Christmas adverts 2020: Tesco’s festive offering is a tribute to the art of treating yourself

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Lauren Geall
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A woman eating a biscuit in Tesco's 2020 Christmas advert

We may still have quite a while to wait until the big day, but these festive adverts are already getting us in the mood for Christmas 2020.

Although it’s likely that Christmas 2020 will end up looking a bit different compared to the ones we’ve celebrated in the past, there’s one aspect of the festive season that will never change: our love of the annual Christmas adverts.

From Disney’s emotionally-charged tale of love and connection, to the fun of Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot, you can always count on the Christmas adverts to provide some festive cheer ahead of the main event on 25 December.

Last year, our favourites included John Lewis’ heartwarming tale of Edgar the excitable dragon (featuring a beautiful cover of REO Speedwagon’s Can’t Fight This Feeling re-recorded by Bastille’s Dan Smith) and Sky’s advert featuring the one and only E.T.

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Although we may still have quite a while to wait until the big day itself, some of the UK’s biggest retailers have already begun to release their Christmas adverts for 2020.

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at what’s been released so far. 

  • Tesco

    Inspired by the chaos that was the past seven months, Tesco’s 2020 Christmas ad is all about the little mistakes, white lies and shortcuts we took to get through this year, from lying to the kids that the tooth fairy is “self-isolating” to giving a loved one a rather dodgy haircut.

    Set to Britney Spears’ iconic hit Oops! I Did It Again, the advert declares that there is “no naughty list” in 2020, and encourages us all to get stuck into as many treats as we want this Christmas.

    Now, that is a message we can 100% get behind.

  • McDonalds

    Awarded the title of “tearjerker” on Twitter, McDonald’s Christmas advert follows the story of a mother and her teenage son.

    Despite the mother’s best attempts to engage her son in their Christmas traditions, her son is having none of it – despite the inner-child inside of him itching to get involved.

    However, after a trip to McDonald’s turns in to a family snowball fight, the boy warms up to the idea of Christmas, putting up the decorations with his Mum and even leaving out some carrots for Santa’s reindeer.

    Featuring a cover of the song Forever Young by Becky Hill, this one’s a real heart warmer. 

  • John Lewis

    John Lewis Christmas ad
    John Lewis Christmas ad
    John Lewis Christmas ad

    To find out what we thought of the John Lewis Christmas advert, and watch the advert in full, you can check out our reaction here. 

  • Barbour

    Following in the footsteps of its 2019 advert, Barbour’s 2020 festive campaign stars Raymond Brigg’s beloved Father Christmas.

    While last year saw Father Christmas receive his very own Barbour jacket (which he’s still wearing this year, by the way), the 2020 advert sees him helping a little boy to repair his Dad’s ‘heirloom’ jacket, after it was destroyed by their new dachshund puppy.

    Inspired by the real-life story of Dudley the Dachshund, the advert sees Father Christmas take the jacket to the Barbour factory in South Shields, where they repair it and leave it looking as good as new.

  • Disney

    Disney’s three-minute animated short begins in 1940, as a little girl waits on a cobbled street lit up by parols (Filipino star-shaped Christmas lanterns).

    Her father finally arrives and gifts her a Mickey Mouse toy, which, as the years whizz by, she keeps and passes on to her young granddaughter. Together, they keep the old traditions alive. But, over time, Lola (the Filipino word for ‘grandmother’) fears her connection with her granddaughter is fading – especially when the busy young woman forgets their annual ritual of sewing a parol together.

    Cue an upset Lola heading upstairs alone after dropping a broken Mickey to the floor. But, when she awakes the next morning, she comes downstairs to find her granddaughter has filled the house with homemade parols, bringing her back to her childhood in the Philippines.

    Her granddaughter then regifts her the cherished Mickey Mouse toy, now neatly sewn back together, and the two women share a heartwarming hug as they renew their bond.

    The text at the end of the advert (which, judging by Twitter, has left people crying all over the world) showed that the ad is Disney’s way of supporting the Make A Wish charity.

    Tasia Filippatos, SVP Disney EMEA said:  “Christmas is a time for giving and giving back, and we’re delighted to debut this festive ad campaign supporting our long-term charity partner Make-A-Wish®. Our goal was to tell a universal story that inspires through the themes of family, love and special holiday traditions. We hope that Disney fans enjoy the short.”

  • Aldi

    Supermarket chain Aldi has kicked off its festive campaign with an advert starring its beloved Christmas character, Kevin the Carrot.

    The first teaser trailer – which showed Kevin flying a plane through the mountains with his friend Turkey strapped in the back – saw things go wrong when Turkey accidentally ejected Kevin from the cockpit. 

    The clip came to an end with Kevin parachuting through the sky shouting for help as he floats down into the mountains below, as the hashtag #WhereIsKevin appeared. on the screen.

    However, the supermarket brand has now released the full ad, which shows Kevin joining forces with a slightly grumpy hedgehog and Santa Claus himself to ensure he gets home in time for Christmas.

    After flying through the sky ET style – with the blanket wrapped around his head and all – Kevin is able to make it home to his family, and it all ends happily ever after.

    Cute, right?

  • Walkers

    To celebrate ‘crispmas’ 2020, Walkers have launched a brand-new flavour of crisps to raise money for the foodbank charity The Trussell Trust – and they play a starring role in the brand’s festive advert.

    The advert, which stars LadBaby (aka, the guy who claimed Christmas number one with a song about sausage rolls last year), sees a group of carollers spreading the word about the new ‘sausage roll’ flavour through a series of classic Christmas songs. 

    With appearances from Aled Jones and Gary Lineker, the advert is certainly a load of fun – and we can’t wait to try the new sausage roll flavour as soon as it hits the shops. 

  • Etsy

    Although Etsy has opted for a series of Christmas adverts to kick off their 2020 campaign ‘Gift Like You Mean It,’ there’s one advert in particular which is attracting attention on social media.

    The ad, titled ‘New Guy’, stars a gay man who is nervous about visiting his boyfriend’s family for the first time at Christmas.

    “Don’t worry, they’re going to love you,” the man’s partner says as they wait outside on the doorstep, before the couple are welcomed into the home and presented with a gift from an older relative.

    “We didn’t forget about you, welcome to the family,” the relative says as he hands over the neatly wrapped present, which contains a personalised tree decoration of the couple which matches the others already hanging on the tree.

    It’s heartwarming, festive and oh-so-sweet – what more could you want for a Christmas advert?

  • Amazon

    Covid-19 has well and truly taken over 2020’s Christmas adverts, with Amazon’s festive offering featuring the story of a ballet dancer whose annual performance is cancelled due to the pandemic.

    The ad – which is a real tearjerker, by the way – follows the story of a young girl who is cast as the star in her ballet school’s winter show. Even as the coronavirus pandemic shuts down schools, the girl continues to prepare for the performance – making the most of Zoom dance classes and using any space she can find to practise. But despite her best efforts, the show is eventually cancelled.

    However, that’s not the end of the story. With the help of the local community, her little sister organises an impromptu show on the rooftop of their apartment building so all their neighbours can watch.

    And thanks to a rather powerful torch (purchased from Amazon, of course) the ballet dancer finally gets her time in the spotlight after all.  

  • TK Maxx

    TK Maxx’s festive offering for 2020 is the first advert to make reference to the coronavirus pandemic – and it’s all about how everyone deserves to treat themselves this Christmas.

    The star of the advert is a cute little goat, who strolls onto the screen wearing a rather fabulous designer outfit.

    Cut to a farmer and his wife looking out of their window at the goat strutting her stuff, and the woman – named Susan – asks her husband: “Did you buy the goat a designer outfit?”

    His suitably nostalgic and festive reply? “Yes, she’s had such a hard year. She bloomin’ well deserves it if you ask me.”

    It’s not Christmas without an incredibly wholesome advert, right?

  • Argos

    Although Argos announced that it would stop printing its catalogue earlier this year (much to our disappointment), the beloved ‘book of dreams’ is back for its Christmas 2020 advert.

    Featuring a new song by Gary Barlow, the advert follows the story of two sisters – Lucy and Daisy – who receive a magic set for Christmas.

    Throughout the advert, we see the girls shift from amateur magicians to expert performers, transforming their living room into a fully equipped theatre in the process.

    There’s even an appearance from a rather cute dachshund, who assists the girls in one of their most challenging tricks. 

We’ll be updating this piece with more adverts as they get released, so keep your eyes peeled for more announcements.

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Main image: Barbour


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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.

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