Over the years, countless horror movies have perverted Christmas traditions, characters and iconography in glorious ways, from Silent Night, Deadly Night‘s killer in a Santa suit to the evil, deadly little gingerbread men in Michael Dougherty’s Krampus. No stone has been left unturned by the genre’s fascination with turning the happiest time of the year into the deadliest, and a search through the “Christmas Horror” sub-genre will turn up killer elves, killer snowmen and killer Christmas trees. And yes, there’s now even a Mrs. Claus horror movie.
But one of the very best fusions of Christmas and horror came not in a feature film, but rather a toy line. I’m referring to McFarlane’s Twisted Christmas, which came down the chimney back in 2007. It was the fifth and final series of the McFarlane’s Monsters line, which saw Todd McFarlane and his twisted team reimagining classic tales in their own style.
Six figures were included in the Twisted Christmas series, each of them putting a naughty twist on beloved holiday characters. In McFarlane’s version of the holiday season, Santa Claus is a gas mask-wearing freak with Freddy Krueger-style gloves, while Mrs. Claus is a sexy stripper (the original Mrs. Claus figure featured brown hair, but a blonde variant was also released.)
Three of Santa’s little helpers were packaged together for the series, wielding deadly sharp weapons and ready to defend Santa at all costs. The big guy’s red-nosed pal was also reimagined by McFarlane as “Reindeer Rudy,” wielding a battle axe and featuring a gaping mouth filled with razor sharp teeth. Go ahead. Laugh and call him names. I dare you.
The final two figures in the Twisted Christmas series were the massive Jack Frost and a mutant killer snowman, both of which would be right at home in John Carpenter’s The Thing: The Holiday Special. The two frozen monstrosities look like the most deadly tag team of all time; Jack Frost is like a frozen Groot gone horribly wrong, while the snowman is a spider-like beast.
I absolutely love the character designs for the Twisted Christmas series, and each one could quite frankly lead a horror movie of their own. But imagining all of them joining forces for McFarlane’s Twisted Christmas: The Movie is something I’ve been doing since I first laid eyes on them in 2007, and it’s one fantasy movie that I’m still very much craving here in 2018.
It could truly be the ultimate Christmas horror movie of all time. But for now, at least we’ve got the Twisted Christmas toys to play with. A true gift from the Holiday Horror Gods!