It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Spec Fic…

This past weekend, I happened to catch Elf on television. For those of you unfamiliar with the movie, it’s about a human elf (I know, right?)named Buddy who was raised by elves at the North Pole (aka Santa’s workshop). He goes in search of his family; mischief and mayhem ensue, not limited to Santa’s sleigh being powered by holiday spirit.

The movie made me realize how much of our holiday lore is a work of speculative fiction. I’m not including religious works (even if some people consider them spec), but here are a few of my holiday favorites:

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A Huffman

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg

All of those, it should be noted, have been made into motion pictures or performed in some theatric venue.
Why is there so much speculative fiction surrounding the holidays?
Because even the most doubtful of us will suspend our disbelief just long enough to hear Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement Moore, if it means we can gain a few moments of hope that miracles can happen, that there are better times ahead, and that goodwill toward all man is possible.
My favorite holiday specfic has been and always will be A Christmas Carol. I love the whole time traveling aspect, the visitation by the ghosts (especially Marley…*shudder*), and, on the realistic side, knowing that people can always change.
Sound off…what’s your favorite holiday spec fic and why?

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Spec Fic…

  1. I’m with you on A Christmas Carol. Saw it in 3-D this year (eh — the effects were cool but the rest was way overdone), but the George C. Scott version is my favorite.

  2. The actual Christmas story, and in fact the entire Christian religion, is quite fantastic, so it’s not surprising that we see a lot of fantastical/mystical stories at this time. And I say that with reverence, I promise.

    I adore A Christmas Carol, and doesn’t it have one of the best beginnings? “Marley was dead, to begin with.” And it just gets better from there.

  3. Great post, Jo! Yes, it is all spec, right?

    I love the Muppets Christmas Carol. It always makes me cry.

  4. Parker Peevyhouse

    The Muppets version of A Christmas Carol is great–lots of humor. I like the really long version (to be vague) and I also love Scrooged with Bill Murray.

    The Santa Clause is one of my favorite magical Christmas movies. Tim Allen is so cranky–he’s great as a reluctant Santa Claus. The magic in this movie is nice too. Very full of wonder.

  5. Oh yes – A Christmas Carol is my fav. I saw it in 3d as well, and while it was a bit overdone, I quite liked it. You cannot forget the classic, Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol. How about It’s a Wonderful Life?

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