It’s that time of year again: the Christmas adverts have landed, a mini milestone for many that signals the festive season is now officially in full swing. COVID or no COVID, our favourite brand heavyweights are still battling it out for the Christmas ad crown – our Creative team take a look at who’s sitting at the top (of the tree) this Christmas…
Creative Rating: 9/10
Jade, our Group Social Media Manager says…
I’ll be honest, I’m an old school Disney kind of girl (early Disney is the BEST) so I didn’t know how much this year’s ad would resonate with me – a lot, it turns out! The ad follows a Grandmother named Lola and her close relationship with her granddaughter, and all the family traditions they’ve enjoyed over the years. I love the themes of family and togetherness – never more apt than in 2020. In usual Disney style, they pair detailed animation with an emotional narrative – all whilst weaving in a range of products from across all their franchises. Clever – it IS an advert after all. It’s a heart-warming three minutes that will leave most viewers looking for a tissue.
Christmas Launch Advert
Creative Rating: 7/10
Sarah, our Graphic Designer says…
I have been a fan of Kevin the carrot since he first hit our screens back in 2016, since then I have purchased both him and Katie Carrot in cuddly form the past few years. So, I waited in anticipation to see if he would be kept on the payroll for 2020, and I was not disappointed. Following on from the teaser which saw Kevin flying a fighter jet with a turkey before being ejected out, the subsequent advert then follows on as he lands in the middle of a snowy forest and begins his journey to try and get home for Christmas, of course making a friend along the way. I love the added touches in this year’s advert, such as the rainbow drawing in the window of Kevin’s home giving a little nod to all the hard work from the NHS in the past few months. It has successfully made me feel all warm and fuzzy and ready to eat a bucket of mince pies in the run up to Christmas Day.
Creative Rating: 8/10
Zoe, our Head of Creative says…
I love waiting for the John Lewis Christmas ad to be launched. It’s the start of Christmas for me. I loved Edgar, I always wanted a piano as a kid and the first teddy my son ever chose himself was the trampolining fox!
The pressure was on this year for them to live up to their promise of a “Christmas campaign like no other, for a year like no other”. I know it won’t be for everyone but I think they’ve really captured the spirit of 2020.
It definitely feels a big step away from the previous year’s glossy ads, but I love the “Give a little love” message behind it, and I challenge anyone not to have a warm glow after watching!
Creative Rating: 7/10
Yolandé, our Social Media Executive says…
Like many Christmas adverts, Amazon have focused on an emotional narrative as opposed to a product hard-sell this year. Titled ‘The Show Must Go On’, the advert follows the story of a young ballet dancer who, like many of us, has been directly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Highlighting the struggle those in the art industries have faced particularly, the use of a ballet dancer was timely and relevant given the controversial ‘Fatima’ ad that hit the headlines recently. Personally, I found it captivating and it really resonated with how communities have come together during lockdown to lift spirits and support others despite the everyday challenges we face.
Creative Rating: 8/10
Jon, our Videographer says…
Maybe I’m getting cynical in my old age, but when I sat down to watch the 2020 Argos Christmas advert I braced myself for the worst. I’m delighted to report that I was so wrong.
We open on Lucy and Daisy, two sisters, flicking through the Argos Christmas guide where they stumble upon a magic trick set. Gary Barlow kicks in with his single ‘Incredible’ as we settle in for ‘An Evening with AbracaDaisy & The Incredible Lucy.’
This advert wasn’t trying to be sentimental, it just wanted to make you smile. I loved the giddy enthusiasm of the actors, from the look of joy as a ball fell out of the bearded guy’s mouth, to fear on everyone’s face as they ‘cut’ the Daschund in half. Through delightful silliness, Argos managed to capture the magic of Christmas – I had the exact feeling of seeing Rudolf’s half-eaten carrot on Christmas morning. Hats off to you Argos, you’ve made me a Christmas advert lover.
Creative Rating: 6/10
Lauren, our Creative Senior Account Executive says…
Every year you know Christmas is on the horizon when the classic ‘holidays are coming’ advert appears on our screens, this year though it’s something a little different.
With the annual Christmas truck tour cancelled this year due to the on-going pandemic, Coca-Cola has launched an advert which tells the story of a father who goes on a journey from England to the North Pole to deliver a letter to Santa from his daughter.
At 2 minutes 30 seconds long, they’ve packed in quite the adventure for this father as he crosses seas, river and miles of snow to deliver his daughter’s letter to Santa. He arrives too late, but Santa (not the most convincing I’ve seen) saves the day in a branded Coca-Cola truck to take him home. Back home the father opens the letter to find that all his daughter wanted for Christmas was for Santa to bring her daddy home (cue the sobs).
Although this is a great story-telling piece, as something that’s hailed as being to market the 100th year Coca-Cola has advertised during the festive season, I do think they could have done it better and I wish I could hear those magical words “holidays are coming…”.
Creative Rating: 6/10
Luke, our Video Producer says…
When your company or brand are looking to shoot a Christmas ad, you basically have two options:
You pick a sentimental theme you feel is important and intertwine with messages on Christmas, family, good cheer etc. Or you make an ad that makes fun of the sentimental ads. TK Maxx strangely managed to land somewhere in the middle with their super short add featuring Lil’ Goat (no not the rapper) who proudly struts around in a new designer outfit.
In a clever nod to the year we’ve all been through, when the farmer is asked if he bought the outfit he replies: “Yes, she’s had such a hard year, she bloomin’ well deserves it” as he tears up in what is surely an Oscar-worthy performance. It’s short and fun and manages to acknowledge the current events without being overly sentimental.
We’ve all had a hard year Lil’ Goat, we all have…
Coming up top trumps for the Creative team for 2020 is the Disney ‘From Our Family To Yours’ Christmas advert, a heart-warming advert sparking our inner child. At the bottom of the scoreboard is both Coca-Cola and TK Maxx, while maybe Kevin The Carrot is past his sell by date…
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Jonathan North, Digital Communications Manager, UK Sport