YMMV / Hogfather

The book:

  • Anvilicious: Death's speech to Susan about how humans need fantasies like the Hogfather (i.e. Santa Claus), or Terry Pratchett's books for example, to believe in when they're young so that when they grow up, they can believe in big fantasies like justice, mercy and...purpose.
    • The point was that something doesn't have to be a concrete idea to be a valid one.
  • Complete Monster: Jonathan Teatime is a Psychopathic Manchild. Lord Downey let him into the Assassin’s Guild out of pity that his parents died, only to later suspect that he killed them. If he is sent to kill someone, he will mercilessly slaughter them, their family, and their pets. He kills any accomplices he has the instant they're not currently useful to him, not excepting Ankh-Morpork's most gifted lock-picker who was an incredibly valuable asset to the Guild. He horrifies even hardened criminals who’ve earned their reputation on murder. The most terrifying thing about him is that he honestly doesn't understand that his sadistic behavior is wrong. He sees no difference between having a friendly chat with a man and stabbing him to death. The real kicker is when Teatime tries to use Death as a Human Shield against a weapon powered by the beliefs of children. It only hurts monsters, and goes through Death harmlessly, but kills Teatime stone dead.
    Susan: But... he was a man.
    Death: I think they know quite well what he was.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Teatime is quite the popular character among fans, despite only appearing in this one book.
  • Genius Bonus: Many of the computer references made towards Hex. In particular the teddy bear being removed might be a reference to the Microsoft Teddy Bear which was used as the icon for a vital file in the early windows OSs. Many users (helped by an email hoax) mistook the strange file for a virus and deleted it, with disastrous consequences.
  • Iron Woobie: Death. A recurring theme from his own Myth Arc, true, but it's especially visible when you see just how much he prefers giving presents to the living instead of guiding the dead.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Hoo boy. Mr. Teatime. The scene in the Tooth Fairy's castle where the Clap Your Hands If You Believe aspect goes horribly wrong for the mooks.
  • Nightmare Retardant: In-universe. Gawain and Twyla don't find Death scary, thus not identifying him as a "monster", partially because he's on a big comfy chair and eating a biscuit.
  • Uncanny Valley: The kids find Teatime's freaky heterochromia is a great deal scarier than a talking skeleton. Particularly because, as mentioned above, the skeleton is sitting in a comfy chair and eating a biscuit, and because Mr. Teatime's speech and mannerisms are never quite natural.
  • The Woobie:
    • Poor Bilious. Sure, we don't feel quite as sorry for him as we do for, say, Rincewind, but the poor guy gets all the hangovers from the god of wine without ever getting to actually enjoy earning them.
      • There is a chance that since adult concepts such as death do not exist in the Tooth Fairy's world, then hangovers might not exist either.
      • Except Bilious gets queasy again just as he and Susan enter the building. If anything, alcohol may cause instant nausea there, for the same reason that the mooks couldn't smoke inside without feeling ill: because that's how a little kid who's sneaked into the drinks cabinet and tried some would feel.
    • The Cheerful Fairy. The Senior Wrangler, at least, falls for her because of her Woobie-ness. Then he becomes a Woobie when she vanishes just before he was about to get serious with her.
    • Banjo, the Minion with an F in Evil.

The movie:

  • Can't Unhear It: Regardless of your opinion on the TV adaptation, Michelle Dockery and Marc Warren's performances as, respectively, Susan Sto Helit and Jonathan Teatime are probably going to be definitive.
  • Foe Yay Shipping: Between Susan and Teatime. Apparently based on the confrontation scene in the Tooth Fairy's home which, with the right sort of squinting, can come across as sexual tension.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Ian Richardson died shortly after recording his lines as Death.
    • Albert's Your Days Are Numbered situation if you look at the German dub. His voice actor, Eberhard Prüter, had died of a long-term illness at the age of just 69 in October 2014.
  • Ugly Cute: In the movie, the Eater of Socks looks like a fat, little, grey-skinned, rhino-elephant ...thing. In a good way.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/Hogfather