The “#PhelpsFace” meme was born during the Rio Olympics when Phelps was caught scowling at a rival swimmer’s pre-race shadowboxing routine. The meme is now resurfacing in new promos from Intel that stars both Michael Phelps and Jim Parsons of the Big Bang Theory.



The Commercial

The ads from McGarryBowen and Intel’s Agency Inside highlight the speed of Intel’s technology, with Phelps making that famous face while watching race footage on a slow computer.

The ad was inspired by real-life Olympics footage, said Steve Fund, CMO of Intel. “We saw an image of Michael watching himself swimming during the Olympics on this very dated computer,” he said. “Our company immediately came up with the idea of; it’s the world’s fastest swimmer on the world’s slowest computer. #PhelpsFace was one of these magical moments that really stuck out in all the broadcasts of the Olympics. We were thinking, ‘How can we catch lighting in a bottle about that moment and do it in a fun way?’”

Parson makes fun of Phelps for watching the footage on such an outdated piece of technology by saying, “You have a new world record for the slowest computer.” He then points out why Intel is the superior choice.

Michael Phelps

Phelps is now retired but has appeared in many ads before his retirement. One of these ads includes Under Armour.


Intel was named one of Adweek’s 2016 Brand Genius winners in part for its “Experience Amazing” re-branding effort this year. The brand showcased the role of Intel technology in DreamWorks animation and NASA’s Space Shuttle. The new spots are an extension of that, Fund said. “It’s all about trying to connect our technology with the experience it delivers.”


If you wish to see the ad starring Phelps and Parsons click here.

Jim has a lot going on right now. In addition to this commercial being released, Jim will be producing two new shows with his production company. One is a hospital sitcom ‎and the other is a science fiction novel adaptation. There is also word going around that Parsons will have a hand in producing the new Big Bang Theory spin-off‎.

With all of Jim’s talent, I’m sure we will be seeing a lot of him after the Big Bang Theory ends. At least I hope so. The man is hilarious, and he is also a great dramatic actor as well. Judging by the size of his fanbase, I don’t think any of us will let him fade away.

So, what did you guys think of Jim’s commercial with Michael Phelps? I didn’t watch the Olympics, but Phelps is a name you can’t escape. Tell us your opinions of the Intel advertisement in the comment section below. Be sure to look for Parsons in all his other projects.

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