John Lewis Christmas ad mocked by people making jokes about Brexit

'John Lewis sell lots of cabinets. Just in case Theresa needs a new one of those today.'

Olivia Petter@oliviapetter1
Thursday 15 November 2018 15:16
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Elton John features in John Lewis Christmas advert for 2018

After weeks of anticipation, the John Lewis Christmas campaign is finally here - and the reactions are a mixed bag of praise, criticism and jokes about Brexit.

The short film, named The Boy and the Piano, stars Sir Elton John and takes viewers on a journey through the iconic musician’s extensive career, from the moment his grandmother bought him his first piano through to the present day.

It’s set to the classic hit “Your Song” and has been applauded online for capturing the entertainer’s immense talent. But other people have been less complimentary, arguing that John Lewis' ad isn’t quite as festive as its competitors’ Christmas campaigns.

Here's how the ad has been received so far.

In terms of praise, some viewers have said the film tugs on their heartstrings because it highlights just how much a single gift can mean to someone, particularly towards the end when we see a young John unwrap his present to reveal a stunning piano.

Others said it even made them cry.

“Just crying in the work kitchen at the John Lewis advert nbd [sic],” wrote one person on Twitter.

"Beautifully made," added another, "that song always makes me choke up and then cry a little".

As for the less favourable comments, people have expressed disappointment that the ad isn't quite as festive as they'd hoped, arguing that the only direct reference to Christmas occurs at the end, with the majority of the ad consisting of flashbacks of key moments throughout Elton John's career.

"It needs to be more #Chrisssmassy [sic]" wrote one person.

Others said the ad feels like an extended trailer for Rocketman, the upcoming biopic on Elton John which comes out next year.

"I’m sorry but John Lewis got totally played with this advert. They essentially signed up to promote Elton’s tour and the Rocketman movie in return for his appearance," one Twitter user wrote.

Another wrote that it was "essentially just a Rocketman trailer" while one concurred, adding that this year's John Lewis Christmas ad was their least favourite from the British retail chain so far.

Some people have said that the campaign won't garner anywhere near as much publicity at Iceland's Christmas ad, which was banned by advertising watchdogs for being "too political".

The short animated film was made by Greenpeace and illustrated the environmental damages of using palm oil in food products via an orangutan character who had been forced to flee its destroyed habitat.

British comedian Romesh Ranganathan compared the two ads in a tweet, writing: "Nobody hates orangutans more than John Lewis right now."

But one of the most prominent reactions to John Lewis' ad is neither critical nor praiseworthy, as hundreds of Twitter users poke fun at the timing of the campaign coinciding with what has turned out to be one of the most dramatic days in British politics this year thanks to multiple ministerial resignations.

John Lewis might be trending on Twitter, but so is #BrexitShambles in light of the news that cabinet ministers Dominic Raab and Esther McVey have quit their roles in protest over Theresa May's proposed Brexit plan.

Cue many many jokes claiming the John Lewis, like Raab and McVey, has also "quit", while others have teased that Elton John must be "furious" that he has to "share attention with a collapsing cabinet".

"My enduring memory of #Brexit will be how it buried a John Lewis Christmas ad starring fellow remainer Elton John. They were raabed [sic]," one person teased, referencing the former Brexit secretary.

Another added: "My twitter timeline is essentially 50 per cent Brexit meltdown and 50 per cent John Lewis Christmas ad. Probably fairly reflective of the country as a whole."

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