The Norwegian postal service Posten has released an annual Christmas video featuring Santa Claus falling in love with another man to mark the 50th anniversary of Norway’s decriminalisation of homosexuality.
The video, entitled “When Harry Met Santa,” is a four-minute short film in which the main character interacts with Santa Claus several times, before writing him a letter stating: “Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is you.”
As Santa Claus arrives at the home once again, revealing that he has employed extra help — the Post Office — with delivering presents in order to spend more time with Harry. After staring briefly at each other, the pair embrace in a kiss.
The video ends, stating that in 2022 Norway will mark the 50th anniversary of “being able to love whoever we want”.
Monica Solberg, Posten’s marketing director, spoke to the news website LGBTQ Nation about the ad, saying: “It has been a dark year for everyone – A global pandemic, code red for our planet, refugee crisis and more.”
“Perhaps what we need this year is a warm and heartfelt love story? A celebration of the fact that we can love whomever we want in Norway, despite everything bad that happens around the world,” she added.
“Posten is an inclusive workplace with great diversity, and we would like to celebrate the 50th anniversary with this fine love story. In last year’s campaign, Santa was angry at Norway Post, which took away from him the ‘business’ – this year, Santa is happy that Norway Post can relieve him a little, so that he can be with the one he loves,” Solberg said.
Left-wing British newspaper The Guardian, called the video “heartwarming”, reporting others had labelled the ad as “powerful” and “progressive”.
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Some have criticised the ad, however, including English singer Steve Brookstein who commented on Twitter: “Norway making Santa a closet homosexual cheating on Mrs Claus is the worst Christmas idea… EVER!”
The ad is not the first time the LGBT agenda has been pushed into being part of the Christmas holidays in recent years. In 2019, Netflix released a Christmas special portraying Jesus Christ as a gay man, leading to over two million signatures in protest, forcing the streaming service to pull the programme.
Last year, the American cable network Lifetime announced it would be releasing its first-ever Christmas film featuring a gay couple as the lead, with Amy Winter, executive vice president and head of programming, stating: “The world we create on camera should reflect the world we live in.”