David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

John Lewis
"And/Or"
60s
20 March 2017
UK Department Stores

John Lewis have created their own in-house denim and lifestyle brand, And/Or - and here's the ad that launches it. 'Denim Born of LA' seems to be aimed at 20-somethings who see themselves as sexy, sassy and independent but who may not have considered John Lewis their first port of call for fashion.

It's beautifully shot and has a refrigerator-cool vibe. A young mum breastfeeding, a trans woman and multi-racial models are included in the mix of denim wearers, although the spot focuses mainly on a slim white woman who likes a pretty bra.

Considering the clothing collection is inspired by places in Los Angeles, it's an interesting choice to use Jain's 'Makeba' as the soundtrack. It's a terrific song and its vibrant rhythm gives extra energy to the ad, but its strong African influence doesn't really evoke the city, even allowing for the 'City of Angels' being a cultural melting pot.

Still, And/Or works hard in its suggestion that it offers lots of ways to put a look together and it has bags of attitude.


Co-op Supermarkets
"Mother's Day"

Gary said:

Beautifully done - looks and feels totally believable without being too sentimental.


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John Lewis
"And/Or"
60s
20 Mar 2017
John Lewis have created their own in-house denim and lifestyle brand, And/Or - and here's the ad that launches it. 'Denim Born of LA' seems to be aimed at 20-somethings who see themselves as sexy, sassy and independent but who may not have considered John Lewis their first port of call for fashion.

John Lewis
"Bounce"
30s
9 Nov 2016
After last week's false alarm, John Lewis have delivered up a bona fide teaser. Via the Twitter handle @bouncing2016, the department store introduces a girl jumping around while her pooch looks up... and down... and up... and down. It's already looking like this year's festive showpiece is a more earthbound one. Not long now, folks!

John Lewis
"Buster the Boxer"
2 mins
10 Nov 2016
As the world reels in revulsion at the decision to put Donald Trump in The White House, one wise Twitter user summed up the mood of the nation. Philip Westerman used the social media platform to say: "The John Lewis Christmas advert better be fucking spectacular". Well, we've got news for you, Mr Westerman... for the next two minutes, everything's going to be all right because it is "fucking spectacular".

John Lewis
"Man on the Moon"
2 mins
6 Nov 2015
The anticipation ahead of the John Lewis Christmas commercial grows and grows and this year it's been so great that the backlash began before anyone had even seen it. Those silly naysayers have - as you might expect - just been completely trumped by the film itself which is unerringly beautiful.

John Lewis
"On The Moon"
10s
4 Nov 2015
This is a tiny teaser to whet our appetite for the main event. What's with the intriguing glimpse of the moon through the telescope? And once we know, this becomes an emotive reminder of all that the John Lewis Christmas ad stands for this year - bringing love and company into lives that inadvertently pass us by, as remote and silent as our eternal satellite.

John Lewis
"Tiny Dancer"
90s
21 Aug 2015
In a performance worthy of Abigail Breslin in Little Miss Sunshine, a young girl dances her heart out around the house. In her mind important folk from the Royal Ballet are secretly watching and whispering: "Who is this gifted creature? We must have her for our very own." In reality, she's merely fortunate to have parents with home insurance that indemnifies the resultsof her more enthusiastic moves.

John Lewis
"Monty the Penguin"
2 mins
6 Nov 2014
A remarkable aspect of the John Lewis Christmas phenomenon is the way adam&eveDDB take the annual anticipation in their stride and make it work totally to the advantage of the brand. Fulfilling expectations after success is so difficult we even have a name for it - that "difficult second album syndrome" - but this Christmas institution is already onto its sixth album and there's no sense of any difficulty in maintaining the quality. Indeed, this year's may be the best yet.

John Lewis
"Christmas Ad Teaser"
10s
2 Nov 2014
Here's an intriguing little teaser (as of course teasers should be) for this year's John Lewis ad. We're not told it's for the revered department store - instead we see an animated penguin on a coach with the hashtag 'MontyThePenguin' in the corner below a super for Gogglebox. The fact the there's also a super saying 'advertisement' provides a clue that we'll see it during an ad break in the programme - making it very clever way to generate anticipation.

John Lewis
"150 Years"
90s
4 May 2014
It's a sign of their well-earned confidence that with every ad, John Lewis seems to move further and further away from showing any hint of product. In this 90 second spot celebrating 150 years of "never standing still", we see a selection of vignettes showing memorable moments that typical customers have experienced throughout that time.

John Lewis
"Clearance Sale"
20s
28 Dec 2013
Strangely, this doesn't feel at all like a John Lewis ad, even though it's a clearance ad rather than a branding one. The minimalism's very stylish, and the reminder that there's a two year guarantee on sales goods is smart, but the very sparseness of this makes it seem as if there's not a lot left to pick through.

John Lewis
"The Bear and the Hare"
2 mins
8 Nov 2013
John Lewis's Christmas effort is now well established as the 'daddy', and the clamour ahead of this year's unveiling has been quite remarkable. Is it worth all the fuss? Of course it is. Like last year, there's a notable absence of humans in the ad and this proves a wise choice as it allows an unremitting level of sentimentality.

John Lewis
"Sleeping Bear Teaser"
10s
6 Nov 2013
Sometime in the next twenty-four hours, the advertising media are going to explode with excitement as the new John Lewis Christmas ad is shown for the first time. And, from the looks of this cheeky tease, it's animation all the way this year... unless this is a classic piece of misdirection.

John Lewis
"Things Matter"
90s
18 Aug 2013
Dougal Wilson has worked his usual magic in the latest commercial for John Lewis. When an ad campaign is brimming with confidence, every execution swaggers into our commercial breaks with an aura which ensures we all look up and pay attention, and no current advertiser has more confidence than John Lewis.

John Lewis
"Old Fitness Equipment"
50s
17 Jan 2013
A middle-aged man examines all the old sports equipment in his garage as a gentle version of the Grandstand theme music plays. Everything is ruined and its disrepair is a poignant reminder of the fitness he once had and wants to possess once again. John Lewis promise they'll provide the ideal replacement for dilapidated stuff if you send them a photo of it.

John Lewis
"The Journey"
90s
9 Nov 2012
An utterly lovely commercial for John Lewis to mark Christmas... again. Following last year's brilliance was always going to be difficult but it cannot be doubted that they've succeeded with this wonderfully involving tale of devotion. Doff your hats to Adam&EveDDB and Mr Dougal Wilson.

John Lewis
"The Other Half"
90s
14 Sep 2012
The couple in this commercial aren't going to let anything come between them... not even eighty years or so. Through a split screen, we see their unlikely romance progress before we're reminded that John Lewis's arcane promise that they're "never knowingly undersold" remains as true today as when they first made it.

John Lewis
"The Long Wait"
90s
11 Nov 2011
A young boy's wait for Christmas Day seems unending but, despite the soundtrack, his motives are neither selfish or materialistic. It's a lovely twist and there are some beautiful moments here but it's not as clear as it could be and we wonder if viewers will see beyond the initial impression that we're watching a lad waiting impatiently for his Christmas presents.

John Lewis
"Through The Ages"
60s
17 Sep 2011
Each of these vignettes is lovely but what's going on with the order in which they've been put? We have a perfectly excellent system called 'chronology' that's served us extremely well over the years... why reject it? Sort it out... literally.

John Lewis
"A Tribute To Givers"
60s
12 Nov 2010
An utterly charming ad for the department store which meets the high expectations generated by its Christmas advertising. This tribute to givers offers a wryly amusing look at the difficulties of wrapping and concealing gifts. And it's beautifully poignant.

John Lewis
"Always A Woman"
90s
23 Apr 2010
This utterly beautiful minute-and-a-half somehow manages to encapsulate a woman's entire life from babyhood to elegant seniority. The film is dripping in sentimentality but Blink's Dougal Wilson gives it so much warmth and humanity that it's utterly irresistible.

John Lewis
"Sweet Child Of Mine"
70s
15 Nov 2009
A charming montage of superbly photographed sequences of children taking delight in Christmas presents uses a folk version of the Guns & Roses track, Sweet Child Of Mine as a musical accompaniment. John Lewis's Christmas ad, once again, is a cut above the rest.

John Lewis
"Chemistry Set"
10s
1 Dec 2008
This young man's eyes light up when he realises that someone has bought him a chemistry set for Christmas. We are actually quite surprised that such things still exist... presumably, these days, they don't contain anything combustible or poisonous.

John Lewis
"Afghan"
10s
1 Dec 2008
A short postscript to this year's John Lewis Christmas campaign coincidentally uses the same idea as a new commercial for Philips as an Afghan hound provides a perfect illustration of what can be done with hair straightening equipment.

John Lewis
"From Me To You"
60s
10 Nov 2008
A clever reworking of The Beatles song 'From Me To You' is used beautifully in this attractive ad which is guaranteed to grab the attention. Last year's Christmas ad was a hard act to follow and John Lewis were wise to steer down a different path. As it was last year, the brand positioning is spot on.

John Lewis
"Inspired By Spring"
40s
1 Apr 2008
Interesting follow up to John Lewis's popular Christmas commercial offers four different interpretations of Spring. As with its predecessor, stylishness is central and the sense that the department store is a little bit special is very successfully underlined.

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David Reviews - Lovely Lenzie Ltd, Woodbourne House, Seven Sisters, Lenzie, G66 3AW. Telephone: +44 141 776 7766. Editor: Jason Stone.