Have you seen the latest Compare the Meerkat advert? It's a real heartbreaker.
It shows Aleksandr and Sergei taking their foster baby Oleg back to Africa – where they leave him.
Pass the tissues.
Yes, we know these are only animated puppets, and yes, we know we are being manipulated into comparing markets with other markets or whatever, but there is no question that the cutesy kats have struck a chord with the nation.
And if proof were needed of the emotional attachment to the Meerkat family, it comes in the reaction to the baby Oleg ad – for it has left fans so devastated and angry that a 24-hour helpline has been set up to help them cope with their, er, grief.
Moments after the ad aired this week, the hashtag #ByeByeOleg was trending on Twitter, and upset viewers waded in with their emotional responses.
One user wrote: "Just had a literal breakdown over the new compare the meerkat advert. WOW. Baby Oleg. Come back."
Another said: "I love baby Oleg nearly cried at the bloody compare the meerkat advert."
If you are similarly affected, you can call the helpline number and hear a message from Aleksandr and Sergei. They'll tell you baby Oleg is 'in the very safest of paws' in Africa with his friends.
And all while subliminally coaxing you to visit their website to compare different insurance deals. Seemples!
Not seen the ad? Watch it here...
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