It’s that time again, where Hallmark and Lifetime pump out clichéd hack after tropey dreck of a Holiday Film. By which I mean Christmas. Well tonight is Hanukkah and like Dana Piccoli, we could use some queer romance:
— Dana Piccoli (@DanaPiccoli) November 14, 2017
Last year, Dana came up with a few ideas, so here are mine!
Even if you skip the old hat of “It’s a Wonderful (Gay) Life” concepts, Christmas movies are all a paint by numbers affair.
- One character hates the holidays
- One character is too busy to enjoy them
- A cute child brings them together
- Christmas Magic happens
You can mix and match a little, but that’s basically it for every single Christmas movie I’ve ever seen.
- A female Christmas Tree Farm owner, who hates the season, and the super busy business woman who just needs a live tree for her building (and damn it, she’s not the secretary, why is she always treated like one?). The ending is them owning the farm together, obviously, selling live trees.
- A little kid decides the semi driver who delivers presents is Santa. Plot twist? She’s a woman and falls in love with the kid’s (straight) single mom. Christmas Magic, the mom realizes love exists beyond gender.
- An asexual man is playing Santa at a Mall and hates that he has to subscribe to heteronormativity and have a Mrs. Claus. Mrs. Claus is pansexual, and has an unrequited crush on a gender fluid person working the makeup counter. The elves decide to conspire and make some Christmas Love Matches, ending with Santa’s Mrs becoming his BFF, and renaming her Ms. Claus – Santa’s cousin.
This is a little harder, since Hanukkah doesn’t really lend itself to the same stories of love and family. Hanukkah is about fighting a war and then having magic oil. Most ‘heartwarming’ Hanukkah movies have been flat out weird. Look at Full Court Miracle (a Disney movie about a crappy Jewish school’s basketball team) or 8 Crazy Nights (Adam Sandler – Animated).
Glamour came up with a few movies that I’d actually like to see (the Barbra Streisand/Jeff Goldbum one looks amazing), but there’s literally no great or even seminal Hanukkah movie out there. Even the first ones I can come up with were impacted by Christmas impinging on the celebrations.
- A single Jewish mother whose wife died, meets a dashing ladies woman at a ‘Holiday Party’ where they bond over their dislike of Christmas music.
- The Hanukkah Miracle. A gay Jewish solider goes missing before Hanukkah after a raid gone wrong. His estranged family build a bridge and invite his agnostic boyfriend over for Hanukkah so he’s not alone. They teach him about how Hanukkah was the fight of a few against a larger group, and how they won. But the miracle was the oil, staying lit, until more could come home. Naturally the ending is the missing solider walking in the house just as everyone sings Ma’oz Tzur on the 8th night. Big gay kiss and everyone is happy.
- The candle maker in a small town is overrun by requests when a snowstorm prevents the shipment of Hanukkah candles from being delivered. Working day and night, she’s not going to make it until her ex-girlfriend (a former gambling addict) hitches up a team of dogs to a sled and braves the winter to deliver the supplies and bring a happy Hanukkah to everyone. The last scene would be them playing dreidel, only instead of swapping Gelt, they swap kisses. Awwwww.
Muslim Holidays are hard, because their Lunar Calendar system doesn’t lead to having a set ‘winter’ holiday. Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha come to mind as the two ‘major’ holidays. Both involve giving to charity, so you could easily cannibalize the concepts of 80% of all Christmas movies and toss them in. Turning them into romance would just need a nice meet-cute. Like …
- Every year, two men meet at their Mosque, giving to charity. One of them is always giving perfectly seasonable gifts (school supplies in August, winter clothes in December, etc etc) and the other falls in love over the thought and care.
Wouldn’t that be nice?
I don’t know enough about other religious to do them justice but what about you? What winter holiday romances would you like to see queered up?