Ah, the holiday season. Back in the days before one could watch a Christmas Story for 24 hours straight on TBS, there was a veritable cornucopia of Christmas fare available for holiday consumption.
Of course there are the older classics like Miracle on 34th Street, It’s a Wonderful Life, and March of the Wooden Soldiers. You’ve got your slew of Rankin and Bass animations, a Charlie Brown Christmas, Muppet and Disney stories, and a million Frosty and Rudolph permutations. There are the Home Alone films, those ones with Arnold and Tim Allen, and all the Scrooge movies (the Bill Murray version being perhaps the best of the bunch). The Nightmare Before Christmas, Christmas Vacation, White Christmas, Bad Santa, Ellllfffffff…..
Oh, and let’s not forget that one movie that some people think is a Christmas movie because the story incidentally takes place around Christmas time.
Wait, that’s not…
Let me just…
There we go.
As I was saying, also beloved is the tradition of the TV show Christmas special. Do they still call them that, or are they now “holiday specials?” Regardless, I recently checked out a very special episode of the Twilight Zone (available to watch if you subscribe to Netflix) – “Night of the Meek.”
The 11th episode of the second season of the oft creepy TV classic has a bit of a heavy start to it and ends up being rather heart-warming.
The episode is short enough that I’d rather not spoil its plot, but suffice it to say that there’s something refreshing about the obviously flawed but goodhearted and honest protagonist. He drinks to drown out not his own plight, the but sorrows of the world around him. What, then, will happen when he’s given the chance to bring some Christmas cheer to the unfortunates around him?
If I had to offer a criticism, it’s that like so many other Christmas shows and films, there’s no Christ here. Sure, Santa Clause holds a prominent place in Christian custom, but he’s not the reason for the season. Still, I’d say a positive Christian message about selflessness and charity is a good second-place prize.
I highly recommend checking out “Night of the Meek” if you’ve got 25 minutes; you won’t regret it. Or you could go watch a Christmas Story again.