From Mrs Claus to Buster the Boxer, television viewers have been besieged in recent days by retailers putting their 2016 Christmas ads on display.
Most of the hype usually surrounds the offering from John Lewis, but there is plenty of competition out there.
So strap yourself in, grab your popcorn and enjoy 25 of the best…
Marks & Spencer – Christmas with love from Mrs. Claus
The stalwart of the British high street has turned its attention to winning back its core customers by casting Mrs Claus as a stylish, festive, 55-year-old woman in its latest lavish Christmas campaign.
The advert by King’s Speech director Tom Hooper features a young boy, Jake, writing to Mrs Claus on Christmas Eve for urgent help to make peace with his sister, Anna, by replacing some dog-eaten trainers.
Mrs Claus sends her husband, Santa Claus, off on his sleigh before secretly turning to her secret lair, dressing in red and shooting off on a ski-jet and helicopter, named R-DOLF, to deliver Anna’s surprise Christmas present – a pair of new, glittering red trainers.
John Lewis – #BusterTheBoxer
The department store went for smiles rather than tears this year with a heartwarming advert featuring Buster the dog and wildlife leaping around a trampoline. Some critics have said that only passing glimpses of a six-year-old girl, Summer, and no reference to Father Christmas means this year’s offering lacks the human touch.
However, that didn’t stop a surge of viewers, parodies and tweets, with 82pc of viewers in the first two hours saying it made them feel happy, according to Brand Watch.
As one commentator pointed out, the unusual political events of this particular year have created demand for a more comforting message – and what better way to create that than a bouncing badger?
Waitrose – #HomeForChristmas
The upmarket grocer’s hopes of outdoing its retail rivals are pinned on a tiny robin. The advert tells the story of the red-breast bird’s adventures to return home for one of Waitrose’s mince pies. The food group has unwittingly pitted itself against sister department store chain John Lewis in a battle for the cutest Christmas animals.
Aldi UK – Kevin the Carrot
Aldi’s tongue-in-cheek advertising streak continues with its very own Kevin the Carrot character and an inspired retelling of The Night Before Christmas. The advert has the humble vegetable set out on an adventure before joining Santa Claus on his sleigh.
Aldi Australia – Nothing beats the perfect Aussie Christmas
Burberry – The Tale of Thomas Burberry
Meanwhile, at the other end of the retail spectre, Burberry has taken Christmas luxury to another level, spending an eye-watering £10m on its lavish three and a half minute film.
The Tale of Thomas Burberry includes a roster of British Hollywood stars including Dominic West and Sienna Miller and written by Academy Award-nominated Matt Charman and directed by Academy Award-winning Asif Kapadia.
Boots – The Gift of Beauty
Boot’s Here Come the Girls advert campaign was its most successful ever but was dropped in 2012 in an attempt to appeal to a more diverse audience. However, this year the pharmacist and beauty retailer has put women at the focus of its adverts again – namely celebrating the 500,000 that work on Christmas Day, and giving a few of them a makeover.
Argos – #Justcantwait
How does Argos attempt to lure customers with the promise of same day delivery on Christmas presents? Well with brightly coloured, ice skating yetis of course.
Sainsbury’s – The Greatest Gift, #ChristmasIsForSharing
Presenting the new Sainsbury’s Christmas Advert – a joyous Christmas musical created in stop frame animation featuring vocals by James Corden. It tells the story of Dave, a hard-working and devoted Dad, who realises that the greatest gift he can give people this Christmas is his time.
As the first snow falls, we find our hero Dave caught up in the Christmas whirlwind – all he wants to do is to get home to spend time with his family, but all sorts of Christmas duties and calamities are getting in his way. That is until he sees a gingerbread man on his daughter’s bedside table that they’ve made to look like him. That gives him a genius brainwave…
Gather your family around to enjoy this very special Christmas story. #ChristmasIsForSharing
Tesco – Bring It On
Asda – Christmas made better
Lidl – Homecoming | Chemistry
Morrisons – Morrisons Makes it
Mulberry – It’s what’s inside that counts
Heathrow Airport – Coming Home for Christmas
Myer – Saving Santa’s Star
David Jones – How do you Christmas?
Very.co.uk – Get More Out of Giving
Macy’s – #OldFriends
Harrods – A very British bear tale
Debenhams – #Foundit
TK Maxx – The Sing Song Commercial
Target US – Make The Holidays Spectacular