John Lewis's latest xmas heartwarmer
The John Lewis Christmas ad is fast becoming a British advertising institution. This year's effort features a snowman on an epic quest to buy the perfect present. Guess where he finds it?
You know how the formula by now. As with previous John Lewis spots, The Journey combines a cover version of a classic track (in this case Frankie Goes to Hollywood's The Power Of Love covered by 20 year-old Gabrielle Aplin) with a hefty dose of yuletide sentimentality. Once again, agency Adam & Eve/DDB have turned to director Dougal Wilson to deliver all this – Wilson directed last year's spot and the brand's Always A Woman ad.
It's all rather sweet and Wilson has the knack of pitching this sort of thing just on the right side of cloying, but somehow it lacks the emotional pull of last year's The Long Wait which transfixed a teary-eyed nation – while the harder of heart had great fun imagining just what was in the little lad's gift to his parents...
CR for the iPad
Read in-depth features and analysis plus exclusive iPad-only content in the Creative Review iPad App. Longer, more in-depth features than we run on the blog, portfolios of great, full-screen images and hi-res video. If the blog is about news, comment and debate, the iPad is about inspiration, viewing and reading. As well as providing exclusive, iPad-only content, the app will also update with new content throughout each month. Try a free sample issue here.
CR In print
In our November issue we look at ad agency Wieden + Kennedy in a major feature as it celebrates its 30th anniversary; examine the practice of and a new monograph on M/M (Paris); investigate GOV.UK, the first major project from the Government Digital Service; explore why Kraftwerk appeals so much to designers; and ponder the future of Instagram. Rick Poynor reviews the Phaidon Archive of Graphic Design; Jeremy Leslie takes in a new exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery dedicated to experimental magazine, Aspen; Mark Sinclair explores Birmingham's Ikon Gallery show of work by the late graphic designer, Tony Arefin; while Daniel Benneworth-Gray writes about going freelance; and Michael Evamy looks at new telecommunications brand EE's identity. Plus, subscribers also receive Monograph in which Tim Sumner of tohave-and-tohold.co.uk dips into Preston Polytechnic's ephemera archive to pick out a selection of printed paper retail bags from the 70s and 80s.
The issue also doubles up as the Photography Annual 2012 – our showcase of the best images in commercial photography produced over the last year. The work selected is as strong as ever, with photographs by the likes of Tim Flach (whose image of a hairless chimp adorns the front cover of the issue, above); Nadav Kander (whose shot of actor Mark Rylance is our Photography Annual cover); Martin Usborne; Peter Lippmann; Giles Revell and more.
Please note, CR now has a limited presence on the newsstand at WH Smith high street stores (although it can still be found in WH Smith travel branches at train stations and airports). If you cannot find a copy of CR in your town, your WH Smith store or a local independent newsagent can order it for you. You can search for your nearest stockist here. Alternatively, call us on 020 7970 4878 to buy a copy direct from us. Based outside the UK? Simply call +44(0)207 970 4878 to find your nearest stockist. Better yet, subscribe to CR for a year here and save yourself almost 30% on the printed magazine.
Two years ago, DDB in New Zealand created a wonderful ad for New Zealand Lotto, featuring Wilson the dog who travels a *very* similar journey to this snowman. The Lotto ad worked wonderfully, but to see it re-worked - almost frame by frame - in this ad for John Lewis is a surprise!
Have you seen the scary version?
You mean this one? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PyNrt1nY7P8
'Almost frame by frame'? That's a massive exaggeration. They both draw on very familiar ideas of 'the journey' which we've seen in countless films - that's the point surely? If you're going to claim the John Lewis ad 're-worked' Lotto, what about the obvious debt the Lotto ad owes to the epic journey of Baxter the dog in Anchorman, which was itself a knowing parody of such sequences in previous films?
Love the scary version!
I think it's great and would love to see a 'making of' for it. Nice track too. I must be getting soft with age or something!
Seem's a bit too familiar from last year's (which I prefer) in terms of the production/soundtrack etc but still a lovely festive story. John Lewis is definitely becoming the annual ad that gets everyone talking
|Eley Kishimoto graffiti at Brixton tube station (2)|
|What would a UK flag look like without Scotland? (43)|
|Intense new Jonathan Glazer ad for Canon (6)|
|New Jeanette Winterson covers from Vintage (7)|
|The House of Vans opens in London's Old Vic Tunnels (13)|
|What would a UK flag look like without Scotland?|
|A2 & New North Press’ 3D-printed letterpress font|
|If illustrators designed football shirts...|
|What makes a great image? CR's Photo Annual judge Gemma Fletcher shares her favourite work|