Ah, November. A time of joy, facial hair, commercial oneupmanship and retailers and marketers already trying to grease the wheels of consumerism with their Christmas campaigns. New Zealand doesn't seem to have been too badly affected by early Christmas fever yet, but the UK is already running a very high temperature, with John Lewis, Cadbury and a few others launching their efforts, many of them long-form.
John Lewis has gained a rep for trying to do the world's best Christmas ads. Last year it came to New Zealand and told a snow-related love story (here's a case study on how the retailer got the nation to 'cry and buy' last year). This year it's gone for the animated approach with a beautiful £7 million campaign about a bear and a hare. And, as a mark of success, there's already a parody.
Cadbury is also in on the act, with some kids who rip open everything in their purple town. Way to inspire looting and hooliganism, guys.
Speaking of which, what's this hoody-wearer up to? No good, we imagine. Oh wait! He's not a disaffected youth, he's found the joy of giving (and of buying from Boots).
Tesco has taken a familiar approach, with a recap of Christmases through the years and all the family dramas they entail.
Marks & Spencer gets arty with an Alice in Wonderland-inspired trip through sensible (and not so sensible) outfits. And, showing the importance of this time of year to such companies, there's even a cameo from Helena Bonham Carter (here's the making of).
Rounding out the UK supermarkets' offerings, Morrisons enlisted TV stars Ant and Dec to promote a bit of healthy excess with a cheesy song sung by a soon-to-be-eaten gingerbread man.