Christmas is supposed to be a time of great cheer – a time for people to kick back, relax, and enjoy their family and the lack of homework. Of course, Christmas actually entails crazy shoppers, difficult finals, and everything but relaxing and caring about others. In fact, it is enough to make everyone feel a little bit grumpy. It is these times that require a movie to affirm and then melt the acquired cynicism. It is these times that require the original 1966 cartoon How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
For anyone who is unfamiliar with the plot, the story chronicles the great transformation of the Grinch, a grumpy green creature who lives on a high mountain above the ever-festive town of Whoville. Unfortunately, as much as the Whos love Christmas, the Grinch hates Christmas. Eventually, he becomes so upset by it that he decides to steal Christmas. The Grinch concludes that by taking all of the Whos presents, feasts, and decorations, he will kill their Christmas spirit. He then proceeds to dress up as Santa Claus and executes his evil plan. It goes off almost without a hitch, as he leaves the Whos with nothing to celebrate their festivities. However, the Whos still gather around their now bare town square and celebrate the holiday anyway. This melts the Grinch’s hard heart and he comes to love the whole Christmas season.
Throughout the half-hour classic, there are plenty of pleasures for even the most ‘Grinch-ily’ cynical viewer. Obviously, the colorful animation is amusing. Amusing in an “I am really dazed out from studying” sort of way. More amusing is actually listening to the lyrics of the various songs. Try to determine what “Da Who Dorey” means. Or, listen for all the fancy adjectives in the Grinch’s theme song; just consider the description of him as a “banana with a greasy black peel.”
For those who are feeling that their professors’ “heart[s] are full of unwashed socks; soul[s] are full of gunk,” it may be worth finding the original How the Grinch Stole Christmas either on television, DVD, or the Internet and watching the classic story of where the value of Christmas lies. Consider the Grinch’s conclusion, “He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! Maybe Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more!”