5. Fixing Thurman’s Advent Calendar
A moment that nearly made the Top 10 is Thurman clambering into bed with Willie to read him a lacklustre section of the Christmas story. To Willie’s horror. When Willie later trashes the kid’s precious advent calendar in a drunken stupor, we get to see a character shift. He actually feels remorse. For the first time possibly. Off-screen he fixes his mistake. Offering a sliver of hope that he might not be rotten all the way down to the core. The candy corn is a lovely touch. Of course, a bad Santa would cram a Halloween candy into an advent calendar. They can’t all be winners.
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4. Mrs. Santa’s Sister
When Thurman walks in on Willie and Sue about to get down to business, they are both so entirely comfortable in their roles as squatters that Sue simply smiles inanely in her underwear on the floor. She’s completely unperturbed by the presence of a child while she’s half-naked. There is not a shred of self-awareness in any of them. This uncomfortable and strange beat is completely shattered when we realise that Thurman thinks Sue is Mrs Santa’s sister – and the reason that the Clauses need marriage counselling. The boy’s innocence is so endearing and the world in his head obviously makes complete sense to him.
3. Is Granny Spry?
Thurman’s heart-breaking home life is disclosed in this scene. Granny is not spry. He is a boy abandoned. It’s no wonder he is so desperate to believe in miracles. If he can believe his father is exploring mountains for a few years, then it’s not such a far stretch for him to believe that Santa would want to come in for sandwiches. While the audience is reeling at the revelation that Thurman essentially looks after himself, Willie is whipping on a balaclava and staking out the joint. He robs the oblivious (or purposefully ignorant) kid right in front of his eyes. Thurman gleefully yelling ‘bye Santa’ as Willie drives off in Mr Merman’s car is the fondant icing on the Christmas cake.