John Lewis's much-anticipated Christmas 2018 ad told the story of Sir Elton John’s first piano – telling us that to him, it was ‘more than just a gift’. For rival brands, the ad certainly was more than a gift and allowed them to revive the Christmas tradition of riffing off, or ripping into, Adam&EveDBB's creative.
Brands were quick to parody, undermine or hijack the campaign on social media just as they have previously with the 'Monty the Penguin', 'Man on the Moon', 'Buster the Boxer' and 'Moz the Monster' spots.
It seemed there was less fervour to parody the work this year and this could be a symptom of the ad debuting on the same day as Theresa May's Brexit withdrawal agreement – a document that dominating media attention after sparking numerous ministerial resignations.
Some brands tied the ad into that, others mocked the pricey production values or outlined that they also sell pianos – often at lower rates.
Check out how brands reacted to the ad that School of Communication Arts Dean Marc Lewis said had the power the "displace Brexit".
— JOE Politics (@PoliticsJOE_UK) November 15, 2018
Waitrose acknowledged its partner John Lewis' ad, by running work showing the public fast forwarding through the creative before eating cake. Read about it here on The Drum.
Twitter marked the annual mass misunderstanding on the social network that sees John Lewis, a US science lecturer at Virginia Tech University, bombarded with tweets intended for the retailer. Read about it here on The Drum.
Elves Behavin’ Badly
— Elves Behavin’ Badly (@ElvesBB) November 15, 2018
— Pizza Hut Restaurants (@pizzahutuk) November 15, 2018
— Lidl UK (@LidlUK) November 15, 2018
If it’s happening in that Christmas ad, it’s happening on eBay
— eBay.co.uk (@eBay_UK) November 16, 2018
— Iceland Foods ❄️ (@IcelandFoods) November 15, 2018
Coming soon... pic.twitter.com/Zdpz8sV3uE
— Poundland (@Poundland) November 15, 2018
— Frank. (@WelcomeToFrank) November 15, 2018
— NewsThump (@newsthump) November 15, 2018
— Suffolk Gazette (@SuffolkGazette) November 15, 2018
JOHN LEWIS MARKETING DEPARTMENT
Exec 1: "We start with modern day Elton playing piano."
Exec 2: "He sings Your Song as we travel back through his life until..."
E1: "We reach Christmas Day 1955."
E2: "8 year old Elton unwraps his very first-"
— innocent drinks (@innocent) November 15, 2018
the John Lewis ad but instead of Elton John it's this keyboard wizard pic.twitter.com/u25MPqv0gl
— Netflix UK & Ireland (@NetflixUK) November 15, 2018
How does ‘The Boy and the Piano’ square up against a decade of Christmas ads from John Lewis and Adam&EveDDB? Watch them all here.