For 364 days a year, we avoid TV commercials like an obnoxious relative. We make fridge runs and bathroom stops while they're on. We use our DVR remotes to skip past them.

Then, when Super Bowl Sunday arrives, everything changes. Suddenly, we gaze upon them with rapt attention. So which of these ad spots, carrying a price tag of up to $4 million a pop, scored touchdowns? Which ones fell as flat as the Denver Broncos?

Let's go to the highlight reel:

FUSION CONFUSION: James Franco, tigers and jets, oh my. Still, Ford's big-budget spot about "double the awesomeness" failed to double our interest.

THE POWER OF CHIPS: Doritos has become a major player in the Super Bowl ad wars and they bowled us over again by putting a new twist on time travel. "Jimmy, is that you?" Imaginative, clever and funny. Plus, we love things made out of cardboard boxes.

A WHOLE LOTTA BULL: A spot for the Chevrolet Silverado gleefully flipped the script with a slow-build plot line that had a truck owner enabling a beefy bull to become one happy stud ("Hello, ladies!").

It made for a surprise twist, but bovine sex? Really, Chevrolet?

AN EPIC NIGHT: Bud Light had us doing a happy end-zone dance over its hilarious two-parter in which an average Joe is punk'd (with hidden cameras) into having his most amazing night ever.

In a "Hangover"-like flurry, he is led into a stretch limo filled with gorgeous women, has a quick styling session with Minka Kelly, meets Don Cheadle (and a llama) in an elevator, takes on a creepy-looking Arnold Schwarzenegger in "tiny tennis," and rocks out with OneRepublic.

Completely crazy and completely awesome.

"My mind is blown," he says. Likewise.

LOVE SHACK: Radio Shack gets credit for displaying some self deprecation -- admitting that they need to change their image. And we always get a kick out of 1980s nostalgia. This one had us pushing "pause" a couple of times just to pick out all the celebs likeMary Lou Retton, Hulk Hogan, Alf, Erik Estrada and several others.

TEBOW TIME: Thanks, T-Mobile. You figured out how to get Tim Tebow to a Super Bowl. But hasn't his 15 minutes expired by now?

TAKING FLIGHT: Who knew? Every time a Volkswagen hits 100,000 miles, a German engineer gets his wings. Not as effective as "The Force" (2011), which similarly channeled a classic film, but funny and cute. Clarence would be proud.

BEST USE OF A CELEBRITY: Wonderful Pistachios did a wonderful job with goofy Stephen Colbert, who had us cracking up. (Sorry, Yellow M&M, for one night you weren't "Ameica's faviorite nut."). RUNNER UP: Bob Dylan for Chrysler (and America). Still cool after all these years.

WORST USE OF A CELEBRITY: H&M and a naked David Beckham's tats. No creativity. No imagination. Been there, done that. RUNNERS UP: Bruce Willis and his hugfest for Honda. A commercial that just died. Hard. Scarlett Johansson for a SodaStream spot that had no fizz.

BEST USE OF FELT AND FOAM: Toyota Highlander obviously knows that you just can't go wrong with the Muppets. Too bad Kermit's friends had to share screen time with Terry Crews' massive, camera-hogging pecs.

ALL BARK, NO BITE: Audi probably provoked a few laughs with its canine cross-breeding "Doberhauhua" spot. (Didn't he look like a mutant Scrappy Doo?). But it was way too busy and the message — whatever it was -- surely got lost in the snarling frenzy.

On the plus side, the Syfy channel now has a great idea for its next low-budget creature feature. "Dober-nado" anyone?

SMELLS LIKE GLOBAL HARMONY: Forget Dennis Rodman. Ship a case of Axe body spray to North Korea!

Apparently, Axe not only wants to rid the world of odor, but of violent conflict. The men's grooming brand, known for making sexist ads in the past, caught us completely off guard with its provocative "Make love, not war" spot.

But, oh, if it was only that easy: Just squirt a little Axe on the underarms and everyone lays down their arms.

BOTTLE IT UP: We're not so sure what Heinz was trying to convey with its "Happy and you know it" spot. That it's blissfully easy to coax ketchup out of a bottle without incurring carpal-tunnel problems? That plastic containers make great party gags?

Moreover, how wise is it for a food brand to close out its $4 million spot with a fart joke?

BEST STUNT DRIVING: It was a hoot to see "Big Bang Theory" star Johnny Galecki race his Hyundai around explosions and through flaming hoops. But wouldn't it have been more fun to have Sheldon in the back seat rather than Richard Lewis?

MOST MOVING: In its first-ever Super Bowl ad, Microsoft commendably devoted time to inspiring heroes. They include former New Orleans Saints player Steve Gleason, who is now has ALS and uses a Surface Pro tablet to speak. Bravo.

PUPPY LOVE: Curse you, Bud Light! Pair a cute little dog with a Clydesdale (and mix in the mournful tune, "Let Her Go," by Passenger) and you'll get us every time — especially if we've downed a few too many Buds.

This feel-good spot is formulaic, sappy and predictable, but it hardly matters because it surely melted hearts in living rooms everywhere.

Contact Chuck Barney at Facebook.com/BayAreaNewsGroup.ChuckBarney, or Twitter.com/chuckbarney