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Like brussels sprouts, paper hats and that John Lennon song, the Christmas advert has become a staple of the holiday season. Let’s take a look at some of this year’s most memorable, past and present.
It never hurts to tug at the heartstrings over Christmas. John Lewis seems to think so. This year’s advert does just that, telling the sweet story of a girl trying to reach a lonely old man on the moon.
Once you ignore its bigger leaps in logic it’s a simple yet touching idea, and it’s racked up over 19 million views on the official video. Previous adverts from the company have evoked similiar themes of companionship. Who could forget Monty the penguin, and a hare concerned about his friend missing the festivities?
Not to be confused with the witch’s familiar. Mog starred in a series of books written by Judith Kerr, who is also known for The Tiger who Came to Tea. The clumsy cat actually died of old age in the series’ last instalment, published in 2002. Luckily, she seems to have bounced back for this year’s Sainsbury’s advert. With over 18 million views on Youtube the video is a hit, and seems to have skirted the controversy the supermarket’s previous advert attracted from some viewers.
Sainsburys have had a pretty wide range of approaches to their Christmas adverts. Their 2013 effort takes a more naturalistic approach, bringing together footage from a range of family Christmases. Make sure you watch to the end!
A slightly more exhilarating advert, Argos’ ad highlights its rapid delivery service. It’s also pretty impressive to look at, featuring scores of people racing down a snowy mountainside… and some of the biggest holiday gifts conveniently appearing in-shot.
It’s interesting to compare the Argos advert to something like this one, released in 1983. Today’s adverts prioritise certain products, services, or a more general spirit of Christmas. This one is a little more explicit in regards to the great bargains you can get. Though Woolworths has sadly left us, its brilliant offers (and pick ‘n’ mix) live on in our memories.
Today, we treat the Christmas advert as an event in itself. Still, there’s something to be said for brevity. Just 19 seconds long, Yellow Pages aren’t afraid to poke fun at themselves with an unusual use for their directory.
Giftface is something we’ve all weathered: that frozen, false smile upon receipt of a terrible present. Thankfully, Harvey Nichols is on hand to help us out, with this chuckleworthy advert. Whether someone would really gift a Latin-English dictionary remains to be seen, but the advert nicely captures that awkward, uncomfortable moment upon receipt of a bad gift.
John Lewis’ advert might have won brownie points for its depiction of a lonely old man. But German supermarket Edeka brings that idea down to earth, with a man spending one too many Christmases alone. A surprisingly grounded piece of work, the ad has been incredibly popular, and has reached over 25 million views on Youtube.
No prizes for guessing what this was inspired by. Still, when it comes to spoofing Christmas characters, Aldi’s late to the party. In 2006 drinks company Irn-Bru released this delightful send-up of The Snowman, which sees its plucky young boy meet a rather different end.
Got any adverts you think we’ve missed? Be sure to let us know in the comments!