Controversial Christmas adverts - The Social Element
Christmas adverts

Controversial Christmas adverts

After all the heart warming Christmas ads, it’s time for this year’s most controversial. One that got its own parody just weeks after launching, is now a meme, and has featured in countless comedy sketches.

In an age where everything can be everywhere in seconds, it proves that parody – the humorous remake – is a potent weapon for fast-acting brands.


You might have seen the controversial new ad from Peloton, where a woman gets one of their exercise bikes for Christmas and goes on a surprisingly emotional fitness ‘journey’. The ad only came out a few weeks ago, but has received many accusations of sexism for its portrayal of the woman receiving the gift. Even affecting the company’s share value.

Peloton Ad


Actor Ryan Reynolds’ Aviation Gin company wasted no time at all, signing up the ad’s star to feature in their parody ad where she’s consoled by concerned friends with a cocktail (or two). ‘The Gift That Doesn’t Give Back’ has 4.5m YouTube views, has possibly saved the actor’s career, and no doubt shifted a bottle or two of gin.

Aviation Gin


This cheeky ad from IKEA was even quicker, when their ad agency spotted that a new $2,145 bag from Balenciaga bore a very striking resemblance to their iconic (and only 99 cent) FRAKTA bag. Their parody gave a list of helpful ways to spot if your bag was ‘real’. Does it rustle? You’ve got the real thing.



Back to Christmas and we can’t help but recall ALDI’s response to John Lewis’ Man on the Moon ad, where a young girl sends a gift to a lonely man. The parody made sure to point out the telescope he used to track his surprise delivery cost a fair bit less at ALDI.



And now for the original. Classic tear-jerking from the master of the Christmas ad. You really can’t put a price on quality.

Christmas Advert John Lewis

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