An estimated 100 million people will watch the Super Bowl — some using the commercial breaks to refresh their snacks while others stay put, realizing that's where the real entertainment lies. With companies spending reportedly $5.6 million for 30 seconds of air time, they're really hoping you'll watch.

In its spot above, WeatherTech isn't promoting any of its products. Instead, it's urging people to donate to animal research being conducted at the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The commercial stars WeatherTech CEO David MacNeil’s dog, Scout, who explains how the the university helped save his life.

It's hard to top a talking dog with a life-saving story. But here's a look at some other commercial highlights from this year's big game. They're a mix of inspiring, somewhat sweet and a little bit silly.


Astronauts head to Mars and discover water in this SodaStream ad. Bill Nye the Science Guy makes a cameo as he reports on the big red planet discovery. But it's a bummer when one of the astronauts mistakenly drinks the Mars water. The commercial ends with an environmental message about eliminating plastic.


In Kia's commercial, Josh Jacobs of the Oakland Raiders has an inspirational conversation with his younger self. His motivational pep talk is especially meaningful when you realize that Jacobs was homeless for parts of his childhood. The spot shines a light on youth homelessness.


OK, so maybe grab a tissue for this commercial in which an elderly man reminisces about the love of his life with a little help from Google.


"Is there enough space ... in space ... for women?" That's what Katie Couric asks for Olay when an all-female crew of astronauts rockets into space. "Who wrote that? Are people really still asking that question?” she says. The spot stars Busy Philipps, YouTube star Lilly Singh, Taraji P. Henson and retired NASA astronaut Nicole Stott.


Maybe we really can solve all the world's problems — like grown men riding scooters and tech devices that snoop on your conversations — by feeding the planet a giant Snickers bar.


Microsoft's spot tells the story of Katie Sowers, an assistant coach for the San Francisco 49ers, who's making history as the first woman to ever coach in the Super Bowl.


If you haven't heard "Old Town Road" 8 zillion times this year, then you have actively avoided social media, all music and probably even elevators. For the Super Bowl, Lil Nas X and Sam Elliott have a dance battle over a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos. And even Billy Ray Cyrus makes a cameo.

Mary Jo DiLonardo covers a wide range of topics focused on nature, health, science and anything that helps make the world a better place.

8 Super Bowl commercials to keep the game interesting
These sweet, inspiring and silly commercials are Super Bowl stars.