(Commercial) Jingle Bells

Well folks, the holiday season is officially upon us. No one can complain about stores decorating early or Christmas music being played 24/7 anymore. And it’s also the time when we start seeing holiday commercials pop up on TV, like this one from KMart, which has been getting a lot of attention. I can’t imagine why:

Honestly, what is KMart selling in this ad? And how do I buy it?

Over the years, there have been a number of memorable commercials that touch us to the core or can’t get out of our head, thus forcing us to partake in rampant consumerism. But hey, what better time than December to spend all your hard-earned money?

Here are just a few of my favorite holiday commercials. Did yours make the list?

Hess Truck

The Hess truck’s back and it’s better than ever – for Christmassss this year! The Hess truck’s here! If you sang that, then well done. You can keep reading. If you didn’t, what’s wrong with you? I don’t remember who I was talking to but apparently they had never heard of the annual Christmas Hess Truck? I realize we don’t have Hess gas stations out here in California, but I’ve defintely seen the commercials on TV. Although that doesn’t really matter because I see Dunkin’ Donuts ads all the time and there isn’t one in the Greater Los Angeles area…

Hershey’s Kisses

I remember watching this all the time growing up, and it’s kind of brilliant that it’s so timeless that Hershey’s can use it year after year without having to update it. Plus there’s the whole nostalgia factor when you watch it in 2013 as opposed to the 90s, so kudos, Hershey marketers! If only the actual chocolate tasted a bit better.


Remember when Gap went through that era of really awesome yet simple commercials? Yeah, this was part of it. This particular commercial was directed by Michel Gondry, who helmed Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. This ad makes so much more sense now, doesn’t it?

This ad is technically more of a general winter commercial, but I would be remiss to leave this out. Love Train is part of the whole Mellow Yellow – Dress You Up – Spot the Celebrity Gap ad series, and 10 points to Gryiffindor if you can spot the beautiful tropical fish that is Rashida Jones. And then watch the playlist of all the Gap ads like I did and waste too much time playing them over and over again.


What’s Christmas without the Coke Polar Bears? Nothing. Did anyone else have a trapper keeper with these bears on the front? No? Just me?

If we’re going way old school, we can’t forget about this 1971 classic. It’s one of the greatest, most remembered commercials in TV history and features the hippie anthem I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing. Again, if you can match a catchy tune with a good visual commercial, you’ve got a hit. And so does Coke.


The year was 1996 and we were introduced to a couple of talking M&Ms and our lives changed forever. Mix them with Santa and you get this fantastic holiday classic. You two. Making Santa faint.


This is another one of those commercials from my childhood that I vividly remember. I found it so facsinating that a kid – A KID – came out of that Snowman. Of course I get it now, but what a surprise that was seeing it for the first time as a tot. Too bad I don’t eat Campbell’s soup…


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