Do you remember when the movie E.T. came out? If you do, it’s probably time for some eye cream, because the movie was released in 1982. That’s 37 -yes, THIRTY SEVEN- years ago. How crazy is that?!
It feels like just yesterday that E.T. was trying to phone home, right? But I watched it again recently with my kids, & it’s an entirely different experience as an adult.
First of all, try explaining what that primitive word device is to your kids (it’s called a “Speak & Spell” kids, & that garbled computer voice was the only one he had, and we LIKED IT).
Or the fact that kids could ride their bikes where they wanted, when they wanted- hell, they could ride them right into the night SKY, dammit! The 80s rocked!!
And only in the 80s could a kid hide an ALIEN in his house for an entire week without his mom even having a clue, am I right??
But many of us have sentimental, bittersweet memories of Elliot & his little extra-terrestrial pal, which is why we are thrilled to see this dynamic duo paired up briefly again.
Actor Henry Thomas, back as a -*gulp* much older Elliot, who finally reunites with E.T. in a bittersweet commercial video for Xfinity.
The video short, entitled, “Look Who Came Home For The Holidays”, officially debuted on November 28 during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
And ok, maybe it’s just excess post-Thanksgiving carbs. Or PMS. Or maybe it’s getting a glimpse back into your OWN childhood as you watch adult Elliot’s face transform into a moment of ecstatic wonder as he chortles:
You came… back!
(*cue the ugly cry*) I don’t care if it’s a commercial. I don’t care what they’re selling, or if it’s a deliberate ploy on our sentimental, aging, heartstrings.
Elliot + E.T. = BFF 4EVA.
Elliot then introduces E.T. to his wife & kids (who, to their credit, take this alien arrival in stride). The 80s are long-gone, E.T. As Elliot points out,
A lot’s changed since you were here.
And then Elliot’s son introduces E.T. to life as we know it:
It’s called the Internet.
(Typical. E.T.’s been back on earth for about 20 minutes & he’s already surfing the web…)
E.T. spends the next few precious hours eating with the family, sledding in the snow, and cuddling to watch Christmas classics. It’s frigging adorable.
But like all good things, this too comes to an end. E.T. shows Elliot holograms of his own “home” and family, and Elliot knows their time is limited.
But E.T. doesn’t just slip out the back door unnoticed to head home, because Steven Spielberg’s magic from the 1982 original is still very alive & well, thank you.
E.T. bikes into the sky, with Elliot’s son and daughter accompanying him. The darkened night sky, the hoodies, the sweeping dramatic music….
(*cue more ugly crying*) Damn you, director Lance Accord, & Xfinity, for giving me all.the.feels. for a COMMERCIAL.
Reuniting Elliot and E.T. wasn’t just about seeing their story continue for the sake of it; their second meeting reinforces Xfinity’s message: Reconnect for the holidays.
As director Lance explained in a statement about the short film, the special relationship between Elliot and E.T. (and subsequently, Elliot’s family) was exactly what the commercial intended to convey:
More than anything, the whole story is about family.
Whether or not it’s a clever marketing strategy on Xfinity’s part, I’m sold.
Yes, it’s a commercial. But it’s also a throwback to most of our childhoods. It’s sentimental. It was magical (still kind of is, no?).
It reminds us that even as adults with homes, families, bills to pay, etc. -just like Elliot- there’s still a little bit of childhood magic to be found, when we least expect it.
Here’s the video clip in full: