From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Christmas Carols

As Paula pointed out earlier this week, there have been many and varied movies and television shows that adapt, update, and just plain rip-off Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. We scoured the Internet to find some of the more memorable ones for your enjoyment.


Genre Interpretations

The Real Ghostbusters — “X-Mas Marks the Spot”

Though many episodes of this cartoon don’t hold up, this was one of the better ones. The ghosts of Christmas past, present and future are put out of commission and Peter, Egon, Winston and Ray have to do their job for them. Hilarity ensues, particularly the part where they strap old Scrooge to a wheeled chair with a viewfinder over his eyes.

Xena: Warrior Princess — “Solstice Carol”

Every now and then Xena’s writers decided that Greek myth wasn’t a big enough playground for them and decided to dabble in other cultures. It was much worse in later seasons, but “Solstice Carol” was one of the first inklings of it. It was heavily implied that the child Xena and Gabrielle protect in this episode is supposed to be a kinda-Jesus, but that notion is blown away in later season when Jesus actually shows up (cleverly going under the name Eli). Still, this episode did neat things with the Christmas Carol trope.

Back to the Future: The Animated Series — “A Dickens of a Christmas”

I bet most of you don’t even remember that there was a Back To The Future cartoon. (To be fair, neither did I; our intrepid intern Nicole dug it up.) Anyway, one of the things Christmas Carol episodes try to do is explain the origins of the famous story. Scrooge was a real person, he really did have an extraordinary experience, etc. In this one, Marty McFly plays the role of the ghosts. Yes, well… it was the 90s.

Smallville — “Lexmas”

In this version, the role of Jacob Marley is played by Lex Luthor’s dead mother and the scary future that might come about involves having to raise children with Lana — hide!

A Clip:

Watch the full episode here.

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