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The Christmas 2016 advertising combat begins – BBC News

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Media captionJohn Lewis has finally released its Christmas advert. But what else is out there?

The battle of the Christmas adverts has begun, with retailers hoping shoppers will jingle-jangle all the way to the tills. But how will they capture our hearts and open our billfolds this year and which will become our favourite?

In the run up to Christmas, UK retailers are expected to expend 5.6 bn on advertising, according to Advertising Association and WarcData.

John Lewis, which launched its advert on Thursday, said it had expended a “broadly similar” amount to the 7m it spent on last year’s somewhat melancholy “Man on the Moon” advert.

This year, the retail giant said it guessed the public required something better upbeat.

Animal magic

Image copyright PA Image caption A cast of CGI wildlife animals, including Hallie the hedgehog, feature in the advert

John Lewis’s client director Craig Inglis said: “2 016 has certainly been quite a year, so we hope our advert will induce people smile. It truly espouses a sense of fun and magic, reminding you what it feels to give the perfect gift at Christmas”.

The two-minute advert tells the story of Bridget, a little girl who loves to jump, and her puppy, Buster the boxer.

After her parents conceal a trampoline for her in their garden on Christmas eve, a magical night time world comes to life with a casting of CGI wildlife animals – including Hallie the hedgehog, Sid the squirrel, Betsey the badger and foxes Olivia and Otto.

Gathering thousands of views on YouTube, the advert was met with mixed reactions. Linda Holden commented: “Anyone luck enough to have had a Boxer in “peoples lives” will simply love this”, while the more wary PersianPkmn said: “I would not want to be on a trampoline with a hedgehog just saying :/ “.

On Twitter, Barry O’Reilly’s photo of his “Welsh version” of the advert – depicting a cow on a trampoline – certainly did attain people smile.

Image copyright Twitter

But not everyone is happy, with some wants to know why Bridget’s parents – and not Father Christmas – are find putting up the trampoline.

A spokesman for John Lewis said that Bridget’s parents wanted to give her something special, that they knew she’d like, adding: “We’re sure Santa visited Bridget earlier in the night.”

John Lewis, a computer science educator from Virginia, US, whose Twitter manage @johnlewis is often understandably confused with the retail store’s, indicated Santa may have been running late, dropped off the trampoline and asked Dad for a little help.

Media captionVaults: Who are the band on the John Lewis advert?

Meanwhile, bookmakers Coral are already tip-off the ad’s theme song, a cover version of Randy Crawford’s One Day I’ll Fly Away performed by British band Vaults, for the Christmas number one. Lead singer Blythe Pepino said it was a “truly unbelievable experience” recording the sung with a 70 piece choir and 66 piece orchestra.

The advert is not to be confused with a video which ran viral last week featuring an -ALevel student’s homage to the John Lewis Christmas advert .~ ATAGEND

Smooth talkers

Image caption An overnight bag, with the voice of Ewan McGregor, lures shoppers with his ‘masculine physique’

For a third year, Debenhams is sticking with its Determined It campaign – relying on the voices of a slew of celebrities, including Ewan McGregor, Billie Piper and Jennifer Saunders, to help people find the perfect present for their loved ones.

McGregor, the voice of an overnight bag, waxes lyrical about his “strong, masculine physique”, while Piper poses as a bra who has “got it all”.

Feel good

Image caption Boots filmed the makeover of Christmas employees, such as this nurse, which it pampered as a ‘thank you’

Real people take the centre stage for Boots. The chemist filmed the makeover of 45 girls, whom it picked to pamper because they usually work over Christmas.

About half a million women sacrifice their Christmas Day to support their communities, whether as paramedics, firefighters or nurses, according to the TUC union.

Boots says “as a big thank you”, it wanted to give some of them an early Christmas present.

Though the ad is set to Kylie Minogue’s version of Rozalla’s Everybody’s Free( To Feel Good ), not everybody is thrilled the advert focuses on women workers merely. TUC figures show that more than 900,000 people overall worked on Christmas Day last year.

Christmas chuckles

Image caption Asda’s adverts show a series of humorous Christmas dilemmas

Asda’s line of attack is on all fronts – with not one advert, but a series of short adverts by ad giants Saatchi and Saatchi showcasing its food, wine and garb lines.

Showing a series of Christmas dilemmas with gentle humor, the supermarket chain says it can offer “Christmas made better”.

In one, a young girl garmented in white tights and sparkly shoes hovers over a tempting puddle but dodges it after a “don’t you dare” seem from her mother. “Toys worth behaving for, ” says the voiceover.

Twitter user Chantelle says it’s her favourite in so far, but it hasn’t resonated with everyone. Tina tweets: “Not splashing in a puddle to be rewarded by a toy. Implying puddles are naughty. That’s sad.”

In another tweet, Claire Underwood points out: “Why do you think Santa wears boots !?! “

Another spotted an omission in the ad series. “Only 1 person says #Please. Come on asda please defined two examples #Manners, ” pleads Ruth Parrot.

Racing heartbeats

Image caption Argos dispatches speed skating yetis for those who ‘just can’t wait’ for Christmas

In a bid to decide heartbeats racing, rather than to tug at heartstrings, Argos’s upbeat advert features 8ft-tall, furry, colorful, ice skating yetis who race to deliver presents.

The advert superstars five semi-professional ice skaters, including Peter Hallam( in orange ), twice British figure skating champion and holder of five international gold medals. It was shot on a purpose-built skating track in the centre of Warsaw in Poland.

Special effects experts from Animated Extras, who have previously worked on James Bond cinemas, developed the state-of-the-art costumes which each expense 30,000 to create.

Showcasing its fast-track, same-day delivery, Argos is catering for those who “just can’t wait” for Christmas.

They were surely first off the blocks for Twitter user Adam Raymont who said on Sunday: “I’ve just watched my first Christmas advert of 2016 .. well done @argos you are the winner”.


What has been your favourite Christmas advert over the years? You can share your best one by emailing haveyoursay @bbc. co.uk.

Please include a contact number if you are willing to speak to a BBC journalist. You can also contact us in the following ways 😛 TAGEND WhatsApp: +44 7525 900971 Send pictures/ video to yourpics @bbc. co.uk Upload your pictures/ video here Tweet: @BBC_HaveYourSay Text an SMS or MMS to 61124( UK) or +44 7624 800 100( international)

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