Two years into the pandemic, the perfect Christmas gift for the beleaguered Generation Z seems out of reach again, as the highly contagious omicron variant of the coronavirus threatens the stability achieved thus far.

That oh-so-pricey present we can’t give those born between 1997 and 2012 — now often referred to as the “locked down generation” — is a normal life of course. That message is driven home in a holiday video from German discount retailer Penny that’s been viewed more than 14 million times since its Nov. 11 launch.

The three-and-a half minute clip, entitled “The Wish,” opens with a sleepless teenager and his mother sitting at the dinner table late in the evening. He asks her, “So what do you actually want for Christmas?” Her response, that she wants to give him the time and freedom he has lost to the pandemic, is at the heart of the video that has been praised for addressing Gen. Z’s pandemic losses.

I wish you wouldn’t hang out at home all the time, I wish you would sneak out at night, that we wouldn’t know where you were,” the teen’s mother tells him, as fictional scenes of life without COVID — parties, love, concerts, travel — play out. “I wish you’d secretly throw a party, and that you’d finally tell that girl you love her.”

The video’s release coincided with yet another autumn wave of the pandemic in Germany and elsewhere in Europe, triggering surging cases and restrictions across several countries for the second winter in a row. While Germany’s infection rate has since slowed, fears over the more contagious omicron variant have cast uncertain shadows over the holidays and into new year.

Read: France to restrict travel from U.K. due to omicron spread

“The Wish” had actually been in the works since February, according to Christoph Everke, the creative managing partner of Serviceplan Campaign in Munich that put together the ad for Penny.

“Every year we try to find out a very relevant topic for our clients and for the customers of our clients,” Everke told MarketWatch in a Nov. 25 interview, the day before the world learned of omicron. He said they kept unearthing articles from psychologists and NGOs discussing the pandemic’s effect on the youth, and as the father of three teenagers, realized it also resonated strongly with him.

“Then all of a sudden, everybody who was approached said, ‘Oh yes, we have to talk about this’,” he said, noting that included Penny’s executives who found the topic touched their own families.

The advertisement, directed by Marcus Ibanez and produced by Iconoclast Germany, has been the talk of German social media, viewed in France, the U.K. and even Poland. It debuted in the country’s cinemas from November 18.

Bir cevap yazın