Ahead of Super Bowl 51, Mercedes unveiled their Coen Brothers-directed, Easy Rider-inspired ad that features that cult film’s star Peter Fonda.
The minute-long commercial takes place in a Route 66 roadhouse where a batch of bearded bikers congregate to worship at the alter of Easy Rider as Steppenwolf’s “Born to Be Wild,” the film’s unofficial anthem, booms out of a jukebox that only plays “Born to Be Wild.”
The Coens’ knack for comical violence is on full display as the bikers cause raucous in the roadhouse until one angry motorcyclist barges in to alert his brethren that he’s “blocked in.”
When the bikers pour outside to see who committed the cardinal sin, they encounter Fonda, who’s now driving a Mercedes GT Roadster instead of his classic chopper. The actor then flashes a peace sign as he roars down Route 66 in his new vehicle of choice.
Earlier this month, the Coen Brothers announced they would spearhead a limited anthology Western series titled The Ballad of Buster Scruggs. The series, which navigates six separate storylines, became a television project after the brothers had difficulty condensing the story into a feature-film script. The Coen Brothers also serve as executive producers on the acclaimed TV series Fargo, although they aren’t hands-on for that Golden Globe-winning show.
Report by Daniel Kreps for RollingStone