NO matter how rough the action gets on the field on Sunday, when the New England Patriots meet the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII, the advertisers will be playing nice.
Most commercials that Fox Broadcasting will run during the game -- for which sponsors are paying record prices or close to it -- will be taking a milder, sweeter approach. There will be cute animals, at least one talking baby, an appeal to help fight AIDS, a talent contest, light-hearted parodies and enough celebrities to fill several seasons of "Dancing With the Stars."
"So many advertisers are promising to show their soft, friendly side," said Jim Nail, chief strategy and marketing officer at Cymfony, a research company that is part of the TNS Media Intelligence unit of Taylor Nelson Sofres. "Maybe it's because people are getting their fill of blood and guts in political advertising."