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John Lewis’ 2021 Christmas ad is criticized for ‘waking up sadly predictably’

John Lewis’ much-anticipated Christmas ad for 2021 has been criticized online by social media users for “waking up pathetically predictably.”

The shopkeeper’s two-minute ad, titled “Unexpected Guest,” features a young boy introducing an alien to the Christmas traditions, before emotionally returning to her home planet.

It stars space traveler Skye crash-landing at the height of the festivities in the woods near the home of 14-year-old Nathan, who introduces her to the traditions of eating mince pies, decorating the tree and, to her slight confusion , wearing novelty jumpers.

However, some were far from impressed with the retailer’s latest campaign, accusing it of lacking “any Christmas spirit” — some even vowing to boycott stores.

‘Pathetically predictable woke up! Don’t bother entering your ‘remaining’ stores!!!’ one wrote, while a second vented: ‘Wake up more, as if we haven’t had enough. But that rocket is bad for the environment, missed a trick there! Great song though.’

John Lewis’ much-anticipated Christmas ad for 2021 has been criticized online by social media users for “waking up pathetically predictably.” Pictured, space traveler Skye and 14-year-old Nathan

In the comment section, one person wrote: 'Pathetically predictably awake!  Don't bother entering your 'remaining' stores!!!'  (shown)

In the comment section, one person wrote: 'Pathetically predictably awake!  Don't bother entering your 'remaining' stores!!!'  (shown)

In the comment section, one person wrote: ‘Pathetically predictably awake! Don’t bother entering your ‘remaining’ stores!!!’ (shown)

The soundtrack is provided by 20-year-old London singer and songwriter Lola Young, who plays a cover of Together In Electric Dreams, originally released by Philip Oakey and Giorgio Moroder in 1984.

The ad begins with Nathan, on his way home from school, seeing a flashing light in the distance and chasing it into the woods next to his house. Here he meets space traveler Skye and her spaceship.

The ice between the pair is broken when Nathan customizes his own Christmas sweater by adding a star and twinkling lights – just like Skye’s.

Viewers then watch Nathan help Skye discover the magic of her first Christmas and introduce her to some of his favorite festive moments. He brings her Christmas lights from his family’s tree, mince pies, Christmas movies and plays in the show.

The time comes when Skye has repaired her ship and must return to her home planet and the couple must be separated – and in the bittersweet, heartwarming moment, Nathan gives her his Christmas sweater, the same one he wore when she first met.

But many disagreed with the ad, accusing John Lewis of spending too much time getting a message across, rather than focusing on the joy of Christmas itself.

The ad features space traveler Skye crash-landing at the height of the festivities in the woods near the home of 14-year-old Nathan, who introduces her to the traditions of eating mince pies, decorating the tree and, to her slight confusion, wearing new sweaters

The ad features space traveler Skye crash-landing at the height of the festivities in the woods near the home of 14-year-old Nathan, who introduces her to the traditions of eating mince pies, decorating the tree and, to her slight confusion, wearing new sweaters

The ad features space traveler Skye crash-landing at the height of the festivities in the woods near the home of 14-year-old Nathan, who introduces her to the traditions of eating mince pies, decorating the tree and, to her slight confusion, wearing new sweaters

On social media, one person wrote: 'Time to boycott woke John Lewis' (pictured)

On social media, one person wrote: 'Time to boycott woke John Lewis' (pictured)

On social media, one person wrote: ‘Time to boycott woke John Lewis’ (pictured)

On social media, one frustrated viewer wrote: ‘Predictable in the current waking climate! Disappointing on many levels. No Christmas spirit at all! Total (continuous) failure of JL and their awakened advertising company this year!’

A second simply wrote: ‘Time to boycott woke John Lewis’, while a third argued: ‘Of course #johnlewis lost the plot. Even forgetting the awakened BS, to spend that money on having lost so much is criminal. Using an alien to alienate your core market? Not smart.’

Others, however, praised the Christmas ad, saying that John Lewis “never disappoints.”

“I see the #JohnLewis Christmas ad is gone and LOTS of people are getting very insulted and screaming AWAKE without context. Not sure why. Must come through the alien. Whatever you do guys, DON’T watch ET, that movie isn’t for you,” argued one.

A second enthusiast: ‘The John Lewis Christmas ad for 2021 has been dropped. They never disappoint. Love it!!!’

Another wrote: ‘I wasn’t emotionally ready for the new #johnlewis ad this morning. I love the #UnexpectedGuest concept and it’s a brilliant use of one of my all-time favorite songs, #togetherinelectricdreams. #johnlewis has done it again.’

The ad begins with Nathan (pictured) seeing a flashing light in the distance on his way home from school and chasing it into the woods next to his house.  Here he meets space traveler Skye and her spaceship

The ad begins with Nathan (pictured) seeing a flashing light in the distance on his way home from school and chasing it into the woods next to his house.  Here he meets space traveler Skye and her spaceship

The ad begins with Nathan (pictured) seeing a flashing light in the distance on his way home from school and chasing it into the woods next to his house. Here he meets space traveler Skye and her spaceship

However, others praised the Christmas ad, saying that John Lewis 'never disappoints' (pictured)

However, others praised the Christmas ad, saying that John Lewis 'never disappoints' (pictured)

However, others praised the Christmas ad, saying that John Lewis ‘never disappoints’ (pictured)

The ad is being published about a fortnight earlier than usual and comes as the retailer revealed that Christmas-related searches on its website are up 50 percent from this time last year.

The ad was created with agency Adam&eveDDB, with John Lewis refusing to reveal a budget but saying it was in line with previous years’ spending.

Buyers can pick up a version of the Christmas sweater Nathan Skye is giving – minus the added lighting in the ad version, as a nod to environmental sustainability – for between £14 and £29, depending on size, with 10 percent of the profit going to the good targets FareShare and Home-Start UK.

Each product in the ad is by John Lewis, with customers shopping for ‘key scenes’, including the decorated Christmas tree and dining table.

The advert will be aired for the first time on Thursday at 8.15pm on ITV during The Pride of Britain Awards after launching at 6.30am to members of the ‘My John Lewis’ loyalty program via email access and from 8am on the retailer’s website and social media channels.

John Lewis, Claire Pointon Client Director, said: “There is nothing more magical than discovering the joy of Christmas for the first time and enjoying your favorite festive moments with loved ones. After the past 18 months, we wanted our ad to really celebrate this as we look forward to a brighter future.

“We know that our customers are looking forward to this holiday season more than ever as they reconnect with family and friends. Through Skye and Nathan’s story, we celebrate friendship and are reminded of the joy of experiencing Christmas for the first time.”

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