The Best and Worst of Christmas TV

Chad Skelton of the Vancouver Sun writes today about “the best (and worst) TV Christmas specials.” His favorite?

For me, there’s no question what the best TV Christmas special is: The Grinch. Ever since I was a kid, I loved watching it at Christmas and it remains my all-time favourite. For me, it’s the perfect blend of absurdity and humour — with just a little bit of sappiness at the end.

He goes on to compliment Vince Guaraldi’s soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas, but criticizes the special itself as “boring . . . and a bit too preachy.”

Not surprisingly, I disagree. A Charlie Brown Christmas is my personal favorite. So many great moments: the so-called Christmas play that’s just an excuse for kids to dance, Lucy’s insistence on an aluminum tree, Snoopy’s first place award for his doghouse light display, and of course the pathetic little Christmas tree with the one ornament all but tipping it over. Then, when, Charlie Brown has all but lost hope, when in desperation he finally cries out “Can anyone tell me what Christmas is about?” Linus steps up and reads part of the Nativity story from St. Luke (KJV) concluding “That’s what’s Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.” Perhaps it’s because I’m Catholic, but I’m glad to be reminded of the true meaning of Christmas each year.

So my choice for the best: A Charlie Brown Christmas (with the animated How the Grinch Stole Christmas a close second).

And my worst: The live-action How the Grinch Stole Christmas with Jim Carrey. If you haven’t seen it, don’t. It’s not even good for a laugh, it just sucks.

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