Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983)


Thankfully, time has been kind to “Mickey’s Christmas Carol” mainly because the short truncates the Charles Dickens classic, but still maintains many of its themes and heart. In the end, it never sugarcoats the potential fate of Scrooge McDuck, nor does it deny that Tiny Tim will die eventually because he couldn’t afford to eat and purchase the medicine needed for him. That said, “Mickey’s Christmas Carol” is a classic animated special with your usual Disney Easter Eggs, while also telling the classic story of the Christmas spirit.

Set in 1843, Scrooge McDuck is a man angry at the notion of Christmas coming and refuses to let his workaday book keeper Bob the smallest of luxuries including extra coal to keep warm during the snowy winter ahead. Bob is played by Mickey Mouse who struggles for his wages and is anxious to make it home for Christmas to celebrate with his family. When Scrooge fires Bob and goes home, he realizes he’s being haunted by three ghosts that take him to separate stages of his life.

Not only do we garner insight in to why he hates the holidays, but also what people in his life think of him, and how he will ultimately end up when he dies. “Mickey’s Christmas Carol” is really nothing but the retelling of the Dickens’ classic tale but with Disney characters in place of human character, but it still manages to be an adorable and heartfelt film with some excellent production qualities. I really cared about what happened to these characters, and say what you want about Disney, but using their characters to convey classic literature ultimately exposed me, and likely many others, to actual literary classics.