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  • Blog Post: Scrooge U: Part XXXVII -- Ahrens & Menken deliver delightful "A Christmas Carol: The Musical"

    "Tell the truth. You're getting kind of tired of writing about ' A Christmas Carol ,' aren't you?" No, this wasn't an e-mail that some disgruntled JHM reader sent me. But -- rather -- the ever-wise & patient Nancy (Who -- FYI -- has been formatting each & every one...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U: Part XXXV -- How "A Carol Christmas" kick-started William Shatner's career

    Are you a fan of William Shatner 's Emmy Award-winning work on ABC 's " Boston Legal "? If so, then you should be aware that one of the main reasons that William was cast as daffy Denny Crane was because " The Practice " creator David E. Kelley supposedly caught Shatner's...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U: Part XXXI -- "A Diva's Christmas Carol" puts a silly but cynical spin on the season

    Some adaptations of "A Christmas Carol" are like a huge holiday meal. Rich, meaty, memorable. Really stick-to-your-ribs kind of shows. And then there are those holiday specials like " A Diva's Christmas Caro l." Which are the television equivalent of Chinese food. Don't get...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U : Part XXIX -- "An All Dogs Christmas Carol" is mutt ado about nothing

    Well, at least there's some truth-in-advertising to be found in this 1998 home premiere. For -- though " An All Dogs Christmas Carol " may not actually be an adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic tale -- this holiday special is definitely a dog. Copyright 1998 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Animation...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U: Part XXVIII -- "Ms. Scrooge" is kind of hit & ms. ... er ... miss

    As I mentioned in this past Sunday's review of " Ebbie ," " A Christmas Carol " is a surprisingly resilient story. It can survive a change of location or time period. Even giving Ebenezer Scrooge a sex change operation doesn't necessarily undercut the emotional effectiveness...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U : Part XXVI -- "Ebenezer" is just " ... blah-blah-blah"

    On paper, this sounds like such a clever idea. Shifting the location of "A Christmas Carol" out to the Old West. I mean, what better place is there to tell a ghost story than around a campfire? And then the truly genius notion of hiring Academy Award-winner Jack Palance to play a westernized...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U : Part XIX -- Missing scene mars "Muppet Christmas Carol"

    Just how good is The Muppet Christmas Carol "? Well, to be honest, that depends on whether or not you saw the version that ran in theaters back in 1992 OR the version of this Brian Henson film that now runs on television and/or is currently available for sale on DVD. "What's the difference...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U: Part XV -- Great Scott!

    When you've seen as many versions of "A Christmas Carol" as I have recently, you begin to notice that there's this pattern to the way a lot of actors portray Ebenezer Scrooge. That they tend to employ the same sorts of acting tricks in order to keep their performances entertaining & emotionally effective...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U : Part XIII -- Guthrie stages spirited "Carol"

    In ballet circles, " The Nutcracker " is now considered a lucrative cliché. Meaning that it's a show that most companies HAVE TO produce each year. Given that many people nowadays just don't consider it Christmas unless they're able to: Get dressed up. Go to the theater. Nod off while Clara & her...
  • Blog Post: Scrooge U : Part XI -- Ebenezer American Style

    Just the name seems somewhat sacrilegious: " An American Christmas Carol ." Copyright 1999 Image Entertainment I mean, is it even legal to do that? Take Charles Dickens' almost quintessentially English story out of its familiar 1840s London setting and then drop it into Depression-era America? To be...
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