Ladies and Gentlemen: fasten your seatbelts. Get ready for the match you’ve been waiting twelve months for! It’s the
Christmas Villains’ Grudge Match!
Four tried and true nasties of the holiday season battle it out to see who’s the best of the worst!
Here are the stats for the four contenders:
Eberneezer Scrooge: (as played by Alistar Sim/A Christmas Carol)
|STRENGTH||Let’s face it: a leaf could blow this guy over. His evil power extends in other areas.||1|
|AGILITY||Has been avoiding spending Christmas with his nephew for thirty years or so. You know how hard it is to get out of holidays parties with relatives!||7|
|ENDURENCE||It takes visits from four ghosts and a premonition of his own death to turn him around. A tough nut to crack!||9|
|SPEED||Threatens everyone in town with repossession for unpaid debts and makes it home in time for a visit from Ghost. Not bad.||5|
|INTELLIGENCE||Doesn’t realize that listening to the ghosts and being nice to people isn’t going to stop him from dying someday.||5|
|EVIL LEVEL||Has allowed himself to be played by Vanessa Williams and Mr. Magoo.||9|
|MOTIVES||Unhappy childhood and death of sister turns him into bitter old fart. Something of a whiner.||7|
|ANNOYENCE LEVEL||Extremely annoying. Loses 2 points for not actively annoying people. (People must actually travel to his counting house to be annoyed.)||7|
|DAMAGE DONE||Forces Fezziwig out of business, dumps his fiancé, keeps the Cratchet family in starvation, passively causes the death of Tiny Tim (in alternate future).||7|
|WEAPONS||Lots of money. The word “Humbug” (not really sure what this does, but Scrooge apparently believes it has some power over enemies: he never stops saying it).||3|
|LACKEYS||Bob Cratchet does not assist Scrooge in his evil pursuits. In fact, he hinders Scrooge through nefarious whinings of his own, usually concerning the coal shovel or time off for Christmas. A major distraction for Scrooge.||3|
Henry F. Potter (as played by Lionel Barrymore/It’s A Wonderful Life)
|STRENGTH||Pretty scrappy for an old cripple. Got some bite left in him.||5|
|AGILITY||He’s a cripple. Although add one point for avoiding being reformed by the end of the film.||1|
|ENDURENCE||By the end of the film, he’s still the bad guy! You’ve got to give him credit.||10|
|SPEED||Makes George Bailey’s life a living Hell over a period of thirty years.||1|
|INTELLIGENCE||Winds up buying everything in town ten seconds after the market crashes.||7|
|EVIL LEVEL||Along with his notorious crimes against the town of Bedford Falls, he once allowed – in a TV version of the film – a slumming Orson Welles to play his role.||9|
|MOTIVES||He’s just mean. Add two points for the sheer spectacle of someone who is mean just for the enjoyment of it.||2|
|ANNOYENCE LEVEL||Drives George Bailey to call Uncle Billy a “doddering old fool”, insult the school teacher, yell at his family, drive into a tree, and consider suicide.||9|
|DAMAGE DONE||Passively responsible for George’s father’s death, forces George to abandon college, steals Uncle Billy’s deposit, drives George to consider suicide, turns Bedford Falls into a small-town Vegas (in Evil Alternate Universe).||9|
|WEAPONS||Has more money than Scrooge and not afraid to use it for his own nefarious plots.||5|
|LACKEYS||Has creepy, mute sidekick who wheels him around everywhere. With this man behind him, Potter is unstoppable.||5|
The Grinch: (as played by Boris Karloff/How The Grinch Stole Christmas)
|STRENGTH||Ten Grinches plus two!||9|
|AGILITY||Can sneak down chimneys, slink snakelike between gifts and even turn his head around 360 degrees (there’ll be no sneaking up on this guy)!||9|
|ENDURENCE||One cute song from the Whos and he melts like warm butter in their hands.||0|
|SPEED||Empties Whoville of their Christmas gifts all in one night.||10|
|INTELLIGENCE||Conjures up the plan all on his own. It’s not his fault that the Whos don’t react the way they should. Lose one point for going to the trouble of making a Santa Claus suit even though he knows all the Whos will be sleeping.||8|
|EVIL LEVEL||Probably gives Little Cindy-Lou Who (no more than 2) cancer by giving her a glass of tap-water (she’ll never reach 3). Allowed Jim Carrey to play him later in life.||9|
|MOTIVES||Undecided between the size of his heart and the size of his shoes.||5|
|ANNOYENCE LEVEL||The Whos barely notice his wicked efforts.||0|
|DAMAGE DONE||See “Annoyance Level”. Add one point for not washing his hands before carving the roast beast.||1|
|WEAPONS||A quickly made Santa Claus suit, a bunch of sacks, and a sleigh that he just happened to have hanging around.||7|
|LACKEYS||Max the dog, who helps out only because he’s got no other choice.||3|
Bumbles The Abominable Snowmonster: (as played by a lump of clay/Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer)
|STRENGTH||“He’s mean and he’s nasty! He hates everything to do with Christmas!” – Sam the Snowman||10|
|AGILITY||“Bumbles bounce!” – Y. Cornelius||7|
|ENDURENCE||If his teeth are pulled by an effeminate elf, there isn’t much more he can do.||3|
|SPEED||You practically have to walk up to him and smell like a deer in order to get caught.||3|
|INTELLIGENCE||He fell for the old “Hermie-makes-lame-pig-noises” trick a little too easily.||1|
|EVIL LEVEL||Sure he eats Santa’s reindeer, but come on – he’s a piece of clay!||5|
|MOTIVES||So he likes deer meat. How would you like it if all your teeth were pulled just because you had the nerve to go out and get some food?||5|
|ANNOYENCE LEVEL||Rather good at scaring everyone without actually having to do anything bad.||7|
|DAMAGE DONE||Add one point for putting the star on the tree crooked.||1|
|WEAPONS||Razor sharp teeth. Plus he swings a mean icicle against Rudolph.||9|
|LACKEYS||Doesn’t need any. Add two points for being an independent piece of clay.||2|
Well, those are the contenders. And now our first bout in a three bout series begins. Watch two old farts enter the ring to prove who’s the biggest humbug of them all in…
Eberneezer Scrooge vs. Henry F. Potter:
Battle of the Coots
Despite strengths lying in different aspects of their evil and nefarious characters, these two fighters are evenly matched up for this bout, each attaining a score of 63 (out of 110, but they’re old: what are you expecting?). Each of them have been training hard for this bout and we should be seeing plenty from the two men most responsible for forcing people to jump from bridges on Christmas eve.
Q: Mr. Potter, do you feel worried about the upcoming bout? After all, you are taking on one of the leading villains in literature.
A: Former villain, you mean! You see the way he scampered about when he finally got the Christmas spirit in him? Shameful, if you ask me! Three measly little ghosts give him a couple of bad dreams, tell him that he’s gonna’ die someday and he gets all “giddy as a drunken man?” What the Spirit of Christmas-Yet-To-Come neglected to tell him is that his number’s coming up tonight!
Q: You do realize that you’ll be going up against the pre-spirits version of Scrooge.
A: So what? Mention his sister or show him a tombstone with his name on it and the man turns to putty. You wouldn’t catch me prancing around like an idiot in my nightgown! Thank God I’m a cripple!
Q: Let’s get to tactics, shall we? What do you think will be your most effective weapon against Scrooge.
A: Money, of course! I can outbuy that old buzzard twenty times over. And if that doesn’t work, he must have some silly uncle who’ll accidentally leave his bank deposit with me. Then I’ll have him arrested! That’s how I got that dumb whippersnapper George Bailey!
Q: Yes, but George got out of trouble when his friends loaned him the money you stole.
A: Only because I didn’t have time to implement the second part of plan to kill everyone else Pottersville!
Q: You mean Bedford Falls!
A: For the time being, young man. That reminds me, if you should happen to be driving through Pottersville during the next few months, you may not want to breathe in too deeply.
Q: Mr. Potter, you’re a warped, frustrated old man.
A: Thank you. Don’t forget the “F” in Henry F. Potter stands for… [We interrupt the interview at this point to avoid a possible lawsuit from the FCC. It may be the new millenium, but there are still rules to follow. You can read the full unexpurgated version of this interview, all 76 pages of it, at http://www.Potterisafilthyoldswine.com].
Q: Well, Mr. Scrooge, how are you feeling about tonight’s bout?
Q: Uh… Yeah! Do you have any special tactics or strategy that you’re going to be using against Potter?
Q: Mr. Scrooge, do you have any idea what I’m saying at all?
Q: I see. Could you tell me how much one plus one is?
A: Humbug, humbug!
Q: What’s your favorite food?
Q: Not humbug?
A: Fire hydrant.
Q: Mr. Scrooge, now that we’ve established that you have no idea what I’m saying, do have any idea what you’re saying?
A: I’m as giddy as a drunken man.
A: He should be boiled in his own pudding and buried with a sprig of holly through his heart!
Q: Ah, here we go! Are these the tactics you’re going to use against Potter?
A: Any fool who goes about wishing anyone a Merry Christmas…
Q: Potter! P-O-T-T-E-R! The man you’ll be meeting in the ring in a few minutes! What are you going to do about him?
Q: Oh, for Christ’s sake. I’m outta’ here!
So, as you can see, we have an exciting bout ahead of us. I can see both the contenders heading for the ring. A dollar bill has been placed in the center of the ring to ensure that both contenders will not get lost on the way. Yes, they’ve honed in on the dollar bill. They’ve entered the ring and are making their way towards the dollar. I see that the referee, Yukon Cornelius, has speared the dollar with his pickaxe and chucked it away before either of the contenders have a chance to snatch it up, and neither of them are happy about that one little bit!
Uh… what’s that? My goodness, Mr. Potter has run over Cornelius’s foot with his wheelchair, allowing Mr. Scrooge the opportunity to take up the pickaxe and… Oh dear. I certainly hope that someone gets on the phone because we’re going to need somebody to ref this bout. Maybe we can get Frosty or Father O’Malley from The Bells Of St. Mary. Wow! Whoever said that the sinking value of the dollar has lessened the impact of monetary gain hasn’t seen a pickaxe sticking out of the blood-soaked head of…
But what’s this? A chill comes over the ring as Snow Miser, the snow God from Year Without A Santa Claus, steps forward and generously offers up his services as referee. Being immortal certainly is a plus for Snow Miser as he can avoid the type of sudden violence that felled his predecessor.
A few words from the referee, the contenders go back to their corners. Just waiting to see if they’ll scrape Cornellius off the ring. No? Evidently not, as the bell sounds and the fight commences.
Potter’s creepy assistant wheels him to the center of the ring as Scrooge hobbles out carrying a very sharp sprig of holly and a bucket containing… I’m not certain of this, but it looks like it might be boiling pudding! Scrooge starts to circle Potter’s chair. But what’s he waiting for? Oh, apparently he’s waiting to be wished a “Merry Christmas” before he strikes out with these deadly holiday knickknacks. Got to hand it to Scrooge; true to his character till the end. But it’s not helping here. The two are circling each other. Potter isn’t going to wish anyone “Merry Christmas” anytime in this lifetime…
What’s this? One of the ringsiders has wished his wife “Merry Christmas” and Scrooge has thrown the sprig with pinpoint accuracy straight between the gentleman’s eyes! Before he can stop himself, he tosses the bucket of boiling pudding into the crowd! Oh, the humanity! But back in the ring, Snow Miser has deducted a point from Scrooge’s score just as the bell sounds and the round ends.
Potter and Scrooge head for the center again and… they are trying to bribe each other into throwing the fight. As Potter said earlier, he can easily outbid… but what’s this? Scrooge has pulled out Victorian gold crowns and Potter’s eyes are beginning to sparkle! Smart move, Ebby, not getting your money changed over. Potter is attempting to rise out of his chair to get at the gold and his creepy assistant is trying to hold him back, but this Potter is a scrappy one! He takes two steps out of his chair before remembering that he can’t walk and falls flat on his face! Scrooge lifts Potter and piledrives him into the canvass! Where is the referee through all this? Why doesn’t he put a stop to it? Oh, yeah, he’s evil: I forgot.
It looks bad for Potter as Scrooge knees his body right in his jelly-like spine! But what’s this? There’s a shimmering puff of smoke in the middle of the ring and… Yes, it’s the Ghost of Christmas Past, pleading with Scrooge to look back in his childhood and see how his past mistakes have hardened his heart towards Christmas. Oh, dear, the spirit has just presented to Scrooge his sister’s early death and he goes to the floor shouting, “Spirit, torment me no longer!” I should pause to note that the three spirit rule is in effect tonight. If either of the fighters are tormented by three spirits and made to allow the spirit of Christmas into their hearts, it is considered a technical knockout.
Potter has used this pause in his own mauling to crawl back into his chair. He runs right over Scrooge and chases the spirit around ring! The spirit is frantically trying to conjure up heartbreaking images of his childhood, but Potter won’t have any of that! He traps the spirit into Scrooge’s corner. He pauses, almost savoring the moment of impact, he nods to his creepy assistant and…
The bell has rung and round 2 is over!
The bell rings and the two men stagger towards the center of the ring. Scrooge looks nearly used up; his weapons gone, he lifts his head towards Potter and starts shouting “Humbug” at him over and over. There’s a malicious gleam in Potter’s eye; it looks like he’s been savoring this moment for quite a while. And now, he pulls out his secret weapon… I knew it! He’s threatening to close the Building & Loan unless Scrooge gives up his chance to go to college and take over. Scrooge, shouting “Humbug” and not sure where he is, doesn’t realize that he doesn’t own a Building & Loan and falls for it immediately! He becomes a pawn in Potter’s plan. Although he does get to marry Mary, Potter makes his life Hell for years! Uh… just as I suspected! He’s gotten the deposit away from Scrooge’s Uncle Billy. Scrooge has forgotten that Uncle Billy is a character from a completely different story! It looks bad for Scrooge as he wanders home without the Christmas wreath, muttering “humbug.. humbug” under his breath. Potter has just sworn out a warrant for Scrooge’s arrest and Scrooge just barely avoids the punch in the mouth by the schoolteacher’s drunken husband. Oh-oh! Scrooge has just scampered to the bridge and…
But, what’s this, the Ghost of Christmas Present has just materialized in front of Potter and has shown him a crutch by the fire and an empty chair! He’s warned Potter that if these shadows remain unchanged by future events, Tiny Tim will die. Is that a look of concern on Potter’s brow that I see? Could it be that the iron will of Henry F. Potter might be cracking? Potter pauses and considers…
Meanwhile, Scrooge is having his own problems on the bridge. It looks like Potter isn’t going to have time to change his stripes as Scrooge swings one leg over the parapet and… Clarence Oddbody – AS2 – materializes and shows Scrooge what the world have been like if he had not been born. Unfortunately, the picture isn’t so encouraging. It seems that Tiny Tim would’ve grown up to be the star quarterback at London U, married Zuzu, and drove Potter into a home for the criminally demented. With a cry of “HUMBUUUUUUUUG”, Scrooge jumps off the bridge!
As Zuzu’s petals flutter to the ring, Snow Miser walks to the center of the ring and announces the official results.
“Ladies & Gentlemen, winner by technical knockout, Henry F. PoTTTTTTERRRRRR!”
Well, there it is. The first bout in this three bout series has ended in a knockout for Potter, who’ll go on to meet the winner of our next bout. Join us next time and watch the animated terrors of Christmas go at it hammer and sleigh. Don’t tune in late for the blood-thirsty battle of the brushstrokes in…
THE GRINCH vs. THE ABOMINABLE SNOW MONSTER!