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Halloween is over, which means it’s officially time to pack away the tricks and treats and start wallowing in a pool of sentimentality for 47 more days.
If you’ve been on the internet for any previous holiday season, you’ll know that retailer John Lewis’ advertisements are like the British equivalent of those Sarah McLachlan SPCA commercials: You know they’re going to make you cry, but you can’t stop watching because you’re strapped into this emotional rollercoaster whether you like it or not.
This year’s John Lewis advert isn’t out just yet (the brand had the good decency to give us one unadulterated week of fall), but imagine the world’s surprise when it learned the clip that had captured the hearts and tear ducts of millions around the globe was actually just a student’s take.
The 90-second ad by Nick Jablonka was uploaded in June for his A-level coursework but went viral over the weekend as people sought out the new edition. It shows the plight of star-crossed snowman lovers separated by a snow globe; the plot’s a little reminiscent of Disney’s “Lava” short, but without the heartwarming resolution. Will the snowman ever get to hold hands with his snowladyfriend outdoors? Will the two just watch each other melt away in the front yard and/or a box in the attic?
And, most importantly: Will the actual John Lewis commercial be able to top this heartwrenching knockoff?
Monica Riese now serves as the Daily Dot’s director of production, having previously been the publication’s entertainment editor and assistant managing editor. She is based in Austin, Texas, and formerly contributed to the Austin Chronicle, where her breaking news work was recognized by the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies.