Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Gather round children!
It's time to be told,
the stories of Christmas,
both new and the old.
It may be unusual,
it might be grotesque.
But it's these kind of stores,
that I like the best...
Have you ever felt that there's something....shallow about the typical Christmas stories?
Well if you haven't, you're in luck, 'cause you have me to tell you why they are!
I grew up with the classic stories, like Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, the Grinch (Boris Karloff version of course).
My parents introduced us to classic claymation gems Hardrock, Coco and Joe, and Suzy Snowflake as well. I, like many others, watched with childlike naivety these happy, carefree stories.
But are they really so happy and carefree?
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
The version I grew up with was the 1964 stop-motion feature.
Rudolph is a classic tale of child bullying, and shallow fame. Do you remember? Rudolph's own dad, was ashamed 'cause his kid had a red nose. A red nose! Instead of offering some Nyquil to soothe what is clearly a common cold, he forces Rudolph to cover his nose in black junk, just so he won't be different than the other deer at school. How...intolerant. (Insert a rousing chorus of Lady Gaga's: Born This Way here.)
It doesn't stop there! Whilst rough-housing with some friends at deer flying school, Rudolph's fake nose is knocked off, and the other kids see he is different from them.
What happens? They bully him of course. Santa, stops by, and does absolutely nothing to help this poor baby deer. Apparently Santa is not up to speed with his "North Pole Celebrates Diversity" curriculum that is probably federally regulated to prevent discrimination and harassment. Oh Santa. Next time you run for office, I can imagine the field day the press will have with this story...
Things aren't lookin' so hot for poor, Rudolph.
That is...until a great blizzard shows up, and suddenly Rudolph, and his shiny nose, are needed to light the way for Santa's sleigh. Rudolph saves Christmas and becomes super popular, of course, now only after he's deemed useful for something.
So children, we clearly learn in this folksy old Christmas tale to ridicule those who may be different than ourselves, unless we can get something out of them, or they save Christmas of course. Then we can be their best friend.
What about Suzy Snowflake? If you haven't seen this one, check it out! Basically, it's about a creepy snowflake fairy who stalks you. I kid you not. Every winter, she comes "tap-tap-tappin'" on your window paine to let you know she's in town. Freaky, right? My question is... is she breaking any sort of privacy laws?
Frosty the Snowman
Frosty the Snowman is another beloved children's story because, well, let's face it, he's a magical snowman! How cool is that?
But even magic, it seems, is not enough to protect this wonderful snowman from humanity's destructive tendencies. As I watch Frosty melt into a puddle of slush, I'm reminded of Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth and sadly shake my head.
I mean, lets be real here...Not even a magical hat will protect a snowman from Global Warming!
Frosty becomes an endangered species at the end of the show right along with the polar bear...
What about the Grinch?
Well, let's begin with what we do know.
We know that he has a record of breaking and entering. That he hates the generally happiness of everyone. Has no problem with theft.
The Grinch, it seems, can represent a hypothetical molotov cocktail of corporate greed, envy, and common criminal characteristics that one can see why he'd be an obvious choice of a main character in a children's film.
But then his heart changes.
I'm not kidding, it does!
At the end of the tale his icy heart melts, and is replaced by a heart of gold, which is actually a disturbing transition if I'm completely honest...
The Grinch's heart swells to an alarming size, which makes me really question how much longer he actually lived after bench pressing a sleigh full of toys on Mount Crumpet.
Some say it was the spirit of Christmas that caused this, I would respectfully disagree...
All the strain of his physical activities accompanied by the terrible food choice of roast beast would've probably caused the swelling, and a massive heart failure, to be sure.
I always wondered why his coloring didn't look so good. Now we know...
Are you queasy yet? Good.
Now, get out kids, story time's done.
Merry Christmas everyone! :)