YMMV / The Muppet Christmas Carol

  • Awesome Music: "Scrooge". "One More Sleep 'til Christmas". "Marley and Marley". "It Feels like Christmas". "Bless Us All". "With a Thankful Heart".
  • Broken Base: "When Love Is Gone". Dear lord, "When Love Is Gone". You will find fans who feel the movie plays fine without the sequence as it did in the theatrical release and some who feel the addition added to the film's quality. The debate has certainly been blown out of proportion on Muppet fan sites plenty of times, especially when the 2012 Blu-ray release used the theatrical print and didn't even include it as a Deleted Scene.
  • Can't Un-Hear It: Michael Caine gives one of the best portrayals of Scrooge.
  • Critic-Proof: It wasn't totally panned on release, but it got mixed reviews from critics. Talk to most Muppets and/or Dickens fans today, though, and they'll almost certainly tell you that the movie was very good and stands among the best adaptations of the story by a long shot. This article details how much the film's reputation has grown in the years since its release.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Jacob and Robert Marley reminiscing about the time they shut down an orphanage, joyfully recalling the poor children and their frostbitten teddy bears.
    • Subverted when they shudder directly after laughing. They regret their actions.
  • Draco in Leather Pants/Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Lampshaded & subverted during the opening number, as sung by a choir of old lady muppets (and their puppeteers):
    He must be so lonely,
    He must be so sad!
    He goes to extremes
    To convince us he's bad!
    He's really a victim
    Of fear and of pride!
    Look close and there must be
    A sweet man inside!
    [Scrooge walks by them without putting any change in their bucket]
    ...Nah! Uh-uh!
  • Ear Worm: Every song in the whole movie.
    • 'Thankful Heart' has a very catchy tune.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The choir of elderly lady Muppets joking that Scrooge must be "lonely and sad" is Played for Laughs. Then we discover the truth about his backstory. The ladies were quite close to the truth it seems.
    • Statler and Waldorf play the ghosts of Jacob and Robert Marley... just after their original performers (Richard Hunt and Jim Henson respectively) passed away in a film that's dedicated to their original performers.
  • Genius Bonus: Look very closely in one of the crowd sequences. One of the background Muppets is a lobster hanging out of a basement window. This is a reference to the line, "like bad lobster in a dark cellar," one of Charles Dickens' weirder turns of phrase.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Tiny Tim's death might be even more heartbreaking now that his puppeteer, Jerry Nelson, has passed away due to complications from multiple illnesses. Even better, they both had an Incurable Cough of Death. Likewise, the eerily sad fading of the Ghost of Christmas Present, also performed by Nelson.
  • He Really Can Act:
    • Many doubted how anyone could replace Jim Henson as Kermit, but after the film, most would say that he's in good hands with Steve Whitmire, though not quite as good as Henson.
    • Dave Goelz shows far more range than Gonzo had before, as half his role is essentially an audiobook of A Christmas Carol.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In Quills, Michael Caine wears an almost identical outfit to his Scrooge clothing here, which if you've seen this film first, distracts you a bit from fully accepting his monster portrayal of Dr. Royer-Collard.
  • Ho Yay: Rizzo randomly kisses Gonzo's nose at one point.
    • It's not really that random. Gonzo had gotten his nose crushed by door for the sake of Rizzo's jelly beans, and it needn't have happened if Rizzo had just looked in his pockets in the first place.
  • Mexicans Love Speedy Gonzales: Outside of the Muppets fanbase, Charles Dickens fans are probably the biggest supporters of the film. This is primarily because, Muppets antics aside, the film is one of the most faithful adaptations of the novel and uses much of Dickens' original prose in the dialogue, and a great many people, critics and outlets, up to and including the British Broadcasting Corporation, believe that Michael Caine's Scrooge is one of the best portrayals of the characters ever put to media.
  • Older Than They Think: Several years prior, a Muppet-based adaptation of A Christmas Carol appeared in comic form in an issue of Muppet Magazine. Although it was an all-Muppet-character cast (including Sam the Eagle as Scrooge and Animal as Jacob Marley), it did cast Kermit as Bob Cratchet (probably following Disney's casting strategy) and Miss Piggy as his wife; and like the scenario mentioned in the What Could Have Been trope on the Trivia page, Gonzo as the Ghost of Christmas future (he didn't say anything because he forgot his lines).
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: Inverted: The majority of Muppet fans can't stand the fact that the widescreen DVD and Blu-Ray more closely match the original theatrical version, in contrast with the VHS, laserdisc, and pan and scan DVD, by cutting "When Love is Gone."
  • Uncanny Valley: The Ghost of Christmas Past. The effect of a human-like puppet operated in a water tank and added in via green-sceen is properly eerie. Granted, it's markedly less strange than the thing described in the book, which is more like an Eldritch Abomination in appearance.
  • Vindicated by History: Achieving only modest box office when it was first released, likely due to Home Alone 2 taking away a majority of its family audience and after Disney's platform release system at the time got crushed by Aladdin rather quickly, the film now has a cult following among Muppet fans and people who find it a great Christmas movie, and it's become a holiday institution along with the likes of It's a Wonderful Life, Home Alone and its sequel, and Miracle on 34th Street. Here's the full story.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The first film to ever use a green screen (instead of a blue screen), which allowed a tremendously beautiful blue nighttime flight scene.
  • The Woobie: Poor Bean Bunny. He has the door slammed in his face, a wreath is hurled at him, and to top it all off, we see him shiver in a pile of newspapers on the street - a reminder of the well-meaning gentlemen's points regarding the poor and homeless - and how, even though "There's Only One More Sleep 'til Christmas", there are still those on the street without food, shelter or family.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: "Oh sweet, they're going to do a version of Christmas Carol with Muppets. Fun! Wait, with Sir Michael Caine?!" Of course, it ends up working way, way better than you might initially think. Caine went on record as saying he had a ball with the production, adding that the best way to interact with the Muppets is to treat them all as though they're members of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
    • Although averted with most of the Muppet characters, who fit their roles like a glove. Highlights include Kermit as the put-upon Bob Crachit, Robin the Frog as Tiny Tim, and Gonzo narrating the movie as Charles Dickens himself.
    • Piggy as a loving, caring wife. Yeah...
  • Win Back the Crowd: People were very skeptical about how well Muppet projects could work without Jim Henson to guide them. This film proved there was still plenty of life in the franchise.