28 December 2011

Yes, it’s fun, but

Had the peculiar experience of watching Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol last night. I scarcely remembered (really scarcely) it, so one of my first thoughts was, This must have aired later than I think. But, no, it seems to have aired on 18 Dec 1962.
It's a favorite of my brother's, and my brother studied Dickens so if he doesn't have any problem with the treatment, I surely oughtn't. So the following are not problems I have with the show . . . they were just things which surprised me.
1. Making a musical of it, generally.
2. Magoo is such a congenial character, overall, he doesn't strike me as at all a mean Scrooge. He's Magoo speaking Scrooge's lines; which is all right, to be sure.
3. The Spirit of Christmas Present preceding that of Christmas Past.
4. Alice being renamed Belle. Maybe that was a phonetic choice . . . Jim Backus crying Alice! in the Magoo voice may have been something of a fright.
5. Tiny Tim is a cute animation baby, I don't think the threat to his health really comes across.
6. That the charwoman, laundress and undertaker come across as such a near-ghoulish troika reverts to 1 above, I suppose.
7. I suppose the goose had to be swapped for a turkey. Admittedly, not an important change.
8. During "Belle's" song there is a springtime sequence. This may sound strange, but in A Christmas Carol, that near freaked me out.
9. In general, the long Magoo Makes His Way to the Theatre in Times Square intro.
All that said, sure, it was fun.

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