uOPRA’s Top Five Holiday Commercials

Written by: Jocelyn Courneya; Edited by: Shanice Atkins-Broome

Tis the season for commercials!

While it may be the time of year that rouses dreams of snow and thoughts of family and festivity, the holidays also mark the airing of some of the best commercials and adverts you will see all year. From a vegan Christmas dinner, to German supermarket commercials that will leave you sobbing, I want to take you through what I believe to be the top 5 best and most underrated holiday advertisements. Word of warning: it may help to have a box of tissues nearby or a hand to hold for some of these.

  1. Ikea: The Other Letter

A commercial created for Ikea in Spain, this advert serves as a ‘holiday experiment,’ asking children to write letters to Santa, and then write a wish list to their parents. Typically, the children’s Santa letters include a list of various games and toys. It’s the letters the children write to their parents, however, this shows what these children really want for Christmas. Once the parents receive their child’s letter, they read their children’s wishes out loud. Unlike the Santa letters, the children ask their parents to spend more time with them, to play more soccer with mom, and have dad home for dinner more often. This commercial manages to be both heart-breaking and heart-warming, illustrating that the holidays are about much more than giving and receiving material items.

2. Edeka

Word to the wise, I would not watch this commercial in a public space, especially if you’re wearing mascara. A German supermarket chain called Edeka, may have produced the most powerful Christmas commercial ever. I do not want to spoil this advertisement with a synopsis. However, it’s message is both meaningful and clear, cherish the ones you love and always make time for them, no matter how busy your life may be.

3. Apple iPhone Christmas Commercial 2013

If you didn’t get a chance to see this advertisement when it ‘blew up’ the internet two years ago, it is not too late to catch up! In this commercial, Apple sends us a message about being ‘glued’ to our screens and missing moments as their really happening. Of course, the advertisement also showcases the capabilities of the iPhone in capturing life’s little moments. Somehow, Apple has successfully created an advertisement that urges you to put down your iPhone, while at the same time successfully promoting their product.

4. Hallmark: Vegan Christmas

While some may choose to pass Christmas off as a ‘Hallmark Holiday.’ the greeting card conglomerate manages to dominate with their production of a vegan family Christmas. A purely comical commercial, Hallmark shows humour through a generational divide, as a grandfather is completely puzzled over his daughter’s family hosting a ‘vegan Christmas dinner.’ The commercial manages to poke-fun at rising diet trends, while  still  reminding us that traditions can be changed to ‘fit the times.’

5. Canadian Tire: Sam’s Runway

Ending on a happier note, this Canadian Tire commercial works to remind us of the joy and excitement Christmas used to bring us when we were younger. This ad tells the story of a young boy named Sam, who is worried that Santa won’t be able to find him at his new house. Watching Sam write letters and make posters in hopes that Santa will know where he lives, ignites memories of our childhoods and reminds us that Christmas should never stop feeling ‘magical’.