I am immune to the supposed delight of other peoples’ children, specifically the sound of the them singing. The sound of children laughing – heck, even my dormant hormones stir a little in their long slumber – but children singing? Genuinely horrible noise. Children are rubbish singers. And so it goes with this John Lewis / Waitrose Bohemian Rhapsody advert.
What have we got here? There’s some robots, some kids (awwww!) singing Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody, something about robots… it’s a spot of blah because John Lewis and Waitrose are doing something with their branding and everyone must know about it. The tagline interests me – “For us it’s personal” – because this advert has hit the airwaves, probably at some obscene price, just as John Lewis is sacking 270 of its staff. I’m sure the irony is not lost on them.
John Lewis, of course, is usually in hibernation at this time of year, waking only to spunk twelvety billion pounds on an advert in which a:
CGI / old / young;
person / animal / creature;
is sad / is sad / is sad.
When John Lewis ventures out of its natural Yuletide habitat its adverts generally involve children in some way, so to deliver a precision-guided arrows of consumerism straight to the hearts of weepy parents with crap drawings on their fridges, emotions utterly shot through years of looking after small humans and deep, deep wallets full of cash unspent on the nights out, city breaks and romantic holidays rendered impossible by enslavement to their offspring.
What else are they spend money on, but expensive and unnecessary kitchenware, expensive and unnecessary aspirational food, and expensive and unnecessary bed linen, straight from your friendly John Lewis and Waitrose stores?
And because this advert has a lot of money and a John Lewis logo lavished on it, people on social media are simultaneously evacuating their bladders, orgasming and weeping at the same time – as if they have swapped all of their mental faculties for one big gland that responds solely to emotions, pinballing from weepy mawkishness to an almost feral desire to spend £38 on a selection of herb-infused olive oils for that woman at work they don’t like.
So forgive me if I don’t join you in dabbing at your cheeks, getting slightly tumescent and feeling the need to do John Lewis’s job for them by sharing it all over social media. I know it’s not Christmas yet, despite John Lewis buying the festive season in 2012, but bah fucking humbug.