More comfort and joy was found in the one by online giant Amazon, which was rated the best.
A panel of five advertising, PR and marketing experts assembled by trade journal The Grocer rated the John Lewis ad, about a boy and an alien, last out of the nine offerings.
It was slammed as “a bit flat” – with the panel of five saying it “provides no reason to even consider shopping at John Lewis in store or even online”.
Each judge scored the ads out of five to find a total out of 25.
John Lewis, which has been accused of stealing a charity cover for the music featured in the promo, managed 14 – one fewer than the Selfridges ad, starring Jane Horrocks, on 15.
Mirroring its dominance over high street stores, Amazon was named the winner with a total of 23.
Featuring music by Adele, it shows a woman getting a gift from a neighbour, which the judges saw as a reversal of the stereotypical Christmas message.
The judges praised it for “its ability to make it easy to be thoughtful” adding: “Amazon is trouncing Britain’s bricks and mortar retailers at the tills and now it’s beating them on the Christmas ad front too.”
Three campaigns managed 16 out of 20 – Boots’s commercial featuring Doctor Who star Jenna Coleman, Asda’s shop turned into an ice rink and Lidl’s futuristic Christmas scene.
Starring Kevin the Carrot and footballer Marcus Rashford as a radish, Aldi’s charmer managed third place behind runner-up Marks and Spencer.
The M&S animated ad, with Dawn French and Tom Holland, brings to life its usually edible character Percy Pig.
The Grocer said: “The public will want a bigger and better Christmas than ever after last year’s washout. Have the ads met the challenge?”
ONES THAT SLEIGHED VS TOTAL TURKEYS
The results with scores out of 25:
Amazon – Young woman gets gift from thoughful neighbour – 23
M&S – Dawn French and Percy Pig – 21
Aldi – Kevin the carrot meets Marcus Rashford – 20
Argos – ‘Baubles to last year’ message – 18
Asda – Supermarket becomes ice rink – 16
Boots – Jenna Coleman gets magic handbag – 16
Lidl – Future Christmas scene – 16
Selfridges – Jane Horrocks game show spoof – 15
John Lewis – boy meets alien – 14