See Amid the Winter Snow is a family-friendly holiday satire play by Peter Fenton, which saw its world premiere in September 2019 at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival and later saw publication with City Limits Publishing in 2020.
The North Pole is a bustling little city deeply tied to its resident power couple: mega-philanthropist Santa and Mrs. Claus, better known as long-serving mayor Maureen Gaines Claus. A spunky Snowman narrates the love story of Mitchell Claus, head of Public Relations at Santas Workshop, and Daisy Scarlett, a village schoolteacher with world-changing dreams. Yuletide pandemonium ensues when Mitchell is named the campaign manager for his mothers critical re-election campaign at the same time a blackmail scandal breaks in Santas Workshop. Mitchell and Daisys little world starts to fall apart in a hilarious blizzard of current events as their fight to keep love alive takes the shape of a familiar tale.
See Amid the Winter Snow contains examples of:
- An Ass-Kicking Christmas: The climax of the play takes place on Christmas Eve and features an axe, a butcher knife, and a rifle used in combat.
- Bad Santa: Downplayed, as Santa is truly well-meaning, but its a little squicky finding out he opened a sweatshop to mitigate the problem global population growth posed for his business.
- Better Than a Bare Bulb: The Snowman narrator lampshades the play a bunch throughout the script, the most notable example being the entire exchange between Daisy and Wolf, who is dressed in Grannys nightgown attempting to lure Daisy to her death in a recreation of the plot of Red Riding Hood at Grannys House in the final scene.
- Big Bad: Romulus Wolf under alias Krampus, naturally.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: Played with. When the scandal breaks to the public, the media paints Santa Claus and Mayor Maureen as two power-hungry oligarchs to unite against, though the audience is meant to sympathize with them.
- Big Eater: Ida-Lynn, who brings an entire smorgasbord of Chinese food home with her and eats like six miniquiches off the hors doeuvre table in the span of a few minutes.
- Chekhov's Gift: A minor one, but Mitchell gifts Daisy her iconic coat early on in the play, which becomes notable in the plot shift toward Little Red Riding Hood.
- Chekhov's Gun: Overlaps with ChekhovsGag when we see Grannys home intruder lines of defense with the Red Ryder rifle and butcher knife both come into play in the fight against Wolf in Grannys living room.
- Christmas Elves: Naturally, though the elves in this play seem to have fully fleshed out lives beyond just making toys at Santas Workshop.
- Christmas Every Day: Invoked with the Snowmans description of the North Pole.
- Christmas Songs: Exaggerated, to the point of parody. Multiple times throughout the script, characters speak in Christmas song lyrics (and these instances are notably never lampshaded):
- Christmas Town: The North Pole, and how!
- Gratuitous French: Mitchell commenting on the three hens he bought for Daisy.
- The Krampus: Fictional in-universe, but invoked by Santas blackmailer, signing their letters with Krampus. Discussed when Idalynn asks Santa to explain what the blackmailer means by Krampus.
- Lemony Narrator: The Snowman, in spades.
- Little Red Fighting Hood: Daisy invokes this trope as she confronts the intruder at her Grandmothers House.
- Mrs. Claus: Maureen consciously averts most of the standard trope as a pantsuit politician, long-serving mayor of the North Pole running for re-election. Nonetheless, she is the loving wife of Santa Claus.
- Santa Claus: Deconstructed. His appearance and motivations are exactly as they are traditionally presented, though he has had to make some tough business decisions as the world has grown which leads to some unsavory outcomes (See Santa's Sweatshop below).
- Santa Clausmas: The religious origins of the holiday are not even given a passing mention.
- Santa's Sweatshop: Played with. Santas main workshop at the North Pole averts this trope, but in order to keep up with the growing world population, Santa opened a supplemental factory in China (only mentioned, never seen onstage). Santa himself never refers to it a sweatshop, but Mitchell does.
- The Three Wise Men: Parodied in the names of the union leaders: Goldsmith, Franken, and Murray.
- Twisted Christmas: Downplayed, but things get pretty dark when Romulus Wolfs true colors are revealed.
- Wham Line: Wolfs response to Daisy when she tells him that Ebenezer Whitfield is a fool. Lampshaded in the stage directions when it calls for Daisy to be visibly taken aback.
- Whole Plot Reference: Over the course of the second act, you realize See Amid is a feature-length retelling of Little Red Riding Hood.