Why does it suddenly matter that a person suffering from a long, agonizing death? Death happens year round, people, just like breast cancer and colon cancer. Do we have some kind of fascination of making ourselves cry this time of year? I feel like crying, but it's more in line with the whole "fate of humanity" thing. It makes people thoroughly depressed and just kills the mood. BABY JESUS WAS JUST BORN, PEOPLE! (Ok, he wasn't actually born now, but some weird people would argue about that so I will drop it here)
Hallmark is a constant violator of this rule. If a Hallmark special comes on, it means it will feature some old person thinking about the "good 'ole days right before 'ma began her losing battle with the slow agonizing death." Oh, and there's also poor acting. I refuse to watch those movies because they would depress me way too much. I don't mean to say I don't watch movies with that sort of theme, it's just that it seems too tacky to worry about it this time of year unless it's actually happening to me.
After thinking about this for a while, I realized something: Nearly every so-called "Christmas special" I saw as a child involved something depressing or morbid in it. Allow me to demonstrate on the ones I remember.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: A malformed reindeer doesn't fit into society and gets bullied by people and is shamed by his parents. He runs away only to get into trouble with a reindeer-eating creature. He runs away to an island of other malformed or freakish minded people who live together and stew over being accepted into society. They get depressed because they are not accepted by Santa. After running away for YEARS, Rudolph, now an adult, can finally be of use to Santa after being shunned by him years ago. So Santa is totally using and abusing Rudolph now. THE END.
Frosty the Snowman: A group of kids basically commits petty theft from a magician and a snowman comes to life, but can't live in the climate or else HE WILL DIE. One kid runs away from him to the North Pole, but catches pneumonia in the process, and in a moment of selflessness, Frosty sacrifices his own life to make her better. After being reanimated by Santa, Frosty gets taken to the North pole and promises to come back, but we never see evidence that he does.
Frosty Returns: Frosty wants to spread the religion of "Snow is good" to the heathens and gets physically attacked by one heathen that threatens his way of life. The heathen is debunked and everyone conforms to the "Snow is good" doctrine, even though we know the truth.
The Year Without a Santa Claus: I don't remember too much about this one, but I think it's about Santa becoming ill AND depressed because few people believe in him. Yes, SANTA IS DEPRESSED!
Santa Claus is Coming to Town: Where do I begin? First there is the child abandonment issue with Claus being stuck on a doorstep, then carried off by wind and no one cares to look for him. After being raised by wolves and elves, he goes to an oppressed town that is being ruled with an iron fist. This dictator locks up Claus forcing his friends to stage a coup. After all is said and done, he is exiled in the North Pole.
Cricket on the Hearth: A guy breaks up a BLIND girl's wedding so he can confess his true love. So a relationship is destroyed and one person involved is a blind girl.
Charlie Brown Christmas: Depression with commercialism. Oh, and a tree is called pathetic. This one I have the fewest complaints about.
A Christmas Carol: A man gets haunted by an old acquaintance's ghost, and then gets threatened with his own miserable, lonely death. Also, Tiny Tim, a child, is killed momentarily. He was once portrayed by Mickey Mouse's son.
A Christmas Story: Honestly, I don't have much to say about this one. Sure, a kid gets his tongue stuck to a pole and another shoots his eye out, but it's more for comedic effect and really isn't as bad as it seemed. This one is an exception to the rule.
Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey: A mother freezes to death, malformed donkey...there is way too many bad memories to tell here. DO NOT WATCH THIS SPECIAL. It will thoroughly depress even the most optimistic person.
Winnie the Pooh and Christmas Too: Everyone gets mad at Pooh when the wind doesn't blow the way they wanted it to. Pooh impersonates Santa to curry everyone's favor, but then he sort of fails at this. Santa never actually appears.
Nearly every single sitcom other than the Office: Homeless people die.
Santa Claus Conquers the Martians: The main violation of this movie is its own existence.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas: An outcast is forced to conform to a celebration that he thinks is hogwash and then he suffers from some kind of heart enlargement disease.
So yes, I think this drills down to the bedrock of why Christmas can be depressing. It's all over the television specials and movies. Be good and conform to how others celebrate Christmas seems to be the message, and if you have some kind of physical deformity then you need to go into isolation until you can be useful, if that ever happens.
Oh, and if you have a red or otherwise odd looking nose, Santa will shun you unless a massive blizzard pops up, and I think he should have at least upgraded his sleigh with bright headlights to meet industry standards. So yeah, never mind. Santa doesn't love you.
Anyways, Merry Christmas and I hope death and ill will are transported to the local trash heap for the day.