Friday 14 December 2018

#EltonJohnLewis: How the internet reacted to the new John Lewis advert

The ad, centred around Sir Elton John’s glittering career, has spawned criticism, praise and jokes.

(John Lewis and Partners)
(John Lewis and Partners)

By Edd Dracott, Press Association

Sir Elton John is the star of this year’s John Lewis Christmas advert, but the reaction to it on social media has been decidedly mixed.

The commercial, called The Boy And The Piano, features a performance of the 71-year-old’s classic hit Your Song accompanied by a festive-themed retrospective of the musician’s career.

As ever with John Lewis adverts, the topic was trending on Twitter since its release.

The end of the advert sees Sir Elton as a four-year-old receiving a piano for Christmas from his grandmother, but many claimed this was flawed as John Lewis “don’t even sell pianos”.

While it is true acoustic pianos are not available, a search on the John Lewis website shows that they do now sell a number of electrical pianos and keyboards, accompanied with the words: “Inspired by our Christmas advert.”

Others reacting to the advert were reminded by the recent social media campaign for Manchester United’s signing of footballer Alexis Sanchez.

The 29-year-old Chilean forward joined United in January and was announced to fans through a video of him playing Glory Glory Man United on the piano.

Fans of the new John Lewis ad included former MP and Strictly Come Dancing star Ed Balls, who said it was “totally brilliant”, and TV presenter Susanna Reid who responded: “Absolutely love it.”

However, others criticised the advert for not being “Christmassy” enough.

Some even claimed the advert was a thinly veiled promotion for upcoming biopic Rocketman, featuring Taron Egerton as Sir Elton.

The song choice was also criticised, with one user saying the retail company should have opted for Sir Elton’s Step Into Christmas instead.

“Ah yes, that old saying; ‘Nothing says “it’s Christmas” like Elton John’,” wrote Si Hawkes on Twitter. “Wait, what? If it was ‘Step in to Christmas’, you could get away with it. But come on.. Really? Poor effort this year, I’m afraid.”

This is the second time the retailer’s Christmas ad has featured Your Song, after singer Ellie Goulding recorded a cover for the 2010 campaign.

Others disagreed, and commended the advert’s message.

“The point is, a gift you might buy your child could have a huge impact on what path they decide to take in life,” wrote Twitter user Sue Harris. “Piano = a career in music, I bought my daughter’s first leotard at the age of 4 she is now 8 and her passion is gymnastics.”

Meanwhile one Twitter user spotted an opportunity for Christmas jokes thanks to the advert’s song choice.

“And you can tell everybody… this is ya thooonngg,” wrote Helen Gradwell, describing a scene of someone gifting John Lewis underwear.

Finally, there were those who realised the effect the John Lewis advert could have before it was even released.

“Any cabinet ministers intending to resign tomorrow should do so knowing that no one will notice because the John Lewis Christmas advert is being released,” wrote Charlie Peters.

Press Association

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