Go Back to Your Mountain, Mr. Grinch


Each year, children cower behind their couches on Christmas Eve to hide from the terrifying green “What.” This being climbs down from his hideaway on Mt. Crumpit each year to disrupt the Whos’ of Whoville Christmas celebrations. Who can blame the children for cowering from the furry-fingered figment of Dr. Suess’s imagination?

The storyline of each movie that has been made based on the original book “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” has been heart-warming. In each version, the main antagonist learns to accept the holidays and enjoy them. There are no complaints to be made about the growth of the character or the storyline in general. It is effective in persuading even the grouchiest of folks to gather around and enjoy the holiday season with their families and that in itself is wonderful.

However, there is one flaw in the retellings of the Christmas story and that is the Grinch himself. He is horrifying.

His long green fur appears matted and moldy. His eyes are too small and his smile is too wide. His walk is intimidating and his voice is grating. 

The Grinch truly is a mean one as well, as all the films say. His heart may “grow in size” as the story continues but when the audience is first introduced to him, they shudder in fear. If this awful chartreuse demon with his crazed smile is capable of stealing Christmas, what else might he be capable of?

The films that have been related to discussing this menace’s plan differ from one another yet all showcase the same terrible being. 

The first film simply titled “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” is the most accurate to the original book and the storyline is kept intact. The Grinch is fearful. The audience is given a little backstory on why he hates the holiday as much as he does. The Grinch cannot tell why he hates it either, which is a bit perplexing. Why would one waste their time trying to stop something if they don’t understand why they hate it? This version of the story may be the most accurate but it is certainly not the greatest. The Grinch seems to lack real reasons for destroying the holiday.

The second release is pure nightmare fuel. If one thought that the 2D animated furry monster was terrifying, they should refrain from watching the second adaptation for this one is more horrifying. The long-winded debate on “The Nightmare Before Christmas” being a Halloween movie or a Christmas movie should be forgotten and the conversation should be directed towards the live-action “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” instead.

The Grinch’s appearance is unnerving and his cackle makes all who watch, cringe. His fur looks like the dust one might find in a vacuum and his beady eyes lack true emotion. He is not funny and his joke falls flat, unlike the feather duster-like tuft of hair that protrudes from his head. This film has been torturing audiences since its release in 2000 and it is best to put the film back in its plastic CD case and throw it back down to whatever hole it crawled out of.

The newest release with the snappiest title of all, The Grinch is a bit of an improvement. The soundtrack is lackluster but the animation is neither too simple nor too creepy. In this version, the Grinch has more motion and his motives are more easily understood. The Grinch does, however, turn away from the original plot of the book but Dr. Suess and this is annoying for seems to be filler for the film. Nevertheless, it is an amusing story and the audience can see a different side of the Grinch than they are used to seeing.

There is one positive that everyone can agree upon. Even though the Grinch is a scary being, the gifs and memes produced by the films can be appreciated by all, whether they celebrate the holiday or not.

While the Grinch may not be a holiday favorite for my family, if this classic tale is a must-see for you and your relatives, then enjoy the film and the winter break and laugh at the Grinch and his elaborate plan. 

Happy holidays Livermore High School!