10 Best The Muppet Christmas Carol Moments

8. Bless Us All

The Muppet Christmas Carol diverges significantly from other Muppet productions, particularly those of a “retelling” nature. The Likes of ‘Muppet Fairy Tales’ and The Muppets Wizard of Oz are comedies of errors in which liberties are taken with the source material as a means of raucous chaos. Christmas Carol is not without its comedy – in fact its hilarious! – but it itself seriously when required and is not afraid to have truly heartfelt and emotional moments. It succeeds in avoiding ruining moments with snarkiness, awkward humour or quirkiness.

Whether this sobriety is due to the painful loss of Jim Henson and Richard Hunt prior to the production, or simply through the power of Dickens’ words, the film’s bravery is demonstrated as Robin (Kermit’s nephew in the part of Tiny Tim) leads his family in a rendition of “Bless us All”. It was very easy for this musical interlude to become sanctimonious or saccharine, but it is instead surprisingly moving in its themes of family and forgiveness. It is also hugely pivotal in Scrooge’s redemption, as we see Michael Caine’s heart thaw at Tiny Tim’s wisdom and love. Up until this point, Scrooge believed that his traumatic Christmas Past justified his bitter ways – it is only when he sees how those with infinitely less remain thankful and joyful (damned further by the fact that Scrooge himself could completely change the Cratchit’s situation if he willed it) that he learns empathy.

7. Feels Like Christmas

Compared to the barely contained excitement and anticipation of “One More Sleep”, this musical number represents the elation of waking up on Christmas morning. After the terrifying and upsetting visits of the Marleys and the Ghost of Christmas Past, the visit of The Ghost of Christmas Present is a shaft of light. Appearing as a jolly red-haired Santa Claus figure, his welcoming and generous nature even brings a smile to Scrooge’s face.

“Feels Like Christmas” is more than just a mere cheerful intermission from the terror of Scrooge’s haunting, particularly as the sequence serves as a succinct contrast to the earlier “Scrooge”. Previously, the Muppets cowered from a passing Ebenezer as they called him all the names under the sun. This time, they instead revel in and sing of the delights of Christmas. Caine’s performance even indicates surprise in the discovery that despite Scrooge’s immense capacity for wreaking misery upon his many debtors, his impact is completely undone by the single day of Christmas.

“Feels Like Christmas” is yet another testament to the Muppets’ surprising sincerity regarding its source material. Too often in festive entertainment, when the occasion to explain the true meaning of Christmas arises, vague schmaltz regarding fun and cheer is given, desperately avoiding the deeply religious and spiritual source of the holiday. Similar to “Bless Us All”, this number’s earnestness convinces us of the healing power of love – no matter how cringeworthy Scrooge’s first attempt to dance is.

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6. Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come

The Muppet Christmas Carol is arguably one of the most frightening movies to ever receive the U (Universal) rating. This particular moment is one of the scariest.

Once the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come looms out of the thick mist, a bell tolling to announce its arrival, our trusty narrators Rizzo and Gonzo (the latter in the guise of Charles Dickens), abandon us. They announce that its too scary for them to handle. Our only guide through this haunting is Scrooge who is frightened witless.

Tall, dark, hooded, faceless and voiceless. Eternally staring and pointing. Visually, The Ghost of Christmas Future is intimidating, but there is a surprising gentleness in his nature. His physical gestures, nodding an affirmative to Scrooge and placing a hand on his shoulder, are neither threatening nor harsh. Who would have thought the Muppet version of “A Christmas Carol” would capture the philosophy that there is nothing to fear from the future, just our own projections of failing to live up to our own expectations. By the time Scrooge’s haunting of the future arrives, he has gone through enough introspection to understand the Marleys’ warning and dreads what he must be shown. 90s era Muppets could never be accused of pandering.

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  • <cite class="fn">Kieran</cite>

    I think you’ll find that EVERY moment is the best moment from the best Christmas film of all time.

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