John Lewis managed to score its first chart hit with Ellie Goulding’s cover of Elton John’s ‘Your Song’, and it was the first to secure a genuine star name to its campaign.
You could call this the Love Actually advert, as it’s a compilation of all kinds of folks dedicating their time to wrapping up gifts for their loved ones. And it’s got a cute dog who really looks like he should be inside that house when it’s snowing that hard.
6. Man on the Moon (2015)
Last year, John Lewis hired largely unknown Norwegian singer Aurora to sing a piano cover of Oasis’s ‘Half the World Away’, and the ad cost around £7 MILLION to make. And they didn’t even go to the bloody moon.
The ad sees a young girl attempting to contact an old man living alone on the moon, and managing to send him a telescope via a balloon, with which he’s somehow able to locate her exact position. It’s made somewhat creepy when you stop and ponder why he’s been banished there in the first place.
5. The Journey (2012)
This might be our favourite in terms of the actual song: Gabrielle Aplin’s cover of Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s ‘Power of Love’. It was also the first to get to number one.
We’re not quite sure how the snowman a) managed to conquer fields, rivers, mountains, etc to reach Mrs Snowman and b) didn’t get there without Google Maps. But he did – ain’t that swell? We also love how in John Lewis land, it always snows and everyone lives in amazing homes that belong in a painting.
4. Bear and the Hare (2013)
Yes, some may say it’s a bit of a ripoff of children’s book The Bear Stays Up for Christmas, and there’s no way that bear would be friends with all those critters, but this made everyone feel like spoilt kids again in 2013.
It was Lily Allen’s big comeback at the time, covering Keane’s best song ‘Somewhere Only We Know’. It feels ultra Christmassy, and who doesn’t like some cute cartoon animals?
3. Buster the Boxer (2016)
OK, it may have lost the tearjerker element that we’ve come to expect, but come on! A hedgehog, a badger, two foxes and a squirrel on a trampoline?
It’s not too over-emotional and who doesn’t love a cute and happy dog at Christmas time?
2. The Long Wait (2011)
This is arguably the ad which got people properly excited for what the latest John Lewis ad could offer each Christmas. Featuring a cover of The Smiths’ ‘Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want’ (we doubt Morrissey signed off on that), it kickstarted the “Aww, isn’t that cute” era of campaigns.
A little boy can’t wait for Christmas Day to finally arrive, but lo and behold – it’s not because he wants to open his presents, but to give his parents a gift. Now be honest, have you ever done that? Sod that, we want our presents! Again, creepy if you spend too much time wondering what’s actually in the box.
1. Monty the Penguin (2014)
After several years of success stories, John Lewis turned on their Simon Cowell chip and realised they could exploit it even more by creating a cuddly character for kids to DEMAND their parents buy for them as soon as the ad aired. And thus Monty the Penguin was born.
As much as we want to hate the genius marketing scheme (the flagship store in London had hundreds of cuddly Montys on show the very same day), just look at the cute penguin! Tom Odell was on hand to cover The Beatles’ ‘Real Love’, and we all pretended not to cry at the cute kid and his penguin pal.