Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas Comes to PacLand (Shitmas Day #23)

The 1980's was a fantastic decade for cartoons, probably the last good one for the medium, Saturday morning and weekday afternoons. Almost everything that we were fans of had it's own animated counterpart, and along with the cartoon series, they also got a Christmas special, usually airing somewhere in prime time (this particular special aired on ABC, followed by a rerun of Joanie Loves Chache. l mean, ew).

On December 16, 1982, one of the hottest video game characters of the time received a holiday special: Christmas came to Pac-Land, and things may have never been the same for the little round bastards.

People who know me, know that l am a Pac-Man fanatic. l remember watching this special, probably on it's original air-date, on a little black and white TV in my parents living room. l absolutely loved this as a child, but with most things we loved, it does not hold up well at all. Christmas comes to Pac-Land isn't the worst Xmas special ever, but it's far from being watchable without rolling your eyes.

The plot goes like this: While playing in the snow, the Pac-Man family is attacked by the living dead(The Ghost Monsters). After fighting back, and leaving only the Ghosts disembodied eyeballs to float aimlessly, Santa comes flying through Pac-Land, lost as balls, terrified that he's gonna be late for the rest of the world, giving presents to all the non-poor boys and girls. The disembodied ghost eyes end up spooking Rudolph and ends up crashing Santa and his sleigh.

Santa awakens, surrounded by little, round, multicolored mutants with huge mouths and beady eyes. This had no effect on Santa, and the Pac-People were not freaked out by the odd-colored, hairy-faced fatman either.

Pac-Man and family bring Santa home(very trusting, Pac), while a few other townsfolk weld Santa's sleigh back into working order.

Pac-Man cuts the brass tax and asks what the hell Santa is selling. "Christianity!" Santa proclaims. "1,982 years ago, Jesus Christ was born! We use this time of year to celebrate His name and worship!" Pac-Man is easily duped into what Santa has to say, and seems to buy it hook, line and sinker.

Santa continues, telling Pac-Man all about Hell, when he realizes that he left his sack of toys in the Power Pellet forrest. Pac-Man and the family dog Chomp-Chomp go searching for Santa's sack, leaving Santa to canoodle with Mrs. Pac-Man, who plans on taking advantage of her and Pac-Man's "open marriage" policy with jolly St. Nick.

Bad news for Pac-Man, as the Ghost Monsters found Santa's sack first, and proceeded to ... play with the toys? l always assumed these were adult ghosts.

Pac-Man foolishly attempts to burrow under the toy sack and steal them back from the ghosts, to little avail. The ghosts pounce on Pac-Man, which l assume was a sexual assault on the same level as the movie lrreversible, because the screen goes blank, and we are not allowed to see what happens.

After the assault, Pac-Man crawls his bleeding anus back to his home, with Santa's sack. lt's all for naught, as Santa says there is not enough time for him to finish Christmas. Pac-Man decides that drugs is the answer, and drags Santa and the reindeer off to the Pill Forest.

The Ghost Monsters return to finish the job they started in the woods. Pac-Man tries to play on their sympathies, explaining Santa, the toys, Christmas and Jesus. The ghosts scoff at Pac-Man, tell them that there lS no God or Jesus and they are proof of this. "lf there was a Heaven Pac-Man, do you think we'd waste our time roaming the land?" Clyde remarked. "Get your head out of your ass!" Pac-Man and family look at Santa, puzzled. Santa shrugged. The Ghost Monsters float away, thinking that enough damage had been done for one day. Pac-Man begrudgingly help Santa get the pills he needs, and he flies away.

Pac and family drive home. ln total silence. As quickly as they had been brought hope, they were brought crashing back to reality.

Christmas had indeed come to Pac-Land this very day. And with it, confusion. Despair. Santa brought some hope of an after-life, and the evil Ghost Monsters took it away. They had finally won.

Doom had come to Pac-Land.

The End

l hope you enjoyed my review of the children's holiday classic, "Christmas Comes To Pac-Land! "

Thank you to Thomas Bryce and Shit-Movie Fest for being patent with my writing process.

Tune in next year, as l review another Video Game Holiday Classic:

Err... maybe not.

- Tom Kay

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