An emotional Christmas advert that cost just £100 to create is giving John Lewis’s Excitable Edgar a run for its money.
John Lewis’s annual Christmas advert has become a staple of the festive time of year, with many people arguing Christmas doesn’t even really begin until the creation has been revealed.
The company often goes above and beyond for its adverts, making them like a little film in their own right, but this year viewers think a DIY store from a small town in Mid Wales has given John Lewis some strong competition.
Check out the DIY store’s advert below:
The ad comes from Hafod Hardware in Rhayader, Powys, which opened in 1895 and is one of the oldest businesses in the town.
It follows two-year-old Arthur Jones as he wakes up in the morning, has breakfast and sets off to work at the hardware store.
We see the young boy sweeping the floors of the shop, stocking shelves and wrapping gifts for customers to take home, all the while offering a friendly smile and a thumbs up. At the end of the day, he leaves the shop and goes to pick up a Christmas tree that has been left outside his store.
As he stoops to pick up the tree, the youngster changes into an older man, who is actually Arthur’s proud dad and Hafod Hardware owner Tom Jones. Although those unfamiliar with the store may not realise it, the people featured throughout the ad actually make up four generations of Tom’s family.
The heartwarming scenes are accompanied by a cover of Alphaville’s 1984 hit Forever Young, performed by American singer-songwriter Andrea von Kampen, and the entire advert was filmed and edited by Tom and his filmmaker friend Josh Holdaway for less than £100.
Locals loved the advert and it has since racked up thousands of views online. It’s the third Christmas advert the family has released and Tom is hoping it will put a smile on people’s faces.
— Paul Beacon (@PaulBeacon0) December 4, 2019
Speaking about the ad, he said:
The aim is to make it the best Christmas advert of the year. The comments we’ve had so far have been amazing.
Making this video with my son has been an experience I will cherish for a lifetime. They say never work with animals or children but he was a joy. He’s such a bright boy and I would be lying if I said it was difficult to get him to perform on screen.
Whenever I watch the advert, it makes me well up with pride.
Hafod Hardware’s ad comes to a close with the line ‘Be a kid this Christmas’, a statement Tom utilised to point out there’s ‘nothing stopping us all from being big kids’ at this time of year.
The father went on to discuss how his creations have been compared to those from bigger companies, like John Lewis. This year, the department store’s advert features a little dragon named Edgar who shoots flames from his nose – or ears – every time he gets excited. As a result, he ends up destroying a snowman and the town’s decorations.
Thankfully, however, Edgar finds his calling when it comes to lighting the Christmas pudding.
Tom explained how he attempts to compete with bigger stores with a smaller budget, saying:
People always compare our videos to the likes of John Lewis, and we try to get the same message across as the mutli-million pound adverts do.
But there is an underlying message. We are just a small independent shop in Mid Wales trying to compete with the big boys like John Lewis and M&S.
We’ve shown that it can be done on a very small budget.
John Lewis?! Bollocks. Just nip to a quiet little town in Mid Wales for the best Crimbo advert this year – and it only cost them £100. Top stuff from @HafodHardware and @TomLewisJones 🎄❤️ https://t.co/KA66QEmGGp
— Matt Jones (@MattJones360) December 4, 2019
The family’s heartwarming advert has received a lot of praise from viewers, with people describing it as ‘fabulous’ and ‘beautiful’.
Who needs John Lewis when you got Hafod.
Best Christmas advert of 2019, hands down.
Hafod Hardware has certainly hit a high standard with its ad!
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.