History Film / AChristmasStory

13th Jan '17 12:55:41 PM Bisected8
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* LiterallyPrizedPossession: The leg lamp is a "major award" that Ralphie's dad wins in a contest and proudly displays in the window. It's a ridiculous lamp, but he prizes it simply because he won it. Also, the Orphan Annie decoder that Ralphie eats so many boxes of cereal for turns out to be nothing but an advertising gimmick, leaving him disillusioned.
7th Jan '17 8:25:31 AM Ezclee4050
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** The man who directs Ralphie and Randy to the back of the line to see Santa is Jean Shepherd.

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** The man who directs Ralphie and Randy to the back of the line to see Santa is Jean Shepherd.Shepherd (and the woman in the red hat next to him is Shepherd's co-writer and RealLife wife Leigh Brown).
6th Jan '17 8:05:09 PM Ezclee4050
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Based on humorist Jean Shepherd's autobiographical short stories, directed by Creator/BobClark, and narrated by Shepherd himself, the 1983 film ''A Christmas Story'' lovingly and hilariously depicts a childhood Christmas in [[TheForties 1940s]] America.

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Based on humorist Jean Shepherd's Creator/JeanShepherd's autobiographical short stories, directed by Creator/BobClark, and narrated by Shepherd himself, the 1983 film ''A Christmas Story'' lovingly and hilariously depicts a childhood Christmas in [[TheForties 1940s]] America.
2nd Jan '17 8:25:57 PM Ezclee4050
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* {{Pastiche}}: The original poster art is done in the style of a Creator/NormanRockwell ''Saturday Evening Post'' cover, including putting ''A Christmas Story'' in the same font as the ''Post'''s nameplate.
2nd Jan '17 8:22:02 PM Ezclee4050
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* ShownTheirWork: The flag atop the pole that Flick sticks his tongue on has 48 stars, since the story is set a couple decades before Alaska and Hawaii became states.
2nd Jan '17 5:36:28 PM Ezclee4050
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* EarnYourHappyEnding: In his DVD commentary Bob Clark admits that the ending is fuzzy and sentimental, but given the emotional rollercoaster the main characters spent the movie riding on and the irreverent tone of the rest of the film, the ending acts as a redemption.

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* EarnYourHappyEnding: In his DVD commentary Bob Clark admits that the ending is fuzzy and sentimental, but given the emotional rollercoaster the main characters spent the movie riding on and the irreverent tone of the rest of the film, the ending acts as a deserved redemption.
2nd Jan '17 5:34:05 PM Ezclee4050
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* EarnYourHappyEnding: In his DVD commentary Bob Clark admits that the ending is fuzzy and sentimental, but given the emotional rollercoaster the main characters spent the movie riding on and the irreverent tone of the rest of the film, the ending acts as a redemption.
30th Dec '16 6:08:37 PM Rippingtons60
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* GoodParents: Oh so very much.
25th Dec '16 10:06:16 PM CaptainCrawdad
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* AdvertisingCampaigns / AffectionateParody: In 2006 Cingular (now AT&T) ran ads parodying the film. Instead of the 'Red Ryder'/'you'll shoot your eye out' call and response, the commercials had Ralphie ask for a Cingular phone with the call back 'you'll run the bill up, kid!'.
** In 2013 TBS ran ads featuring the cast of ''CougarTown'' parodying scenes from the film (such as the little piggies and the pink bunny scenes) generally after the scenes occurred in the 24 hour marathon, in order to promote ''Town'''s new season starting Jan 7th of the following year.

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* AdvertisingCampaigns / AffectionateParody: AdvertisingCampaigns:
**
In 2006 Cingular (now AT&T) ran ads parodying the film. Instead of the 'Red Ryder'/'you'll shoot your eye out' call and response, the commercials had Ralphie ask for a Cingular phone with the call back 'you'll run the bill up, kid!'.
** In 2013 TBS ran ads featuring the cast of ''CougarTown'' ''Series/CougarTown'' parodying scenes from the film (such as the little piggies and the pink bunny scenes) generally after the scenes occurred in the 24 hour marathon, in order to promote ''Town'''s new season starting Jan 7th of the following year.



* AluminumChristmasTrees: Sort of. There really ''are'' Red Ryder [=BB=] guns, but (as of 1983) none that match the ''exact'' description given.

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* AluminumChristmasTrees: Sort of. AluminumChristmasTrees:
**
There really ''are'' Red Ryder [=BB=] guns, but (as of 1983) none that match the ''exact'' description given.



** While it's most associated with this movie, the "Drink More Ovaltine" ring decoded message was a very real thing that dates all the way back to the 1930's.
*** And now Ovaltine is [[https://www.facebook.com/OvaltineUSA/app_605197776211854 cross-promoting with the movie]].
* {{Angrish}}: The Old Man's string of profanities.
** ...or lack thereof when he gets ''really'' steamed:
---> '''Ralphie (narrating):''' The old man stood there, quivering with fury, stammering as he tried to come up with a real crusher. All he got out was...
---> '''The Old Man:''' ''NADDAFINGA!''
** This also seems to be Mrs. Schwartz’s first language.

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** While it's most associated with this movie, the "Drink More Ovaltine" ring decoded message was a very real thing that dates all the way back to the 1930's.
***
1930's. And now Ovaltine is [[https://www.facebook.com/OvaltineUSA/app_605197776211854 cross-promoting with the movie]].
* {{Angrish}}: To keep the film kid-friendly, strings of profanity are rendered as vaguely obscene-sounding gibberish:
**
The Old Man's string of profanities.
** ...or lack thereof
profanities when he gets ''really'' steamed:
---> '''Ralphie (narrating):''' The old man stood there, quivering with fury, stammering as he tried to come up with a real crusher. All he got out was...
---> '''The Old Man:''' ''NADDAFINGA!''
battling the furance.
** This also seems to be Mrs. Schwartz’s first language.frenzied screeching while beating her son.



* [[AsianSpeekeeEngrish Asian Singee Engrish]]: "Deck the harr with boughs of horry, fa ra ra ra ra..."

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* [[AsianSpeekeeEngrish Asian Singee Engrish]]: "Deck AsianSpeekeeEngrish: The kitchen staff at the harr Chinese restaurant sing Christmas carols with boughs of horry, fa ra ra ra ra..."JapaneseRanguage. The manager is [[StopBeingStereotypical embarrassed]] and interrupts them to try to correct their pronunciation.



* BerserkButton: Mrs. Schwartz doesn't take too kindly to finding out about her son's supposed swearing.

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* BerserkButton: BerserkButton:
**
Mrs. Schwartz doesn't take too kindly to finding out about her son's supposed swearing.



* BigOMG: Mrs. Shields, when she learns where Flick is the hard way.

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* BigOMG: BigOMG:
**
Mrs. Shields, when she learns where Flick is the hard way.



* ButtMonkey: Flick, Farkus's most frequent target as well as the poor sap that gets his tongue stuck on a pole. Especially in the stage version. "That's my sore arm!"

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* ButtMonkey: ButtMonkey:
**
Flick, Farkus's most frequent target as well as the poor sap that gets his tongue stuck on a pole. Especially in the stage version. "That's my sore arm!"



** The mother is a little bit on account of what she has to put up with, according to her somewhat stern attitude.



* CloudCuckoolander: Ralphie, especially when Miss Shields has to snap him out of his daydreaming.
** That creepy spacey kid waiting in line to see Santa.

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* CloudCuckoolander: CloudCuckoolander:
**
Ralphie, especially when Miss Shields has to snap him out of his daydreaming.
** That creepy spacey The kid in the aviator helmet waiting in line to see Santa.Santa. He creeps Ralphie out.



** "Ovaltine? A crummy commercial!? [[PrecisionFStrike Son of a bitch]]!"
* {{Corpsing}}: Melinda Dillon, Darren [=McGavin=], and Peter Billingsley all struggle not to laugh during the soap poisoning scene, and a couple of times, [=McGavin=] and Dillon hide their faces in their hands to cover up the fact that they're laughing instead of over the top crying.
** Billingsley doesn't even hide it; his face is sporting a huge grin as the scene fades out.
** Then there is the Chinese restaurant scene. Melinda can't help but giggle when the duck is brought out with head intact, and after shrieking among the head being chopped out, she breaks into laughter.
* CreatorCameo: The man who directs Ralphie and Randy to the back of the line to see Santa is Jean Shepherd.

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** "Ovaltine? A crummy commercial!? [[PrecisionFStrike Son of a bitch]]!"
* {{Corpsing}}: Melinda Dillon, Dillon and Darren [=McGavin=], and Peter Billingsley all [=McGavin=] struggle not to laugh during the soap poisoning scene, and a couple of times, [=McGavin=] and Dillon hide their faces in their hands to cover up the fact that they're laughing instead of over the top crying.
* CreatorCameo:
** Billingsley doesn't even hide it; his face is sporting a huge grin as the scene fades out.
** Then there is the Chinese restaurant scene. Melinda can't help but giggle when the duck is brought out with head intact, and after shrieking among the head being chopped out, she breaks into laughter.
* CreatorCameo:
The man who directs Ralphie and Randy to the back of the line to see Santa is Jean Shepherd.



* CreepyChild: The kid with the goggles.
-->"I like Santa."

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* CreepyChild: The kid with the goggles.
-->"I
goggles. "I like Santa."



** And Ralphie is more concerned over getting in trouble for his language than for pulverizing Farkus.
* DeadpanSnarker: When the [[MallSanta department store Santa]] tells Ralphie that he can't give him a Red Ryder [=BB=] Gun because "He'll shoot his eye out" and then pushes Ralphie down the slide with his boot.
** The Old Man's reaction to Ralphie's bunny pyjamas. "He looks like a deranged Easter Bunny..."

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** And Ralphie is more concerned over getting in trouble for his language than for pulverizing Farkus.
* DeadpanSnarker: When the [[MallSanta department store Santa]] tells Ralphie that he can't give him a Red Ryder [=BB=] Gun because "He'll shoot his eye out" and then pushes Ralphie down the slide with his boot.
**
The Old Man's reaction to Ralphie's bunny pyjamas. "He looks like a deranged Easter Bunny..."



** Also doubles as WhatAnIdiot.
* DroppedGlasses: When Ralphie manages to [[spoiler:shoot himself with the Red Ryder.]]

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** Also doubles as WhatAnIdiot.
* DroppedGlasses: When Ralphie drops his glasses when confronted the last time by Scut Farkas. His brother picks them up while Ralphie pummels Scut. Ralphie also manages to [[spoiler:shoot himself them off his face with the Red Ryder.]]



* EveryoneHasStandards: Even the mall Santa worries that Ralphie [[RunningGag may shoot his eye out]] and wishes him a Merry Christmas before shoving him back down the slide.

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* EveryoneHasStandards: Even the callous mall Santa worries that Ralphie [[RunningGag may makes the effort to warn Ralphie, "[[RunningGag You'll shoot his your eye out]] and wishes him out!]]" with a Merry Christmas before shoving him back down the slide.BB gun.



* {{Foreshadowing}}: [[spoiler:Everyone keeps warning Ralphie that if he gets that BB gun, he'll shoot his eye out. He ''does'' get the BB gun for Christmas... and the first time he shoots, the pellet ricochets back into his face.]]

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* {{Foreshadowing}}: {{Foreshadowing}}:
**
[[spoiler:Everyone keeps warning Ralphie that if he gets that BB gun, he'll shoot his eye out. He ''does'' get the BB gun for Christmas... and the first time he shoots, the pellet ricochets back into his face.]]



** [[spoiler:He soon realizes that his eye is fine and that the pellet only knocked his glasses off.]]



** There's a slight bit of AnachronismStew action all over the film. Though likely taking place circa 1940, it's loaded with objects, music and whatnot from all over the 1930s and '40s (and a few '50s things, and even one or two subtle '80s things). It's best to just see it all as a middle-aged man's jumbled and blurred memories of his childhood from decades earlier.
* FreakOut: Ralphie's beatdown of Farkus.

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* FreakOut:
** There's a slight bit of AnachronismStew action all over the film. Though likely taking place circa 1940, it's loaded with objects, music and whatnot from all over the 1930s and '40s (and a few '50s things, and even one or two subtle '80s things). It's best to just see it all as a middle-aged man's jumbled and blurred memories of his childhood from decades earlier.
* FreakOut:
Ralphie's beatdown of Farkus.



* GoshDangItToHeck: Played with, when the dad clearly ''wants'' to curse, but has to {{Bowdlerise}} ''himself''. Played straight when the family hears him trying to start the furnace.
** Rumors state that originally, the actor that played the Old Man was really cursing in the scenes where he's speaking {{Angrish}}. When the producers got back a rating from the MPAA, they quickly re-dubbed those scenes with harmless euphemisms or gibberish. In fact, right before the tire blows out, the Old man says "dad gummit," but those who can read lips can see him say "goddammit."

to:

* GoshDangItToHeck: Played with, when the dad clearly ''wants'' to curse, GoshDangItToHeck:
** The father is a notorious curser,
but has to {{Bowdlerise}} ''himself''. Played straight when the family hears him trying to start the furnace.
** Rumors state that originally, the actor that played the Old Man was really cursing
his vulgar tirades are rendered in the scenes where he's speaking film as meaningless {{Angrish}}. When Some of his dialogue that did contain swearing was redubbed after an initial review by the producers got back a rating from the MPAA, they quickly re-dubbed those scenes with harmless euphemisms or gibberish. In fact, MPAA. For example, right before the tire blows out, the Old man says "dad gummit," but those who can read lips can see him say "goddammit."



* HappilyMarried: Not even the "Legendary Battle of the Lamp" can permanently derail Ralphie's parents.

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* HappilyMarried: Not even the "Legendary Battle of the Lamp" can permanently derail Ralphie's parents. One of the final scenes is them both marveling in the play of the Christmas lights on the falling snow, arm-in-arm.



* KarmaHoudini: After Flick refuses to say who pressured him to stick his tongue on the pole, Ms. Shields tries to play their inevitable guilt as punishment enough. Ralphie's narration then smugly notes that this is an utter crock and all kids know it.

to:

* KarmaHoudini: KarmaHoudini:
**
After Flick refuses to say who pressured him to stick his tongue on the pole, Ms. Shields tries to play their inevitable guilt as punishment enough. Ralphie's narration then smugly notes that this is an utter crock and all kids know it.



* {{Leitmotif}}: The Bumpus Hounds, with "Chicken Reel" of all things.

to:

* {{Leitmotif}}: {{Leitmotif}}:
**
The Bumpus Hounds, with "Chicken Reel" of all things.



*** The first time Scut shows up, Ralphie and his brother and pals are accompanied by the Little Bird's theme from that same piece. And the fast-motion RunningGag of the kids getting chased by Scut everyday is a bit of ''The William Tell Overture''.

to:

*** ** The first time Scut shows up, Ralphie and his brother and pals are accompanied by the Little Bird's theme from that same piece. And the fast-motion RunningGag of the kids getting chased by Scut everyday is a bit of ''The William Tell Overture''.



* MallSanta: Technically, a pre-mall department store Santa, on a mountain-size display that would take up ''gargantuan'' amounts of warehouse space 11 months a year.
* MatchCut: Used for particularly humorous effect; a scene transitions from Randy lifting the lid of a toilet and getting ready to use it to a close-up of the mother lifting the lid off a pot of...questionable-looking stew.
** It's boiled red cabbage. Gross nonetheless.

to:

* MallSanta: Technically, a pre-mall department store Santa, Bigbee's mall Santa and his elf helpers are particularly disgruntled, either because all of the children scream when placed on a mountain-size display that would take up ''gargantuan'' amounts his laugh or as the cause of warehouse space 11 months a year.
it.
* MatchCut: Used for particularly humorous effect; a scene transitions from Randy lifting the lid of a toilet and getting ready to use it to a close-up of the mother lifting the lid off a pot of...questionable-looking stew.
** It's
of unappetizing boiled red cabbage. Gross nonetheless.cabbage.



* PrecisionFStrike: Oh fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuudge..[[note]]Only I didn't say "fudge."[[/note]] (Aversion/Lampshading, see "ClusterFBomb" above.)

to:

* PrecisionFStrike: Oh fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuudge..[[note]]Only PrecisionFStrike:
** Ralphie says, "Oh... fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuudge!" when he drops the lugnuts, though the narration clarified, "[[NarrativeProfanityFilter Only
I didn't say "fudge."[[/note]] (Aversion/Lampshading, see "ClusterFBomb" above.)]]"



* TheRemake: While not a direct remake, several elements of the film were reused from Jean Shepherd's previous made-for-TV films about Ralphie Parker. 1976's ''Phantom of the Open Hearth'' includes a lengthy subplot about the Old Man's leg lamp, which was largely repeated (with only small alterations) for this film. Likewise, that film sees one of the Old Man's buddies being abandoned by his friends in the midst of a bad situation - a subtle inspiration for Flick's tongue/pole saga. The 1982 follow-up film, ''The Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters'', sees the first on-screen usage of 'You'll shoot your eye out' when Randy wants fireworks. Allegedly, an almost entirely unknown and never aired telefilm produced in 1978 for ABC contains many elements later used in this film, including the birth of "Ohhhhh, fudge" (albeit spoken by Randy).
** More of ''Phantom of the Open Hearth'', specifically Mom's gravy boat catastrophe, ended up in the 1994 theatrical sequel ''It Runs in the Family''.

to:

* TheRemake: While not a direct remake, several elements of the film were reused from Jean Shepherd's previous made-for-TV films about Ralphie Parker. 1976's ''Phantom of the Open Hearth'' includes a lengthy subplot about the Old Man's leg lamp, which was largely repeated (with only small alterations) for this film. Likewise, that film sees one of the Old Man's buddies being abandoned by his friends in the midst of a bad situation - a subtle inspiration for Flick's tongue/pole saga. The 1982 follow-up film, ''The Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters'', sees the first on-screen usage of 'You'll shoot your eye out' when Randy wants fireworks. Allegedly, an almost entirely unknown and never aired telefilm produced in 1978 for ABC contains many elements later used in this film, including the birth of "Ohhhhh, fudge" (albeit spoken by Randy).
**
Randy). More of ''Phantom of the Open Hearth'', specifically Mom's gravy boat catastrophe, ended up in the 1994 theatrical sequel ''It Runs in the Family''.



* RunningGag: In the stage show:
** "What's for dinner?" "Lettuce and red cabbage."
** "That's my sore arm!" [[spoiler:The payoff comes after Ralphie beats up Scut Farkus: "Isn't that your sore arm?" "Yeah... but it just started feeling better!"]]
** "Where's Randy?" "[insert some odd place for a little kid to be playing; under the back porch, behind the couch, under the sink, etc.]" ''(nonchalant reaction)''
** And of course, in both versions, "YOU'LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT!"
** In the film, the kids getting chased by Scut and Grover to and from school, with Randy lagging behind both groups.
*** Almost always in fast-motion, with Randy's voice, sped-up, "Aw, c'mon guys! Wait up!"

to:

* RunningGag: In the stage show:
RunningGag:
** "What's for dinner?" "Lettuce and red cabbage."
** "That's my sore arm!" [[spoiler:The payoff comes after Ralphie beats up Scut Farkus: "Isn't that your sore arm?" "Yeah... but it just started feeling better!"]]
** "Where's Randy?" "[insert some odd place for a little kid to be playing; under the back porch, behind the couch, under the sink, etc.]" ''(nonchalant reaction)''
** And of course, in both versions, "YOU'LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT!"
** In the film, the
The kids getting chased by Scut and Grover to and from school, with Randy lagging behind both groups.
*** Almost always in fast-motion, with Randy's voice, sped-up, "Aw, c'mon guys! Wait up!"** Ralphie being told, "You'll shoot your eye out!"



* SeriousBusiness:
** When Schwartz issues a "double dog dare", then skips the "triple dare" and goes straight to the "triple dog dare", to make Flick stick his tongue to a frozen pole.
** Ralphie decoding Annie's secret message, and really his whole obsession with the [[NumberOneDime Red Ryder BB gun]].
** Many of the stories in the movie qualify, at least for Ralphie. "The Battle of the Lamp", "The Scut Farkus Affair" to name but two.

to:

* SeriousBusiness:
SeriousBusiness: A recurring theme, as the narrator explains a number of quaint anecdotes with humorous hyperbole to show how deadly important everything seems to be to a young boy.
** When The narrator explains the rules of daring among the schoolboys. He notes that Schwartz issues makes a breech of etiquette by going from "double dog dare", then skips the "triple dare" and goes straight to the "triple dog dare", to make dare," skipping over "triple dare." For his part, Flick stick his tongue reacts as if he has no choice but to comply with a frozen pole.
triple dog dare, showing the gravity of the situation.
** Ralphie Ralphies admission into the Little Orphan Annie fan club and decoding Annie's her secret message, and really his entirely captivated by the marketing campaign.
** Ralphie's
whole obsession with the [[NumberOneDime Red Ryder BB gun]].
** Many of the stories in the movie qualify, at least for Ralphie. "The Battle of the Lamp", "The Scut Farkus Affair" to name but two.
gun]].



* StopBeingStereotypical: The manager of the Chinese restaurant is fairly embarrassed and annoyed when his employees try to sing Christmas Carols and [[JapaneseRanguage have a little trouble with the "Ls"]].

to:

* StopBeingStereotypical: The manager of the Chinese restaurant is fairly embarrassed and annoyed when his employees try to sing Christmas Carols carols and [[JapaneseRanguage have a little trouble with the "Ls"]].



** ''...gently.''



* WhoNamesTheirKidDude: "What kind of parents would name their kid 'Scut?' Still, I had to admit, the name suited him." Also, unless it's a nickname, which is not made clear, what parent names a kid "Flick?" If there were any way to make your child an instant ButtMonkey...[[note]]Shepherd based Flick on a RealLife childhood friend whose last name was Flickinger[[/note]]

to:

* WhoNamesTheirKidDude: WhoNamesTheirKidDude:
** Discussed by the narrotor:
"What kind of parents would name their kid 'Scut?' Still, I had to admit, the name suited him." Also, unless "
** Flick's name is rather curious, though
it's never explained whether this is a first name, a nickname, which is not made clear, what parent names a kid "Flick?" If there were any way to make your child an instant ButtMonkey...[[note]]Shepherd last name or part of his last name. Shepherd based Flick on a RealLife childhood friend whose last name was Flickinger[[/note]]Flickinger.
25th Dec '16 9:33:18 PM CaptainCrawdad
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* AdaptationExpansion: The stage show version of the movie adds a few more scenes between Ralphie's parents, a few more scenes with Flick and Schwartz, some extra narration, as well as expands on the throwaway character Esther Jane (the girl that points to the window when Miss Shields inquires about Flick), giving her more lines and a couple rather sweet exchanges with Ralphie.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Film.AChristmasStory