Xmas 2017 John Lewis ad out

This year, it’s all about Moz the Monster. Hashtag: #MozTheMonster


Summary: little boy meets monster, fails academically due to immediate infatuation leading to poor time management and self care, turns life around after a mysterious Xmas gift intervention changes his circumstances.
A demonstration of utterly terrible parenting throughout, and quite clearly an analogy for the scourge of illicit drug use in adolescence.

But all’s well that ends well, hey?

The music is Golden Slumbers (yes, a Beatles cover), is by Elbow and is the best bit about this otherwise disappointing two minutes which allegedly cost £7,000,000 and 7 months to make.

Previous John Lewis Xmas ads destroyed on 6000 miles… may include:

2016 Buster The Boxer
2015 Man On The Moon
2014 Monty The Penguin

The problem with Buster and Bridget

The new John Lewis Christmas ad is out, and after Lunar paedophiles, lovesick penguins and Lily Allen musically narrating the unlikely scene of a hibernating bear being awoken, this year, we’re being given a Boxer dog and a trampoline:

This is the story of a little girl called Bridget who loves to bounce. When her mum and dad buy her a trampoline for Christmas, they soon discover that she isn’t the only one with a passion for jumping.

Without further ado or spoilers, here’s the ad. Have a watch.

Link to video

It’s lovely, isn’t it?
But, perhaps predictably, I have a few issues with it.

First off, the weather. As I’m sure we’ve reported somewhere elsewhere on here (can’t find it), you’re more likely to have a white Easter than a white Christmas. Still, it could happen, it’s just really unlikely.

Equally, it’s possible that a pair of urban red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) might wander onto an unattended trampoline and quietly bounce up and down for a while. Much more likely, however, is the possibility that they will shit everywhere and wake dear Bridget up with their incessant, irritating barking.
I’ll overlook it. It’s just an ad.

They are joined by a badger. The European Badger (Meles meles) is Britain’s largest native carnivore. I know that’s it’s not quite as big as a lion, but I once saw a contest between a badger and an Austin Metro and it was a close run thing, with both sides almost instantaneously losing quite heavily. When not lying under the crumpled front of small hatchbacks, badgers in the UK are known primarily for their scarcity and their propensity to spread TB. Nice.
European Badgers hibernate from late October to mid-November and emerge from their setts in March and early April, comprehensively including Christmas. I’m just saying.

They’re then joined by some Eastern Grey Squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis) – which are listed as one of the main dietary items of the Red Fox and which are diurnal – and a Common (European) Hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) – listed as one of the main dietary items of the European Badger.
But apparently it’s not suppertime. Odd.
How the hell did the hedgehog get up onto the trampoline? We’re asked to conveniently ignore this limiting factor. There are 4 legs on the unit in the advert, so it must be the Plum® Space Zone II 12ft Trampoline at £289.99. The mat therefore sits at ±80cm above ground level. For a hedgehog to jump that high (hedgehogs can’t jump, by the way) would be the same as me leaping onto the roof a three-storey building.
(And then not being eaten by the non-hibernating lion that was waiting there for me.) It’s implausible impossible.

How rubbish is Buster? There’s a improbable animal party going on in the back garden, including (but not limited to) several potential prey items – right in the middle of his territory and he is watching and almost imperceptibly growling. That’s it? What happens when the burglars come over the fence (using the phone box door as a handy step-up)? A little whimper? Pathetic. Get a proper dog. (Not a beagle – we’ve warned you about this.)

How rubbish are Bridget’s parents? (I’m saying this quietly though, because her Dad just assembled and then moved a huge, awkward 3.5m trampoline all by himself.) They don’t notice the miniature zoological carnival going on outside. They don’t notice their dog’s unusual (but admittedly near silent) behaviour. And they have their living room curtains wide open, despite the fact that it’s clearly FLIPPEN’ FREEZING outside. That’s not what happens in Britain. We’re not namby-pamby about the cold, but we’re not bloody stupid either. What of heating bills and draughts? No, these people are clearly not with the programme.
It’s almost as if this whole thing isn’t actually real.

Christmas morning dawns, and little Bridget emerges from her slumbers rather later than most kids would, and with more perfect hair than most kids would and hurries downstairs, ignoring her mother and father and heading out into her snowy garden and not slipping on the icy patio. But she is beaten to the new toy by Buster. How cute! And how weird that the sun moves through more than 90° to the north as we see the man walking past on the pavement, before returning to its original early morning position in the final shots.
This effectively means that the Earth spun about 6 hours backwards and then forwards again within 7 seconds. The consequences of this would be instantaneously apocalyptic.

I mean… really?

Look, by all means, enjoy this advert. By all means buy a trampoline at John Lewis for Christmas. But don’t tell me that this sort of thing could actually happen. It’s simply too far-fetched for words, even though I seem to have written 750 of them all about it.

Next year, I want something more down to earth.

Bah. Humbug.

Man On The Moon

SUSPEND YOUR SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE, for the 2015 John Lewis Christmas ad is here and while being a whole lot less full of penguins than last year, there are a few awkward stretches of reality that you’re going to have ignore if you’re going to fully enjoy this year’s effort.


Music is Oasis’ Half The World Away, covered by Norwegian artist Aurora (Aksenes), who will be singing at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert next month, along with some other Norwegian band.

And the advert is lovely and inclusive, sending out the right messages for the holiday period. Because, it’s always nice for a strange, lonely, probably harmless, but nevertheless ever-so-slightly creepy, old man to be able to stare directly into a young girl’s home, isn’t it? Especially at Christmas.
I wonder if her parents know about this?

She is, however, clearly a scientific genius. NASA need to sign her up right now.
Rigging up a telescope that size to be able to achieve that sort of resolution is something no optical physicist in history has yet managed. And yet she’s… what? 10 years old?, and is working out of the living room of a house in suburbia while being distracted by her brother’s XBox antics. Incredible. In. Credible. No, I mean literally, not credible.
And her package delivery system of twelve apparently ordinary helium balloons to get that telescope in a shoebox to him? That’s akin to the Rosetta Comet team landing on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. If this analogy is to be continued, she will come down to breakfast on Boxing Day wearing a dodgy shirt, and everyone will hate her and forget her altruism and seemingly impossible lunar transport system of the previous evening, and how she made an old man who can apparently survive without oxygen, very happy.

How did he get up there, anyway? What’s he been eating? Where did the wood come from to build his house and that bench? Why hasn’t an earth based astronomer noted his presence? Why does he look vaguely like a cross between a Galapagos tortoise and Doc Brown out of Back To The Future? So many questions…

And then, if we’re going to be properly pedantic (and hey, who’s going to stop us?), then “Half The World Away” would amount to a distance of 3,185.5km. That’s not even 1% of the distance to the Moon. Each party involved is going to be sadly disappointed by that sort of meagre effort, although I suppose Mr Green Cheese wouldn’t even know about it.

Look, it’s nice, it’s touching, but it’s wholly scientifically invalid and completely implausible. What are our kids going to learn from this?

I, for one, will not be shopping at John Lewis this Xmas.

UPDATE: The Guardian: Who is Moon Hitler?
The Independent (spoiler: it’s not): The John Lewis Christmas advert and the Commodification of Loneliness.

John Lewis Monty The Penguin Christmas Ad is… awwww!

After last year’s very pretty, hugely popular, but factually inaccurate, hibernating bear and Lily Allen combo, John Lewis had to work hard to come up with their 2014 Christmas ad. They’ve done well:

That’s Tom Odell on the music, a cover of John Lennon’s Real Love. And it appears that Monty is some sort of tall Fairy Penguin, either that or he’s been popping the growth hormone pills a bit. He might just have tall parents, I suppose.

Well, either that or he’s an Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae), but then that changes the whole romantic nature of the ad, because Adélie penguins are horrifically violent when it comes to sexual congress.

Either way, it’s another big hit for the UK retail chain and purveyor of really good quality Sony Bluetooth speakers (personal recommendation).

You’re going to love it.