Waitrose has broken with tradition to poke fun at the headline-grabbing Sir Elton John Christmas ad launched by sister store John Lewis.
And in a tongue-in-cheek twist, one of the main characters confesses they preferred the department store’s Monty the penguin weepie from four years ago.
The 30 second Waitrose commercial shows a teenage girl excitedly getting her mum and dad round the telly to watch the biggest ad of the year starring the flamboyant popstar.
Thrilled to be sharing it with her parents, she’s recorded it so they can savour the moment together and tells them: “It’s really good – you’re going to love it.”
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But in a comical twist, as Elton plays the first notes of Your Song, mum asks for it to be fast forwarded and mutters “that’s good” as the ad skips through the scenes.
Not content she urges “faster” and the two minute 20 second video races to the end missing the poignant story of how shy Reginald Dwight aged four-years-old was given his gran’s piano at Christmas which set him on the path to super stardom.
The daughter looks on stunned when dad finally stops the ad right at the end with Elton playing the final notes of Your Song and enthusiastically asks “stollen?”.
The parents disappear to the kitchen to tuck into a Christmas wreath chocolate and orange stollen they’ve had their eye on all morning as Waitrose’s Christmas slogan "Too Good To Wait" appears across the screen.
As they devour the Christmas treat, they both agree they “love” the John Lewis ads as they are so emotional.
“Gets me every time” says mum, through mouthfuls of stollen.
But the final dig at the Elton John ad is yet to come when dad confesses: "I prefer the one with the penguin" and mum agrees as the daughter looks on horrified.
The ad was first screened at 10.15pm during the I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! break tonight (Sun) and is one in a series of six where the characters race through their tasks at breakneck speed to get to the food.
John Lewis has taken the ad with a pinch of salt and the chain’s customer director Craig Inglis said: “Frankly, it’s hard to believe our colleagues at Waitrose & Partners would choose a stollen over us but, as a big fan of the chocolate orange combo, I suppose if anything can trump an ad starring Elton John, it’s their amazing stollen – some food is just too good to wait for.”
And Martin George, Waitrose & Partners customer director added: “Fast forwarding their fantastic ad may seem a bit extreme but it just shows that nothing stands in the way of enjoying our delicious stollen.”
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Four years ago the story of Monty the penguin captured the hearts of the nation and had millions reaching for the Kleenex as the lonely creature yearned for a female companion.
Despite his close friendship with human buddy Sam, Monty nursed a secret heartache that he would never find true love.
But astute Sam – played by actor Rhys Edwards, then aged seven-years-old – surprised his best friend with the perfect gift – a female penguin called Mabel.
And in a typical John Lewis twist, as Sam’s mum looked on at the touching Christmas scene of the family opening presents around the tree, the camera panned back to Sam and the two penguins were revealed as no more than cuddly toys and only real in Sam’s imagination.
The ad saw Monty-mania grip the nation as penguin toys from the ad sold out with 24 hours of launch – and it was hailed as the biggest John Lewis tear-jerker yet.
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