Lidl has released its 2020 Christmas ad, which pokes at fun at the sentimentality of other retailers’ festive campaigns while putting value front and centre.

The first few seconds, which were previewed on social media earlier this week, show a robin landing on a little girl’s windowsill, as the song asks: “Could a friendship be ahead?”

But the animated ad then changes tone to parody, with the widow slamming down between the robin and a mince pie. The song answers its own question with: “No! It’s a Christmas ad from Lidl, with great prices instead.”

It goes on to mock “emotional gravy” and “the moment where we want you to feel sad”, via an undisguised dig at rival discounter Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot. “We don’t need cutesy characters when carrots taste this good,” the song tells us, as a sad-faced carrot is skewered enthusiastically with a fork.

Read more: Christmas ads – who’s got the tone right so far in 2020?

Lidl said: “The ad nods to the unbelievable and unrealistic nature of Christmas ads, whilst interrupting these Christmas advertising tropes, and side-stepping them for great Lidl products, at great Lidl prices.”

It’s the work of agency Karmarama and is due to make its TV debut tomorrow (15 November) during the first episode of the new series of ITV’s I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, which starts at 9pm.

“Traditional Christmas advertising campaigns follow a very traditional formula of fantastical situations, stories and food – all of which are perfect for disruption,” said Lidl GB marketing director Claire Farrant.

“This year, we’ve parodied these tropes to show that Lidl’s incredible quality and value can give customers a Christmas reality they really can believe in.”

Karmarama chief creative officer Nik Studzinski said: “At the end of a year that hasn’t given us too much to smile about, our Christmas campaign for Lidl makes a little bit of fun at the clichés of Christmas advertising. We don’t want any of your ‘emotional gravy’ thank you very much. Just give us a Christmas we can believe in.”