Don’t Forget the Message

Where have those days gone where we can just sit and enjoy a television advert, appreciating it for what it is and not getting too hung up on its realism?

As a little girl growing up in the 80s, (and my mum and dad will vouch for this) I used to ask my parents to record the TV adverts for me between each cartoon I watched. I would spend hours watching them and still to this day, I remember how much of an impact they had on me. My earliest advert-related memory was sitting on my living room carpet, watching the Hovis advert.

The original came out in 1973 (ten years before I was born) so I’m not sure if I watched re-runs of the original or a re-vamped 80s version, but that’s not important. It made me want to eat bread, Hovis bread. I questioned what the music was and learned that there was music that existed that was nearly 100 years old. I questioned the voiceover and learned about where people with Westcountry accents came from and how far they lived from me in Swansea. I asked who the boy was and why he didn’t just get in a car to go up the hill – I learned about how not all families can afford cars as they can cost a lot of money.

Too much over the past week since the new John Lewis advert came out have I seen countless Facebook statuses and Tweets about how scientifically unrealistic the advert is. Being a blogger and obviously loving sharing my views, who am I to deny people of their basic human right of freedom of speech. If people want to humorously question the science saying “How can he breath in space?” and “the balloons would have been destroyed in the atmosphere!” that’s fine by me. That’s not attacking the advert, if anything it gets people talking even more which is great advertising – a cynic may even say that was part of John Lewis’ plan all along!

It’s the constant tearing down of the advert that gets to me.  …it’s sh*t!… What a waste of £7 million!… Nobody can escape commercialism… It’s too sad and depressing…

What are we teaching our young? Don’t get me wrong, I can be as cynical and jaded as the next person but this I feel strongly about.

Re the 7 million pound budget: Did you know that The John Lewis Partnership has invested £13 million on the community? Did you know that more than 120,000 partner hours have been volunteered for charitable causes? Did you know that 2,800 new jobs have been created? Not to mention their Community Matters scheme.

If you ask me, watch the Hovis Advert and take note of the slogan at the very end. It sums up my message to you all about the power of adverts and how they should still be thought of.

In my eyes, John Lewis have yet again captured public imagination whilst most importantly, raising awareness of Age UK.

I want today to be the day that a little girl sitting on her living room carpet, watching the #ManintheMoon John Lewis advert, questions who the man in the moon is and learns about literature.

She questions what the music is from and learns about an old band called Oasis.

She questions what that little girl is doing and learns about astronomy.

Finally, she questions why the little girl sends a present to the old man on the moon, and learns that elderly people living on their own can be lonely, and not just at Christmastime.

You’re right Age UK, no one should have no one at Christmas.


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