TV & Film

Two fat nerds attack Movies, TV and Video Games!


After a very mixed bag of classic versions and modern re-tellings of "A Christmas Carol", today we wanted to end big on one we both hold dear to our hearts, the 1992 feature "The Muppet Christmas Carol" starring Michael Caine in the Scrooge role, and all your favourite Muppets filling out the rest of the cast.


We also look back over the collection we've watched and rank which ones had the best versions of the main charactors, as well as giving you our dream castings of who we think would be great in the roles, including a few surprises.



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Who knew that the UN made movies? Well they did, including this awesome spin on the Dickens classic, the 1964 TV movie "A Carol For Another Christmas", featuring an all-star cast including Sterling Hayden, Robert Shaw and Peter Sellers.


Trading the Victorian Era for the Cold War, this time instead of Scrooge we get a rich American industrialist being reminded that war is bad, and the way to stop the killing is to spend more time talking to resolve conflicts, since when talking stops, fighting starts.




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As we dive further into obscurity, today we pick a Christmas themed episode of the 70's action adventure show "The Six Million Dollar Man" called "A Bionic Christmas Carol".


Inspired by the Charles Dickens story, Steve Austin (no, not the Stone Cold one) uses his bionic powers to convince a hard-hearted company owner the error of his ways, all while dressed in a santa suit.


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Remember when Henry Winlker was the cool, leather jacket wearing Fonz in Happy Days? Well, think of the polar opposite in that and you get the character he plays in today's pick, the 1979 TV movie "An American Christmas Carol".


Winkler stars as Benedict Slade, a miserly old money lender in this adaptation set in Depression era New England. It's an interesting twist on the original story, and strangely is still relevant today.


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Today was a little bit of a dark horse, as neither of us had seen "Mister Magoo's Christmas Carol", and we were both a little worried after picking poorly earlier in the list, unsure of what this might bring us.


Thankfully, what it did deliver was actually a kinda fun little special from 1964 where the short sighted Magoo stars on Broadway in a musical version of "A Christmas Carol". It didn't have many of the usual Magoo tropes, but thankfull it did hit most of the marks to rank highly for accuracy, even if the ghosts were out of order.





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After the terrible effort from Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny yesterday, we jump back into the movie format and let Richard Donner, famous for the films "The Goonies", "Lethal Weapon" and "Superman" take the helm of todays feature, the 1988 Bill Murray classic "Scrooged".


Loosely based on the Charles Dickens text, Bill stars as a yuppie TV exec putting on a live television rendition of "A Christmas Carol" on Christmas Eve, only to be visited by his own version of Marley and the Ghosts, who show him the error of his selfish ways.


Does this movie hold up? Is it too 80's? Or did we like the twists to make an old story more modern?



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So far this year we've looked at traditional versions like the 1951 "Scrooge" and episodes that kinda miss the mark like The Simpsons "'Tis The 15th Season" but today we hit the bottom of the barrel with this Looney Tunes special from 2006 called "Bah Humduck".


It takes almost half way through the show to get to the tropes of A Christmas Carol, and even the laughs are light on the ground too, proving that not all adaptations can be winners.



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For Day 5 we get back on track with a real version of the original story, this time with the Robert Zemeckis directed "Disney's A Christmas Carol".


Jim Carrey voices Scrooge, as well as the three ghosts, and does a pretty good job of it in this 3D animated motion-capture feature. We also get probably our scariest Jacob Marley spirit and creepiest looking Ignorance and Want too.



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Okay, so sometimes we get things wrong. Today we looked at The Simpsons Christmas special 'Tis The 15th Season.


Sure as Christmas sepcials and Simpsons episodes go, this is a good one, however if we are talking variations or versions of the Charles Dickens orginal story, we are way off. There are some funny lines and nods to the source material, but it would really be a stretch for us to classify this as "A Christmas Carol" adaptation.





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How do you make the Ghost of Christmas Past look like they stepped out of a bad Duran Duran video? Obviously by making a version of the Charles Dickens classic in 1984.


Today we look at the George C. Scott as Scrooge adaptation of "A Christmas Carol", which not only features a blonde, teased hair ghost, but possibly the best Ghost of Christmas Present so far, played very well by Edward Woodward.



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For Day 2 of our Christmas Carol variants, today we went back to 1983 for the Disney animated "Mickey's Christmas Carol".


In this version we see Scrooge McDuck taking on the iconic Ebeneezer Scrooge role, and Mickey as his loyal employee, Bob Cratchet. Throw in some other Disney favourites as Marley and the Ghosts, and you've got a pretty reasonable version of the original story.


Sure, there's no mention of "Ignorance" and "want", but there is a shocking Tiny Tim scene neither of us were expecting.




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As we roll toward the end of the year, it must mean it's time for Mitch and Joe to flood the airwaves with Christmas special cheer. However, this year there's a twist...


For the last couple of years we've discussed 12 different Christmas specials in our mini episodes, but for 2016 we take it one step further and look at 12 different adaptations of the Charles Dickens classic tale "A Christmas Carol".


So, after a bit of a chat about the original story itself, we dive into day 1, and go a bit traditional, looking at the 1951 classic "Scrooge", or "A Christmas Carol" as it was known in it's US release, staring Alastair Sim in the titular role. What they did well, what they missed, and what's different to the book.


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