Christmas is fast approaching and with it comes a range of new festive adverts for us to enjoy. Ever since John Lewis upped their game in 2011 with ‘The Long Wait,’ Christmas ads have reached near blockbuster standards and left the nation in tears. This year’s offerings are no different and we’re thrilled to see that many of them have centred their stories around families, kindness and compassion. Having noticed so many parallels with our values at The Martin James Network, we’ve compiled a list of our personal favourite Christmas ads in 2021 and why they resonate with us.
With many people turning to Amazon for their Christmas shopping year after year, the company knew the pressure was on for a heart-warming advert. This TV spot deals with a young disabled woman struggling to enjoy the festive season as much as her unimpaired peers. This is until she receives a personalised Christmas gift in the form of a Prime package from her elderly neighbour. With a beautiful tagline that reads ‘Kindness. The Greatest Gift,’ this advert highlights how generosity can create unexpected human connections. It also sheds light on ever-present issues surrounding disability and mental health, even at the most wonderful time of the year.
John Lewis returns us to our childhood once again in this cosmic themed advert. After a boy stumbles across an extra-terrestrial in the forest, he adorably teaches her his version of the holidays. They deck the halls with Christmas decorations and form a moving friendship all the while. This youngster shows us how connection and wider perspectives can be forged by introducing others to different cultures. For an outer-worldly story, these messages hit home more than we expected.
This year Disney explores the joy and occasional difficulties of celebrating Christmas with a family that isn’t directly yours. Featuring a stepdad that’s eager to impress his partner’s children, this family man does everything he can to upkeep their Christmas day traditions. This stunningly animated short story teaches us the importance of prioritising compassion and children’s welfare in the transition from one lifestyle to another. Who knew that building a gingerbread house could have so much emotional value?
If getting hold of a chocolate advent calendar wasn’t stressful enough for kids, a Christmas talent show is enough to mount on even more pressure. But in this advert, little Laurie rises to the occasion and delivers the performance of a lifetime in the first Christmas show since 2019. Confronting his fears to reach his potential, the ad speaks volumes about what children can achieve with a strong support system in place. We also applaud TK Maxx for subtly addressing the negative impact that the pandemic has had on young people’s confidence.
The tale of Ebenezer Scrooge is a well-worn Christmas Eve tale, but Aldi has impressively reimagined it with their iconic characters. The advert emphasises the importance of being caring during the festive period and uses Marcus Rashford along with their charity campaigns to reinforce the point. Yet it’s their slogan: ‘For you to be happy, you need to be kind’ that brings their empowering message home and gives the advert more gravity than its animated vegetables might suggest.
We can’t wait to see more ads in coming weeks that embrace our commitment to fearless families and communities. Learn more about what we stand for as a network on our website here.