Or are you? Perhaps you are merely being judged by your outward appearance and your resting mean face. Maybe it’s not meanness at all. Maybe you are lashing out at a society and a people, our delightful yet not diverse Whos (except for one random human), who enjoy a life of excess in a beautiful mountain community full of wonderfully bizarre contraptions, while you spend your days in a cave with a dog?
I love Christmas specials, and since I believe myself a writer of things, I have decided to evaluate those specials every year. This year, I’m taking a look at that Christmas classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. And, as always, after watching it, I have some questions.
1. Does the title actually work?
Short answer? No. He did manage to steal everything during the transition between Christmas Eve to Christmas day but . . . (spoiler alert) Christmas still came, despite his efforts. So maybe How the Grinch Almost Stole Christmas would be more appropriate. Yes, I realize that title would give the ending away, but a) most people would likely assume that the Grinch doesn’t actually succeed in the stealing of Christmas because, well, it’s a Christmas special and b) if you don’t change the title, it’s a bald faced lie.
3. Is the reason for the Grinch’s not liking Christmas really because his heart is two sizes too small? After eliminating tight shoes and his head not being screwed on just right, we are told that the Grinch’s meanness is caused by his heart being physically two sizes too small. But if his heart is the size they want it to be, it won’t make him more loving. It will make him more dead. Severe cardiomegaly, anyone? Maybe the reason he’s mean is because you call him “The Grinch” and he has no other companionship besides a dog? Are there no other Grinches somewhere? Why is he the only one, like Tigger or Gonzo? What a lonely, depressing life he must lead. Perhaps, Whos, if you opened your heart and invited him to celebrate Christmas with you, he would like Christmas instead of wanting to destroy it.
4. Who names everything after themselves?
The Whos, that’s who. The name of the town that the Whos live in is Whoville (try doing that in the real world), and pretty much everything else was named Who something or other. And what the heck exactly is a “rare Who Roast Beast?” Is it just their arrogance shining though, or are the Whos actually cannibals? I don’t know, but I do know that our narrator (Boris Karloff) can’t stand the rare Who Roast Beast “in the least.” I have no idea why he had to call it out, though. Well, he is really condescending to the Grinch so maybe it makes sense. Also, why are there like five servants serving Cindy Lou Whoman personally? Is it a strawberry? No. It’s a Whoberry.
5. The thing the Grinch hates the most should make it abundantly clear why he feels the way he does about Christmas.
He complains that the Whos “Stand close together, hand in hand, and sing.” I have no idea why that would bother someone who spends all his time alone except for his pet who’s terrified of him. Oh, right. Because hedoesn’t have anyone to stand close together with, hand in hand with and sing. Empathy, Whos!
6. Why did it take him 53 years to come up with the plan to steal Christmas?
Seriously, it seems pretty straightforward. If he hated it so much, shouldn’t he have come up with the plan like, say, I don’t know, at least 45 years ago? Why would “steal everything” take so long to come up with?
7. That song.
Highly insulting and offers no specific reasons why he is so awful. Just opinions. And why should we value this narrator’s opinion? Because he can’t stand rare Who Roast Beast? Because he’s omniscient? Because he has a striking voice? Well, I for one don’t value his opinion. Give me facts, Boris, you elitist.
8. Why doesn’t Santa wear pants?
So you create a coat, a hat, and even boots, yet . . . no pants for your Santa? Or even decorative underwear? Questionable. Also, there was no mention of Santa until now. The Whos had no “Santa” themed decorations, so why are you dressing up like Santa? Bringing in a character this late in the game seems more like a plot device. And if you’re going to play the Santa card, would Santa let the Grinch take everything? Doubtful. And where was Santa when the Grinch was robbing everything? Shouldn’t they have crossed paths at some point?
9. Who goes to sleep holding candy canes?
10. Who’s going to catch him? Cindy Lou Human, that’s who.
Oh wait, the Grinch tells a terrible lie and Cindy falls for it. Man, humans ruin everything.
11. How in the world did that dog make it up the mountain with the complete contents of an entire town?That’s super impressive. There must be like a billion pounds of stuff and the dog who struggled going down the mountain (taking a route that, by the way, was completely illogical) valiantly makes the climb. That dog is a beast.
12. Despite having everything taken, Christmas still came. And the Whos sing.
Okay this is beautiful and meaningful. Christmas isn’t about what you get, but before singing, shouldn’t someone call the police or something? The contents of every house have been stolen. That’s bad. And alarming. Shouldn’t someone in Whoville be the voice of logic and say “Guys, guys. Let’s just hold off on the singalong until the authorities get here.” I mean, you clearly know who did it and you even have an eyewitness. Shouldn’t take too long to wrap this case up and get back to the singing.
13. After seeing that Christmas is so much more, what happens? So many more questions. If his heart grew three sizes (not the two it needed), how will it fit in his chest? Does he need a new name? Is he now an accepted part of the community? Will he be arrested or at least forced to pay for damages? Will the Grinch and his dog work through their abusive relationship or go their separate ways? Will the Who Servants rise up and form a union? Will the Whos force the narrator to try rare Who Roast Beast again? Will the Grinch be allowed to carry on half- or full-on naked? Will the Whos put up a wall after what happened with the Grinch, or will they realize, after spending time with the Grinch, that they should be more open to all types of people and work to make sure that everyone feels like they belong? Will the Grinch and the Narrator work on a new theme song for him?
There you go. So as you sit and watch How the Grinch Stole (or didn’t steal) Christmas this year, ponder these questions and perhaps . . . create some of your own to ponder.
Here it is. Steven's blog, where his thoughts about things are revealed. Good luck.