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2012 Super Bowl Commercials: Sneak Preview (Update 1)

Tickers in this article: KO BUD GM TM HMC PEP SKX

BOSTON ( MainStreet) -- The Super Bowl is the biggest advertising event of the year, so even though the Boston/New York sports rivalry will be renewed, most viewers will instead be riveted by the latest commercials from Coca-Cola(KO) and Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) .

This year, 30-second spots during Super Bowl XLVI are commanding prices upward of $3.5 million, the highest total ever. Advertisers are shelling out the big bucks in hope of luring viewers in a contest of commerce that will rival the game between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots.

Over the previous 10 years, the Super Bowl has generated $1.7 billion of network advertising sales from more than 125 marketers, according to advertising data firm Kantar Media . The top five Super Bowl advertisers are, in order, Anheuser-Busch InBev, PepsiCo(PEP) , General Motors (GM) , Walt Disney (DIS) and Coca-Cola, accounting for $636 million of that total.

Advertisers are more than willing to feed the viewer hunger for funny, irreverent commercials. In the decade of Super Bowls that preceded this Sunday's matchup, the number of commercials has spiked 29% from 74 ads taking up little more than 36 minutes in 2002 to 96 ads running 46 minutes last year, according to Kantar.

Kantar says the average price of a 30-second spot this year, at an estimated $3.5 million, is up 59% from 2002, when a commercial slot during the big game carried a price tag of $2.2 million. Typically, first-time advertisers account for 20% of the Super Bowl ad lineup, although only three such companies have announced participation in the Super Bowl this year.

For Super Bowl XLVI, several key advertisers such as Coke and Budweiser return once again. Some companies, including GoDaddy.com and E*Trade Financial (ETFC) have already promised to tread over familiar ground, while newcomers such as Century 21 and Dannon hope to entice viewers with new national ad campaigns.

Here are some previews of commercials set to run this Super Bowl Sunday. We'll update the list periodically as more marketers unveil their big spots for the big game:

Honda
For members of Generation X, Honda's(HMC) Super Bowl ad is infuriating on many levels.

Its first offense is taking the premise of one of its beloved teen movies -- from the John Hughes canon, no less -- and applying it to the rote Hollywood life of its star Matthew Broderick. What made Ferris Bueller's Day Off so successful wasn't Broderick, Ben Stein's monotone or even, the city of Chicago , but its overarching theme that there's a big world out there for the taking if you're just willing to go out once in a while and get it.

Honda's commercial hits none of those notes. It gives the doughy, graying, The Producers -era Broderick a sick day from a film shoot that he fills riding a roller coaster, visiting a natural history museum (sans Dream Academy soundtrack), doing tai chi on the beach, going to the horse track and appearing in a Chinatown parade. It's laden with nods to Ferris such as hiding in one's own car and giving that car to a lead-footed valet, but dissolves into cognitive dissonance with one line: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around, you could miss it."