So, our first proper post after the intro, and it’s a Christmas Special! Guess this would have more meaning if I’d done this for longer, huh? Eh. Anyway.
Christmas Specials! From the trite to the true, these are a fixture in our minds. Christmas movies, movies set during Christmas, movies which become Christmas traditions, special episodes about Christmas, you get the idea.
So, Christmas Specials (or the in-universe equivalent) are obviously specials that involve Christmas in some way. You might think that would make them pretty identical, but there’s a surprising amount of variety in the situations characters get into.
Sometimes it’s hijinks. Sometimes it’s thrilling adventure. The cast could end up divided only to reunite, or they could be taking time to just enjoy themselves. Sometimes they travel through time and space. Which is why I feel the best piece of Christmas media that illustrates the scope of specials is the Justice League Christmas Special. Consider the separate plots:
Prelude: The Justice League saves a planet together and kick back for the holidays.
Plot A: Superman invites J’onn J’onnz, the Martian Manhunter, to spend Christmas with the Kents. Also, Superman still believes in Santa Claus.
Plot B: Green Lantern and Hawkgirl have a snowball fight. Hawkgirl takes GL to a bar. Bar fight ensues.
Plot C: Flash is trying to get a toy for an orphanage. He clashes (then joins forces with) the Ultra-Humanite, who shares my distaste for Modern Art.
So with all this variety, what’s the common trend behind Christmas Specials? Well, from what I gather, they’re about relationships. Whether it’s spiritual or personal, most Christmas Specials are about the immaterial things that make us human and how they bring us together.
After all, in the Justice League alone, you have the following: Welcoming people into your home, people struggling with solitude, spending time with family and friends, taking time to have fun, sharing goodwill and charity with others. You even have the power of redemption, and how even the most cynical heart can be warmed by idealism.
Whatever it may personally mean to us, no matter how different these specials can get, you kind of get the idea. Christmas is a time where people from all walks of life can get together and enjoy warmth and fellowship, no matter their situation. From the wise man to the shepherd, it’s a time to spend with your loved ones and share goodwill with your fellow beings. And in the rules of conflict and drama, it’s also about how these things triumph in the face of adversity.
But seriously, go watch the Justice League Christmas episode, it’s amazing.