Best Of UK Christmas Commercials 2015

December 9, 2015
by Tim Rabjohns

    Sure we’re all well versed with the polished delivery of the John Lewis Christmas ads by now – they’ve been doing it enough years that they have a good formula.  However for my money the House of Fraser, is the most interesting offering out there.  They still throw in some of the usual Christmas tropes of family meals and Christmas decorations, but the whole tone of this ad feels very modern as well. They also have a page on their website where you can “shop the advert” – ie find out about and buy the items in the ad – making it very easy for the consumer to interact.  It has bags of attitude just like the agency 18 Feet & Rising who came up with the idea.  Great song by Grace and choreography by ultra cool Parris Goebel – again all discoverable on their main website.

    Next up is Sainsbury’s Mog’s Christmas Calamity written by cult children’s writer Judith Kerr.

    Sainsbury’s have obviously learnt a lot from the John Lewis/Adamandeve crew and invested in emotional story telling – and by criminy at three minutes 20 secs you get a lot of story!  They also know that plastering product everywhere and saying how much it costs dosn’t work either – nostalgia and community spirit are the order of the day! Personally I just love the way Christmas is completely destroyed by Mog’s haphazard shenanigans and Framestore’s beautiful animation.  Also I’m very happy that they didn’t try and make Mog a photorealistic cat, like the one in the 3 Mobile ad.


    VCCP are trying to get the ASDA customers to “be more dog” in this new direction that campaign celebrates the ‘what the heck’ attitude during the season with a campaign centered on the hashtag: #BecauseitsChristmas.  At least they’ve jettisoned the interminable patting of the back pocket and price comparison type ads and created something where it looks like people are actually having fun.  Not sure I could hear Fleur Easts “Play That Sax” too often with out hurting somebody though.

    John Lewis 2015

    Yes, we’ve all seen it to death by now – and whether you are on board with the famous song (Oasis), the sentiment of crying OAPs on the moon, or sweet little girls with devilish balloon delivery skills or not – what all these ads have in common is amazing seamless CG skills at work. and the fact that it’s all UK based.  I’ve done no research to support this, but I suspect that other European country’s christmas ads do not look as classy as some of ours.  The ability to mix fact and fiction, live and computer generated is really at an all time high.  Past that, it’s up to these advertising creatives to pull their fingers out and keep coming up with new ideas, as pretty much anything is possible now.

    House Of Fraser Credits: Director:Ace Norton, Choreographer:Parris Goebel, Production Company: Pretty Bird, Ad Agency: 18 Feet & Rising

    Mog’s Christmas Calamity credits:Agency: AMVBBDO, Executive Creative Director: Alex Grieve, Adrian Rossi, Creative Director: Tony Strong, Michael Durban, Creatives: Alex Grieve & Adrian Rossi, TV Producer: Rebecca Scharf
    Production Company: Outsider, Director: James Rouse, Producer: Benji Howell, DOP: Alex Melman, Edit: Work Post
    Editor: Bill Smedley, Post Production: Framestore, Music: Rachel Portman

    ASDA #Becauseitschristmas credits:Creative agency: VCCP, Executive creative director:Mark Orbine, Creative director:Chris Willis,TV producer: Helen Brownlie, Production company:Moxie, Director:Neil Gorringe, Music supervisor:David Bass

    John Lewis credits: Agency: Adam&Eve, Director: Kim Gehrig, Production Company: Somesuch, Sound Engineer: Anthony Moore

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