Minor British Institutions: The Christmas ad


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The Independent Online

The subjects in this space are generally selected with a certain affection, but today, as it's the Season of Goodwill, I'll make an exception. Can no one rid us of these affronts to intelligence and taste, these inducers of an invincible urge for the paper receptacle Alice is accustomed to pass?

Children of gruesome winsomeness in Stepfordly harmonious families; beautiful people selling scent and clearly in the grip of either an uncontrollable passion or wind; tired conceits featuring knowing looks from minimal celebrities, or proper celebrities who really should have more pride: all join with varying degrees of complicity in this conspiracy to take our money while playing on our wistful memories of Christmas past and pretending that their only concern is our happiness.

These people, all of them, are preying on us, naively sentimental fools that we are, touchingly ready to pay for a brief escape from a cruel world. Bah! I hope they all get socks.