Our favorite modern winter and holiday ads

Every holiday, we love seeing the classic ads make their rounds in the media. The Coca-Cola Santa. The M&M’s running into Santa. The snowman being warmed by a bowl of Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup. They bring back memories of nostalgia.

Here are some of our favorite present day winter and holiday ads.

John Lewis’ The Boy and The Piano

For those of us who aren’t in tune with what’s happening in the UK, John Lewis is a chain of high-end department stores. And every year, their Christmas ad is highly anticipated and a shoo-in for ad awards. This years’ did not disappoint.

The camera shows current day Elton John at his piano, with an air of reminiscence. Each scene goes back in time to a younger Elton at the piano until the moment a very young Elton in striped pajamas rushes down the stairs to find his Christmas present. We don’t want to spoil the magic, so the next moments require a watch. Overall, the commercial emphasizes the power that a gift can have — a strong sentiment that’s often missed in holiday ads.

Google Assistant is Home Alone

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without Home Alone. In this clever refresh on the classic, Macaulay Culkin enjoys his time to himself and prepares for the burglars with the help of Google.

Audi’s New Santa

We know the spiel — Santa hoists himself down the chimney and eats the cookies. This commercial features Santa fawning over an Audi and being inspired to get into shape. He wakes up the day after Christmas to take a jog. Winded, he keeps on pushing. He enlists the help of a trainer to help whip him into shape. You even see him turn down a cookie and switch it out for broccoli. This commercial follows Santa’s progress wrapping with, “Progress is rewriting your own story.”

Don’t mind me…I’m going to head to a spin class now that I’ve been inspired.

Marks and Spencer Christmas with Love from Mrs. Claus

A supporting holiday star takes center stage in this ad by Marks and Spencer (another major British retailer). You see Mrs. Claus send off Mr. Claus with some treats and a reminder to not forget Australia. He is whisked away on his sleigh and the missus opens what appears to be fan mail. A little boy begins to tell his tale, but instead of asking for gifts he makes a different plea.

I love this one because it paints Mrs. Claus as a superhero in her own right, but also hits close to home as I too had little brothers who were pests from time to time but had their moments.

WestJet Uniting Through Tradition

“Christmas should be sent with the ones that you love.” That’s the story being told by WestJet’s Santa. Three different families talk about loved ones who they miss for different reasons but are all tied together by one sentiment — distance separates them from spending time together. I’ll leave it at that or I may shed a tear.

Nike Snow Day

Rob Gronkowski, tight end for the New England Patriots, is woken by snow blowing through the window when he rushes outside to enjoy the precipitation. From there, he’s met by athlete after athlete, all stoked to enjoy the snow day. It’s an outright blizzard wherever these Nike athletes are hanging out. The message? Get out there, no matter the weather.

McDonald’s #ReindeerReady

This TV spot advert from the UK shows Santa and his reindeer flying from rooftop to rooftop. At each stop, Santa (with some concern, somewhat gloomily) eats his cookies and reports back to his team that there are no carrots. At one point, he retorts to a reindeer’s side eye with, “I’m tired too, you know.” Then Santa sees a McDonald’s that saves the day.

Needless to say, we’ll be putting carrots out with the cookies this year.

Heineken Holiday Traditions

This commercial opens and looks like any old throwback, with a camera pan to dad, mom, sister, then wait — mom’s new boyfriend? It caused me to do a double take, but the ending message had an urban spin on an old-fashioned look.

An oldie, but goodie Hershey’s Kisses

It may not be modern, as it’s coming up on its 30th year on the air, but it’s the longest running Hershey commercial ever. It just wouldn’t be Christmas without it.

From all of us at DW, have a wonderful holiday and winter season.