Have you seen the latest Olympics-themed commercial from P&G? Watch it here:

C’mon. How can you not love that? As soon as I realized I was letting out the same sniffle that is usually reserved for heartwarming movies (and onion-chopping), it got me thinking. These kinds of commercials are truly my favorite. The ones that tell a story. That touch upon emotions or events relatable to nearly everyone. And the ones that relegate the product or brand at hand to merely a supporting role instead of in-your-face hero.

I wonder if the brands that never do this fear that their product will get lost in the tale. To them, I’d say—make it really good, and it won’t. The only reason I know this commercial is from P&G is because it’s in the title and the last frame, and personally, that’s enough. I mentioned the brand name in the first line of this blog post, didn’t I? And because of the viral nature of genuinely moving ads such as this one, others will acknowledge it, too. In fact, I only first saw this commercial because a coworker posted on it on his Facebook wall (thanks, Mike!). As we know with any meme or viral object in the social sphere, once it catches on, it’s golden. We’ll forever refer to this ad as that “P&G Olympics one about moms,” don’t you think?

Another story-like commercial I’ll never forget is this Adidas one below, played during the 2006 World Cup—my favorite time of the year (every four years…). It spread like wildfire back then, I believe, because the story it told—a backyard pickup game featuring some of today’s greatest players—appealed so much to the audience. What soccer fan wouldn’t want to be those little boys? The brand, Adidas, was hardly the starring role, and no real benefits of buying the product were ever mentioned. But it garnered over 1.3 million views on YouTube, and today I still play that song (Jim Noir’s “Eanie Meany;” I Googled it back then).

You never forget a great movie. I think the same goes for commercials. Do you recall any other ads from the past that have moved you or told a story? Share them below!