Forget Black Friday. People in Britain know the Christmas season has arrived when the big budget holiday ads start to appear.
The two- to three-minute mini-movies, which flood TV screens each November, get premiered, rated and analyzed for deeper meaning as the U.K.'s biggest retailers vie for customers with commercials that sell the idea of Christmas more than any specific object.
This year's biggest hit tells the story of a little girl who befriends an elderly man on the moon and doesn't mention the sponsor - department store John Lewis - until the final frame. Other ads feature the Muppets, accident-prone cats and Romeo Beckham leaping in the air ala Billy Elliott.