Monday, December 17, 2012

Year One. Day Seven: "Blackadder's Christmas Carol" (1988)

Day Seven of my Advent Christmas Carol Challenge:

"Blackadder's Christmas Carol" (1988)

It goes without saying that this version of Dickens' tale is not one to slavishly labour over the original's plot.

This time around, everyone's favourite historical miser is played by Rowan Atkinson as "Ebenezer Blackadder," who is in festive spirits for the season. In fact, it is claimed that Blackadder is the kindest man in all of England; so kind that Tiny Tom has grown obese from all of the food he is constantly receiving as charity.

Of course, this being a Christmas special of the superb British sitcom, a retelling of the story was never going to be straightforward, in fact, it's a complete inversion of it.

On the night of Christmas Eve, Blackadder is visited by the Ghost of Christmas, and through visions of his past, present and future, he comes to learn that he wasted his life on being good, and has received nothing in return, so instead opts to be evil and reap the benefits.

Classic British telly doesn't come much better than this, so much so that you'll yearn for the days when Christmas TV was able to assemble a cast of actors as well known and talented as we find here.

As nasty and as dark as Scrooge's counting house.

"Blackadder's Christmas Carol" (1988) 4/5

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