Mr. Peanut, 104, dies in Planters commercial released ahead of Super Bowl

A Planters commercial released, and drawing online buzz, shocked consumers by killing its beloved and ubiquitous mascot Mr. Peanut.

The commercial grabbed headlines before the Super Bowl.

In the clip, Mr. Peanut, age 104, plunges to his sudden death after the Nutmobile crashes. Mr. Peanut "sacrificed himself to save his friends when they needed him most," Planters stated.

As companies compete for attention and relevance in the digital age, experts said Planters successfully pulled off garnering attention before the Super Bowl.

"Brands like to do things to drum up attention," Diana Pearl, an editor for AdWeek, told ABC News. "They like to get people talking, especially when you make as big of an investment as you make within a Super Bowl ad. It's something that you want to capitalize on and keep people talking about it for much longer than just the 30 seconds in which the ad airs."

Brands like Pepsi and Bubly have pulled off similar stunts before, releasing their ad campaigns early to generate excitement. 

ABC News contributed to this report.