Three Christmas ads that don’t give you indigestion

It hasn’t been a bad crop of Christmas ads this year even if, in the midst of new lockdowns across the world, it hasn’t always been easy to buy what they’re selling.

They’re eagerly reviewed (by all sorts of media) on their first appearance and judgements are made – as we do.

But which ones have legs, don’t drive you nuts the more you see them? Even if they interrupt what you’re watching. You sometimes wonder why Sky, for example, pays its football pundits so much when they get hardly any screen time at half time – when you’re actually quite interested in what they might have to say to say – as it crams in ads and trailers.

Anyway, here are three that don’t grate.

First up Wieden+Kenned London’s improbable mission for Coca-Cola, running alongside Coke’s ancient Xmas trucks.

We gave it a rather curmudgeonly 7, deserves a 9. Beautifully acted and directed. Maybe first time we were a touch jaded with the Xmas ad onslaught.

On a much less epic scale, W+K’s well-crafted reminded for TK Maxx works well too.

In the UK it may as well be a takeaway Big Mac for Christmas as all that stuff we’ve been buying will have to occupy the freezer until normal life resumes (how long does food last in a freezer?) The UK seems to have gone into international quarantine with its nasty mutant virus.

Someone with long experience of winning awards as both client and agency told me recently that McDonald’s’ UK ads from Leo Burnett are a modern miracle: a uniquely British tone of voice, over decades now, that presents the US fast food chain as a likeable pillar of national life. Actually it’s a massive corporation consisting of fractious franchisees.

The music makes it of course but the animation (a new challenge for the usually live action McD) is spot on too. As is the tone for these trying times, with nary a big beaming smile in sight.

Beautifully judged, encroaching on vintage John Lewis.

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About Stephen Foster

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Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.

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