The whole thing was for the benefit of Tiny Tim.If you look at Marley and all the other ghosts, eternally damned for their greed and misanthropy, you have to wonder: what makes Scrooge so special? Why let the others sin their way into damnation, but give Scrooge a big spectral adventure through time and space to save him? Marley says that he arranged the spirits' visit, but why would they do what he says? There must be some larger purpose to making this random cranky bastard into a nice guy for the last few years of his life. Perhaps the universe has big plans for scrappy, kind-hearted little Tim Cratchett, and is making sure he survives his childhood. Would explain why Scrooge's future visions are, you'll die, your business associates won't care, your debtors will be relieved, your servants will sell your stuff, nobody will mourn, oh and TIM WILL DIE, REPEAT, THIS KID YOU NEVER HEARD OF UNTIL TODAY WILL DIE.
The whole thing was for the benefit of the Cratchett family in general.Maybe the powers that be had decided they'd all suffered enough and didn't want Bob and the others to go through the pain of losing Tim.
The whole thing was to change the moral climate forever.In The Screwtape Letters, or perhaps "Screwtape Proposes a Toast," Screwtape says that demons are intimidated by the pressure of working with particularly nasty people because they know how much they have to lose if the stupendous sinner repents and sets an example. "The great sinners," he says, "are made out of the same material as the great saints." It's not hard to imagine why turning a classic sinner like Scrooge would be more important than a less extreme and caricaturish likeminded person.
Marley is not in Hell.Alright, this one has some Catholic theology behind it. Thanks to this site, most people who end up on this page are familiar with the concept of Purgatory in some shape or form. Now, in Catholic parlance, Purgatory is the place where you go when you die when you're not quite ready for Heaven but not deserving of Hell. In Catholicism, you can be forgiven of your sins since God is all merciful, but there are also consequences to be paid, since God is also all just. You can pay those consequences on this side of life through acts of penance or if you aren't finished when you die, in Purgatory. A somewhat good analogy would be a teen who sneaks out of the house to go to a forbidden party, realizes their mistake and calls mom or dad to pick them up. Do mom and dad forgive the kid? Yeah, because they love him or her. But does that mean the kid will not be grounded forever? There are two pieces of evidence to suggest Marley is in Purgatory instead of Hell. 1) He visits Scrooge out of concern for his well-being to help Scrooge avoid Marley's fate. Funny thing about Hell, people who go there tend not to give the rump of a rat about anyone else. It is a place of suffering, gnashing of teeth, cursing, and etc and etc... Basically there is no kinship in Hell. If Marley was in Hell, he wouldn't care if Scrooge suffered the same fate, might even have wanted Scrooge to suffer the same fate since misery loves company and all. 2) Marley notes that he is doomed to endure his punishment until the end of time. Fun fact about Purgatory: it's not going to last forever. Once the End of Time is hit, Purgatory goes with it leaving only Heaven and Hell behind. Since Marley notes that he is doomed to walk the Earth until the End of Time and not for eternity, this indicates his punishment will indeed one day end. Just as Purgatory will one day end. And Marely's punishment seems very Purgatoryish, having to learn to come to terms with what a sad, sorry, excuse of a human being he was and how much hurt he caused.
Scrooge should not have reformed.
Scrooge cannot stay reformed.He's not the only person in his line of work, and the others aren't that much better. And it is hard to maintain the Christmas spirit year-round when you are living in a business & warehouse district. Inspired/stolen from a short story, "Who Killed Ebenezer Scrooge?" (also from the early 1990s).
Bob Cratchit isn't that good a person.He may be The Woobie, but he does work for Scrooge!
The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come was Fan.What could be more appropriate than the most important person in Scrooge's past showing him the way to the future? It makes since in that the GOCYTC was argueably the ghost that Scrooge most needed to hear from, and Fan cared more for Scrooge than anyone else ever had.
The three Christmas ghosts were three of the EndlessThe Ghost of Christmas Past could be death, as she is the most close to the humans. Destruction could represent Christmas Present. The Ghost of Christmas Future could be Destiny as he fills the character, he never gives a real answer (or any word at all, in the Ghost's case) he only say what's written to be said from him. The reason they do all this, is because Destiny asked them
Scrooge had been traumatized by the hard times of the early 1800s.Regency Romances aside, England was not a good place to be during, and for some decades after, the Napoleonic Wars. The economy had been dreadfully strained by the long wars, and had only just recovered by the late 1840s. Since A Christmas Carol is set, sometime in the 1840s (when it came out), it's quite likely that Scrooge was the equivalent of a Great Depression survivor who can't let go of things that made sense then.
Jacob Marley was a victim of premature burial.His ghost is depicted as wearing the same clothes he'd been wearing when he was still alive, yet his jaw is bound up with cloth like would be done by the undertaker. He must've fallen into a cataleptic state while wearing those clothes, and been buried alive in the belief he was dead. Miserly to the end, he'd left instructions that he be buried in whatever death-soiled outfit he died in — why waste a good suit? — so the mortician just tied up his jaw before consigning him to the grave, where he suffocated.
It was, in fact, All Just a DreamIt doesn't seem like that radical of an idea to this troper, but it seems like most people take it for granted that Scrooge really was visited by ghosts, when there's really no clear indication that it wasn't just a dream. All the inconsistencies and unanswered questions (ie, why was Scrooge singled out for redemtpion, what made Tiny Tim so important, etc.) could easily be because it was all a product of Scrooge's subconscious. He could well have been right from the begining—it was all just a bit of undigested cheese.
Scrooge will bequeath his business to Cratchit and his personal assets to build a hospital.We know Scrooge has no children of his own and very little time to live- certainly not enough to spend or give away all of his money. Furthermore, his nephew has never shown much interest in material goods anyway. Therefore, it stands to reason that Scrooge will bequeath to his nephew enough money to pay his debts and a little extra as a personal gift. As to the rest of his property, he will turn the business over to his new partner and longtime employee, Bob Cratchit, figuring he earned it with all those years of faithful service. He will order his personal assets to be liquidated with the proceeds used to build a hospital dedicated to treating the indigent, especially children.
Dickens made such a big deal about Marley being dead to prevent Wild Mass Guessing about his being alive.
Scrooge's father was also visited by spirits.This explains why he did a complete 180 personalitywise and sent Fran to bring Scrooge home for Christmas instead of keeping him at that boarding school.