The Must-Know Lore Behind Aldi's Christmas Characters

Santa isn't the only face that makes a once-a-year appearance at Christmas time. When it comes to the season for giving, some brands have cheery mascots that fans look forward to seeing just as much as the man in red each December. For the U.S., Coca-Cola's red-scarfed bears and Chick-fil-A's animated sweet-faced Sam bring a little extra warmth to the season. But for the U.K., Christmas means the return of Aldi's beloved cast of festive veggie and fruit friends.

We know a group of holiday carrots and bananas may sound, well, less than merry. But the U.K.'s love for this anthropomorphic crew of characters is more intense than your holiday party's eggnog. So intense, in fact, that when Aldi started selling plushies of jolly old St. Nick's healthiest little helpers for the 2022 season, The Guardian reports that 70,000 customers were waiting in a virtual queue to get their hands on the vegetables and fruits of the hour.

But it's not the characters' cute little faces that have earned them their following. No, as Extra explains, the U.K. is attracted to Aldi's Christmas characters' riveting history — a history filled with danger-fraught stories and menacing figures like Ebanana Scrooge on Entertainment. So, let's break down the intensive lore of the Aldi campaign that rules the United Kingdom's holiday season.

Meet Aldi's sweet carrot family

For Walt Disney, "it all started with a mouse," as Sotheby's puts it, but for Aldi's Christmas campaign, it started with a carrot. According to Extra, Kevin the Carrot first delighted the U.K. in 2016 in an ad that featured the steadfast veggie's attempt to stay awake to see Father Christmas. And make no mistake, in his debut, Kevin the Carrot endured danger as he had to navigate an obstacle course of a traditional Christmas dinner to get to a mince pie that Santa would surely stop to eat.

However, while Kevin was an instant hit, Aldi must have realized he needed company. When the carrot returned to TV screens for the following holiday season, Kevin and his audience were introduced to a female carrot in an ad influenced by "Murder on the Orient Express," according to The Drum, with whom he once again had to traverse danger to reach. Eventually, Kevin would go on to wed the ravishing soon-to-be Mrs. Carrot, whose name is Katie, and the two would go on to have three beautiful carrot children together named Jasper, Chantenay, and Baby. But, before long, dastardly fiends would come about to ruin the family's happiness.

Plus the heroes and fiends who help and hinder their holidays

As Extra reports, the first time Kevin and his beloved family faced off against a villain was in their 2018 advert. That was when Kevin had to overcome the sheer evil of one now notorious ​​Pascal the Parsnip, who had captured Kevin's family out of jealousy of all carrot kind. Then, in 2019, Kevin almost wasn't able to celebrate Christmas after being tied up by Russell Sprout and the Leafy Blinders. But, luckily, our favorite carrot hasn't just come across terrible fiends in Aldis' Christmas campaign. Kevin has also met many friends.

In 2019, Tiny Tom the Tomato, another beloved Aldi holiday mascot, freed the carrot from the evil Russel Sprout's bounds. And in 2020, when the orange hero almost didn't make it home for Christmas, the sweet-natured Harry the Hedgehog helped him make it back to his family just in time for fruit cake, according to Express. Not to mention, Kevin made a friend of the formerly Christmas-hating Ebanana Scrooge in 2021 when he taught the once Grinch-like banana a thing or two about the Christmas spirit.

While already expansive, this cast of heroes and enemies and their lore are sure to grow and change as Aldi continues its iconic Christmas celebrations. And now that you're up to speed, you'll be ready to watch the Aldi holiday saga continue.

And the adventures continue still

Another year means even more lore from Kevin the Carrot. In 2022, the family of carrots continued their adventures by taking a family trip to Paris for the holidays — but Kevin missed the memo. Paying homage to the classic 1990 movie "Home Alone," Kevin fights intruders back at home while his family works to get back to him. After a series of mishaps, Kevin makes a very fortunate run-in with Santa, and his family comes back just in the nick of time. While they missed out on the Eiffel Tower, they did have a trifle tower with their holiday dinner.

In Aldi U.K's 2023 holiday ad, the chain channeled the story of "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" by introducing the world to William Conker and his festive factory wonderland. Kevin and a group of other lucky winners are invited to tour Conker's factory, and they all learn valuable lessons along the way. Soon, a greedy grape, a selfish rhubarb, a sneaky kiwi, and a mince-pie-demanding brussel sprout get kicked off the tour until only Kevin is left. After proving he is pure of heart by distributing gifts to plumpty-dumpties, William Conker gifts Kevin his very own cheese, a play on keys, to the factory. Kevin's only request? To share his good fortune with friends.