody?

  24. Matthew Gerber says:

    It’s just do DAMN beautiful! Watch it slowly to find all the extra ’80’s personalities in the background.