The Snowman: is it outdated and offensive and should be banned?

WATCHING The Snowman is an annual Christmas tradition for anyone with nothing better to do. But is the whimsical tale about a boy running away with a stranger problematic?

The nose scene doesn’t pay off

The Snowman is charming, melancholy, and fails the basics of plotting. If there’s a scene in the first act where the lead character fucks about in a kitchen trying on different noses, it needs to pay off in the third act. If the Snowman had used the pineapple nose to defuse a bomb in a thrilling climax it would have closed the narrative circle.

It doesn’t pass the Bechdel Test

Oh dear. Not only are there barely any female roles in it, none of them have any dialogue. Plus one of them isn’t even human. This makes The Snowman irredeemably patriarchal in the eyes of Guardian readers when it could have easily included a scene where two women discuss the gender theories of Judith Butler. They fly over Brighton, after all.

It’s not part of the MCU

You can’t make a film called The Snowman that isn’t about a misunderstood teen who gets ice powers after being crushed in an avalanche. Perhaps he turns to snow when temperatures drop, or controls flurries with his mind? Either way, it should have tied into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Why would anyone care about it otherwise?

Where’s the diversity?

The little boy and his family are white. The drunk man on the boat is white. The snowman is whiter than Tommy Robinson’s chosen name. How does Channel 4 dare broadcast such a uniformly caucasian film in this day and age? The Ofcom switchboard is probably exploding with complaints. The least they could do is film a new intro with Leon Sissay.

Walking in the Air

Raymond Briggs gifted humanity with a beautiful, haunting story. The animated version added a song that made a eunuch lastingly famous. If the world can’t have one without the other, it would be better if The Snowman never existed in any form to begin with.

The message is dodgy

What are children supposed to take away from The Snowman? That they should go on a motorbike joyride with a stranger then run away to a different country together? Kids copy everything they see on TV, which makes The Snowman a worse influence than listening to hip hop without parental supervision. Melt him with a blow-torch.

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This week in Mash history: Norway panic buys last-minute gift for Britain, 1947

EVERY Christmas, Norway gifts Britain a 20-metre tall spruce in thanks for our air during World War Two, in a tradition the country is unable to stop without looking a dick.

But did you know that the gesture also marks the beginning of the festive tradition of grabbing a random present at the last moment and hoping for the best?

Norwegian King Haakon VII, sheltering in Britain after his country was invaded by Nazi Germany, knew he owed his hosts a gift. He was also painfully aware that he had no money, no country and was frankly busy.

In his personal diaries the King wrote: “One was, as the locals here in the East End charmingly say, shit out of ideas.

“We took the carriage on a great pilgrimage to the Marks & Spencer, the Selfridges, the Debenhams. My footmen suggested various items, but no pair of novelty socks quite encapsulated ‘thank you for the political amnesty and apologies for causing you to lose an aircraft carrier.’

“Another member of the royal party suggested we try Fortnum & Mason. It was pointed out to her that while one is royalty, one is not made of money.

“It was my educated opinion that the five years spent here in exile would be enough time for something to simply come to me. I thought maybe something iconically Norwegian, but fjords or the aurora borealis are hard to wrap.

“During afternoon tea with His Majesty I was still coming up blank, when I happened to catch sight of a card bearing an image of a Christmas tree. That’s what we could send! Trees are one of my country’s great natural resources, alongside alcoholism.

“That, along with a few meaningful words about evergreens and branches and Christmas spirit, will be perfect. We will look deep and thoughtful and not cheap and lazy. And as the trees are free, I’ll promise to send one every year. I imagine they’ll get bored of it by about 1953 anyway.”

And so the festive tradition began, and King Haakon VII became the first man to discover unexpected December postage and packaging costs.

Next week: to 1960, when the Stasi in East Germany invented Secret Santa as a form of divisive psychological warfare.