The annual John Lewis advert marks the start of the festive season for many.
The long-awaited 2021 ad has now dropped – signalling that it’s officially Christmas, and time for mulled wine and mince pies.
This year’s mini film is called ‘Unexpected Guest’ and features a young boy, Nathan, seeing an alien fly down to earth in a star-shaped spaceship.
He becomes pals with the extraterrestrial girl, Skye, showing her the magic of Christmas here in the Milky Way.
Like we’ve seen in seasonal ads gone by, the boy decorates the tree and sets the Christmas table with his family, but can’t get the alien visitor out of his head.
Our little protagonist sneaks treats for Skye, and sneaks out to experience his new friend’s first ever Christmas by her side.
The tagline reads ‘For a Christmas as magical as your first,’ as Nathan looks off into the distance, his intergalactic companion heading back to her home planet.
John Lewis normally feature a ‘special’ product in their Christmas adverts that’s available to buy, with cuddly penguin toys and pianos selling out in previous years.
Although this year’s has a futuristic feel, the items in it are more rustic and traditional, and the star product for 2021 is the Nathan’s knitted jumper, which he gives to Skye before she leaves.
There are also loads of other bits you can get your hands on. Here’s where to get them – close encounters of the third kind not guaranteed.
The special Christmas jumper
One of the main story arcs in the 2021 ad is Nathan giving his favourite Christmas jumper to Skye, adorning it with twinkly lights and a star (to match her spaceship, of course).
You can get your hands on the jumper now, with gold embroidery instead of lights so you can wash it and keep it for years to come. Made from a rich cotton blend, the navy, red, and green sweater is suitable for all the family.
Options are available for kids, men, and women, with prices ranging from £14 to £29 depending on which you go for.
10% of the purchase price of each is donated to FareShare and Home-Start UK, so you’re doing some good when you buy one, too.
Another of the ways Nathan helps get Skye in the Christmas spirit is by decorating a tree with her in the forest, inspired by his family decorating theirs.
The jewel tones and simple shapes they went for mirror the bright lights emanating from the alien’s ship, but have a classic festive twist (think angels and reindeer next to magenta insects and neon stars).
In the ad, Nathan’s sister hangs baubles from John Lewis’ ‘gemstone forest’ collection, which is all available to purchase now (as is the tree itself) with prices starting at £6.
Opt for a mish-mash of kitsch and traditional to get the look – and don’t be afraid of a little colour.
In the ad’s Christmas table scene, you may have been focusing on Nathan pilfering some mince pies for Skye. However, it’s worth another look at the table itself.
Gold napkin rings surround deep-hued cotton napkins, with fruit laid out on platters atop a peacock feather table runner. The gemstone forest theme is still very much in play at Nathan’s Christmas dinner, from the colour palette to the ’70s-style ‘extra-ness’ of it all.
Everything you see in the video can be purchased from John Lewis here – including the mid-century table itself. Prices start at £6.