BBC’s Christmas advert has sparked outrage among viewers who say it guilt-trips working mothers.
The advert, titled Wonderland, tells the story of a mother having a busy day at work and missing out on quality time with her son. It’s intended to be a tear-jerking reflection on the importance of making time for loved ones at Christmas, but not everyone found it so heartwarming.
The two-minute video begins with the mum rushing off to work as her family eats breakfast. In a bid to grab her attention, her son texts her to ask if she can watch the Christmas lights with him that evening, but she says she may be too busy.
The boy is then pictured roaming a seaside carnival and playing arcade games alone, while his mother is stuck at work. As her day becomes frantic, time freezes and she finally realises what she’s missing and leaves the office to be with him.
It ends with mother and son cuddling on a bench, fairy floss in hand.
The message at the end reads: “Christmas time together.”
Some viewers took to social media to criticise the ad, while others praised it as wonderful and touching.
“Sitting here sobbing. What an absolutely beautiful film. Family is SO important,” one commentator wrote.
Another added: “This made me cry. Wonderful video. Christmas is making time for those we love.”
And a third wrote: “This is probably BBC One’s most touching Christmas video to date.”
However, others argued it makes full-time working mums feel even more guilty, with one commenting: “Dear @BBC creative, your Christmas ad doesn’t bring people together. It piles on the guilt to working mums. Seasons greetings! Regards, a working mum.”
Another added: “Well done BBC – lets make full time working Mums feel even more guilty than they do everyday! How many employers would let their employees – male or female- just walk out! You need to rethink.”
Others asked why the man pictured briefly at breakfast was not taking an active parenting role.
“How to make working mums feel more guilty! I noticed the dad wasn’t spending time with his son,” one commentator wrote.
Another user added: “So #sexist! Undervaluing the woman’s paid work, depicting the man as barely present, and not asking him to drop everything to be with his son! What century is this?!”
However, a BBC spokesperson told MailOnline: “We have had an extraordinarily positive response to the film from audiences. Everyone is busy at this time of year and the film is simply about people cherishing the time they spend with loved ones.”