As I’m sure you are all aware, thanks to your Thanksgiving bloat and the terror-sweat that’s forming on your brow as you calculate how many presents you have to buy for your kids, Christmas is coming. We here at MamaPop Headquarters love Christmas! The joy! The parties! The hours upon hours spent driving to relatives as your family unit tears itself apart! There’s a lot to love about Christmas. But the one thing that always ends up being the most fun is getting the kids excited for Santa Claus.
For kids, there’s nothing more magical about this time of year than getting excited for a guy who breaks into your house and leaves you toys after judging you. So I’m going to spend a little time now through Christmas counting down the ways that Hollywood portrays Jolly Ol’ Saint Nick.
For our first Claus Countdown, let’s start with the disturbing. Sure there’s numerous examples of good and wholesome portrayals of Santa Claus. There’s even great examples of funny or down-on-his-luck Santa Claus. But I want to start with movie Santas that effectively ruin the jolly old elf. These are portrayals that will only inspire dread and unnecessary questions from the little ones, that are the exact opposite of everything the real Santa Claus should represent. Get the kids out of the room and brace yourselves for the Top 5 Movie Santas That Ruin Santa…
5) The Santa Clause (1994)
Now I’m not talking about Tim Allen’s delightfully reluctant Santa from this movie, I’m talking about the bumbling Santa THAT DIES at the beginning of the film. This always really troubled me, seeing a Santa in a very pro-Santa movie get offed so unceremoniously. Who was he?! Was he the original Santa? Was he just some other schlub who inherited the gig just like Tim Allen does? WHY ARE NONE OF THE ELVES ALL THAT SAD WHEN THIS HAPPENS?! Santa = ruined.
4) The French Connection (1971)
Don’t get me wrong, The French Connection is a GREAT movie, but damn if this movie didn’t make me look twice at any and all sidewalk Santas. Gene Hackman is clearly terrible at this job and God help you if he thinks you’ve done something wrong. Santa = ruined.
3) Gremlins (1984)
This really speaks for itself. Sure, we never actually see this Santa in question, but this little speech along with the mental images it conjured, were solely responsible for the fact that I wasn’t able to feel feelings for most of 1985. Santa = ruined.
2) The Polar Express (2004)
Why does he look like that?! Why does he sound like Tom Hanks?! What’s the story with those elves?! Are they afraid of him?! Are they like a private army?! Why does his skin look like its made of melted GI Joes?! Santa = ruined. (Most of this is in jest. The Polar Express is pretty delightful, but the animation style always robbed me of sleep)
1) Rare Exports (2010)
If you’re a fan of original horror/monster movies, I can’t recommend this enough. Obviously I saw this movie long after the previous movies ruined Santa for me as a younger chap, but I can’t think of any other film Santa that would probably fill your child with terror and ruin him forever than this little gem from Finland.
Any other movie Santas that ruined the fat man for you? Let us know in the comments below. And tune in next week for another Clause Countdown!