It’s been six months since the world lost Olivia Newton-John, but it was hard not to think about her when watching John Travolta revisit “Summer Nights” for T-Mobile’s Super Bowl commercial. In the ad running during Super Bowl LVII on Sunday (Feb. 12), John watches as a blue-shirted technician (from ‘Specfinity’) drills into his home. “Cable internet, what a pain in the –” he sings, but before he can finish the line, in pops his new neighbors, Donald Faison and Zach Braff. They gladly tell John about how T-Mobile Home Internet is easy to set up and “is like wifi that runs on 5G.”
From there, the commercial has all the glitz and hilarity of a musical episode of Scrubs. As Zach and Braff extoll the virtues of T-Mobile Home Internet, John starts to feel better. In fact, he gets more in touch with his inner-Danny Zuko (sans the slick back hair. The film version of Grease was released 45 years ago, after all.) John pops his collar, gets a little bit of the hand jive in, and seems to walk with a bit more swagger after learning about T-Mobile. He even hits a high note at the end.
“It was such an honor to sing and dance with John,” Zach said in a statement to Billboard. “Donald and I are both fans of musical theater, so getting the opportunity to perform ‘Summer Nights’ with Danny Zuko himself was beyond our wildest fantasies. John could not have been more kind and humble. Donald and I both took turns peppering him with questions about his many beloved roles, and he was so generous with his funny anecdotes. Donald had MANY Face/Off questions. I got to ask all about the dance sequence in Pulp Fiction. We had so much fun.”
T-Mobile’s entry to the 2023 Super Bowl Commercial field continues the brand’s music-inspired ads. In 2022, T-Mobile ran two ads during the big game. First, there was the Zach and Donald Scrubs reunion that saw them singing along to a home internet version of “I Feel Pretty.” Then, there was the commercial that starred Dolly Parton and Miley Cyrus, parodying every charity single of the 1980s with a song about saving phones from spotty and slow cell service.
The 2023 commercial, created by Panay Films, features John’s actual singing voice. He joined Donald and others for the recording session, showing that though he hasn’t been at Rydell High School in a while, he’s still got it. He also has the same dance moves, as seen in the 2021 Super Bowl commercial for ScottsMicarcle-Gro. John Travolta joined his daughter Ella Travolta to bust out a Grease-inspired TikTok dance.