|THE POWERPUFF GIRLS: TWAS THE FIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS (cn, 2003)|
|Why was it such a
Blossom! Commander and the leader! Bubbles! She is the joy and the laughter! Buttercup! And she's the toughest fighter! Powerpuffs save the DAY!
Raccoon-faced wunderkind Craig McCracken has an uncanny knack for creating brilliant cartoons for all ages out of concepts that sound, on paper, extremely childish. The Powerpuff Girls was one of the best shows Cartoon Network had and its brief explosion of popularity was well-deserved. It was only after McCracken left to make Foster's Home For Imaginary Friends and the PPG episode quality started declining that people lost interest.
The Powerpuff Christmas special was made within the last year Craig was in control, so thankfully, it's good stuff. They stretched a 30 minute plot out into a full hour, though, so there are some slow parts.
"Twas the City of Townsville, and all through the town, the townsfolk were stirring, as snow's falling down!" The narrator, flush with holiday spirit, decides to talk in rhyme today. At Pokey Oaks Kindergarten, Bubbles is agitated that Buttercup is sending her Christmas wish list to Santa two days before Christmas. "You have to give him advance notice! I sent MINE December 26th! Of last year!"
Buttercup is asking for a Red Ryder BB Gun. "HAH! YOU'LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT!" calls a shrill bratty voice....
It belongs to tonight's villain, Princess Morbucks. Today she's bragging that she's such a good girl, she always gets whatever she wants for Christmas. Little does she comprehend that this is only because her father buys her everything, and she thinks the coal she gets in her stockings is from Daddy's coal mine.
Ordinarily, Princess is more clueless than CN executive Stuart Snyder. But the Puffs manage to turn on a small light in Princess's mind. What does that coal really mean? She ponders it during her limo ride home.
"DRIVER! Do you know
what those Powerpuffs said to me today? They said I was
NAUGHTY!! Can you BELIEVE that??"
It's little personality touches like this that made Powerpuff Girls great, and this special is full of them.
Princess finally realizes she has, indeed, been on the Naughty List all five years of her life, and she's FURIOUS. She uses her excess coal to put warpaint on her face, dons burglar/ninja attire, and launches a private jet straight toward the North Pole!
Using cunning stealth moves, the finest acrobatic gadgetry, and one scene directly parodying the Spider-Man movie, Princess infiltrates Santa's workshop in search of her target, which she finally acquires: the Naughty and Nice lists!
Well, this just won't do. Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup are all on the Nice list! In fact just about everyone is on that list, even Mitch. Even Toonzone moderator Delia (whose real name is Aron).
Is there anyone who's not getting presents from Santa this year? Just one. Princess searches for the Naughty list, and finds it in the form of a Post-It attached to Santa's computer monitor. There's only one name....Princess Morbucks! She SHRIEKS in OUTRAGE!!!
There's only one thing to do now! Princess grabs a pencil, erases the words "Naughty" and "Nice" from each list, and switches them. Then she throws back her head and laughs maniacally!!
Later that night, the citizens of Townsville slumber in their beds awaiting Christmas morn...except for Bubbles, who blasts down the stairs in a blue streak the moment she hears Santa leave.
But there's nothing under the tree. How curious. And he didn't touch his milk and cookies! Curiouser and curiouser!
Finally Bubbles checks the stockings...and finds nothing but a lump of coal. "NOOOOOOOO!!" she wails in high-pitched agony.
By the way, this scene is the most stretched-out part of the special and it takes darn near forever. Bubbles has to check the other two girls' stockings, so she does that, and then she has to check every single other stocking in Townsville, so she does that, which takes four minutes of screentime, then she has to wake up Blossom and Buttercup, and convince them they have coal in their stockings, which takes another whole five minutes. Ugh.
Something fishy is going on, and they have to figure out what. As soon as they head outside, it becomes apparent what: Princess is waiting for them, and she's the only one who got her present. Her request from Santa was to become a Powerpuff Girl -- a stronger, faster, more powerful Powerpuff Girl than any of the original three! Uh-oooooh.
The Puffs are going to tattle to Santa right away! Unless Princess can get there first, and tell Santa instead that they're coming to trash his home, since they received coal for Christmas and are obviously so naughty. As they blast closer to the Pole, it's an all-out high-velocity race and a ruthless battle for domination in one! This special so kicks Ted E. Bear's butt.
They reach the North Pole simultaneously, and still don't quit fighting, becoming a multicolored swirley of destruction that ricochets off walls and completely demolishes the entire workshop. They only cease when they realize where they've wound up and who is glaring at them....
I've watched many, many Misfit Specials and all of them have a Santa. This one is my favorite out of all of them. Instead of the traditional flawless perfect magical image everyone else uses, this just looks like an ordinary crazy man with a disgusting protruding paunch. And every line of his is terrific.
They picked a bad time
to barge into Santa's office, because he's tired and
cranky from delivering nothing but coal to almost every
single person in the entire world. "FIRST TIME IT'S
EEEEVER HAPPENED! EVER SINGLE ROTTEN STINKING KID IN THE
WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD WAS NAUGHTY!"
be!" says Bubbles. "Someone must have come in
here and switched the lists!"
"THEEEY'RE just jealous because I'm nicer and I'm smarter and I'm prettier than them, so they wouldn't let me be a Powerpuff Girl! THAT makes them NAUGHTY!!!"
"Wait, did you say THE Powerpuff Girls? The Powerpuff Girls who are always really really GOOD? Hey, that explains all the flying and floating around and stuff!"
"BUT IIIIIIIII SHOULD BE A POWERPUFF GIIIIIRL!!! MY DADDY SAYS I'M BETTER! MY DADDY SAYS I'M THE BEST! AND IF YOU'RE TOO MUCH OF A FATHEAD....FATHEAD TO SEE THAT, I'M GONNA TELL MY DADDY! AND HE'LL COME AND BUILD A PARKING LOT OVER THIS CHEAP LITTLE ARTS AND CRAFTS POPSICLE STAND OF YOURS! GET IT?? SOOOO, YOU BETTER GIVE ME WHATEVER I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS! 'CAUSE MY DADDY SAYS I GET WHATEVER I WANT WHENEVER I WANT IT! AND IF THAT MEANS ALL THOSE LOUSY WORTHLESS SECOND RATE BARGAIN BASEMENT BRATS OF THE WORLD DON'T GET ANYTHING FOR CHRISTMAS, THEN THAT'S JUST THE WAY IT'S GONNA HAVE TO BE! 'CAUSE IIII'M BETTER THAN THEM! AND IT SAYS SO RIGHT HEEEEERE! SO PUT THAT IN YOUR PIPE AND SMOKE IT, SANTA CLAAAAAUS!!!"
Total silence for a few seconds, then.....
"REEEEAAAAHHH!! I DON'T NEED NO STINKIN' LIST TO TELL ME WHO'S NAUGHTY AND WHO'S NICE! AND YA KNOW WHY? 'CAUSE I'M SANTA CLAUS! CHECK IT!"
"YOU!! YOU ARE THE NAUGHTIEST GIRL IN THE ENTIRE WORLD! I have no other choice...you are SO rotten, SO despicable, SOOOO naughty, I'M-A PLACING YOU ON THE PERMANENT NAUGHTY LIST! BUM BUM BUUUMMMMM!" He actually says "bum bum bum." Like I said, best Santa ever.
"NNNOOOOOOO!! I'M TELLING MY DADDYYYY!!" Princess flies away, but Santa takes away her Powerpuff status at that point and she falls into the snow.
"Wow, Santa! I
didn't know you could ask for superpowers for
Christmas!" says Buttercup.
And once again, the day is-----Oh, wait....THAT thing.
How can Santa reverse his mistake with scant time until simultaneous worldwide sunrise, AND his entire workshop in shambles? The only person who can save the day now is Ernest P. Worrell! And Jim Varney's DEAD!
No, wait! There are three small girls with amazing superpowers around....why not have them do it? They can get the job completed even faster than Ernest!
Go girls, go! They complete the task in lighting speed, even having enough spare time to chow on milk and cookies.
When the tired chicas arrive back home, it's still dark out, so they have a chance at getting a few winks in....or maybe not. Utonium runs into the room and excitedly pounces on the bed, exclaiming "IT'S CHRISTMAS!! IT'S CHRISTMAS MORNING!!"
too EARLYYY!" Blossom whines.
Bubbles suddenly rises.
"Wait. What are we DOING?"
Why didn't it fit in?