Up in Santa’s castle of gold and crystal, which floats above the North Pole for no good reason, happy children from all the nations of the world help Santa make his toys, all while singing off-key and staring at the camera with the theatrical flair of roadkill. As they work, St Nick plays his pipe organ like some sort of Santa of the Opera, leering at the children at a manner which is probably intended to be jovial, but actually comes across as intensely creepy.
Meanwhile, down in Hell (which appropriately enough resembles a brimstone-laden jazz ballet class), Lucifer commands one of his devils to go up to Earth and tempt boys and girls to be naughty rather than nice. The devil, whose name is Pitch, jumps to it, and soon has a trio of little boys chucking rocks at a mechanical department store Santa… which let’s face it, we’ve all been tempted to do at some point. I don’t see the big deal myself.
Thus the battle between Santa and the Devil is joined, proving that we may need a few more missionaries to head down to Mexico to bang some kinks out of their theology. It doesn’t help that Santa is armed with some of the most sinister accessories ever conceived. His reindeer are clockwork robots who chuckle like they’re about to go for your neck, and he keeps tabs on the children of the world through a disturbing machine with an enormous set of human lips, a telescope with a giant eye that emerges from it on a flexible rod, and a human ear apparently grafted onto an oscillating fan.
There’s also some magic powder (well, it is Latin America), and an enchanted flower that allows Santa to teleport, and a weird dream sequence in which a kid gets his own parents in giant boxes for Christmas… well, basically, it’s all just weird.
Feliz Navidad everyone!