Hallmark Channel Christmas Movie: Miss Christmas

Date of airing: November 5, 2017 (Hallmark Channel)
Nielsen ratings information: 3.623 million viewers, 0.59 with Adults 18-49, 0.37 with Adults 18-34, 0.81 with Adults 25-54, 2.42 with Adults 50+

Maybe, just maybe, this can be considered one of the better Hallmark Channel Christmas movies, thanks to the fact that it didn’t follow the usual formula like a Republican politician is following Orange Hitler Donald Trump during an election cycle. Yes, MISS CHRISTMAS had all the pieces that get you to win Hallmark Christmas Bingo again (the city woman coming to Smalltown, America; the city woman being the one with the Christmas spirit as she is trying to convince her future husband to like Christmas; an African-American boss, co-worker or best friend; and this time, both central characters lost a parent), but there was something to the story that made the movie feel more natural than the other ones I have watched during the Countdown to Christmas seasons in 2016 and 2017, and in addition to that, even the snow felt real for a hot second. I mean, I don’t think there are a lot of Hallmark Channel movies with divorced characters (even if Sam only mentioned his divorce once on the fly, just to satisfy viewers who were asking to know where Joey’s mother is) and I don’t even know if I have seen a Hallmark Channel Christmas movie, in which “snow” actually fell on the characters’ heads before, even if that snow kind of looked like it was coming straight out of a computer, while at least one piece of white feather did land on Brooke D’Orsay’s real hair. I also don’t know if I have seen a Hallmark Channel Christmas movie, in which the romance plot was thickly put onto the cake, and then gravied up like it was time for the turkey dinner on Christmas Day.

Brooke D’Orsay was pretty cute in her role as Holly, and Marc Blucas, although I am not a fan of the guy because he didn’t take Buffy Summers seriously and screwed up their relationship by getting sucked on by prostitute vampires, didn’t annoy me at all as Sam during these 83 minutes. Both Sam and Holly were different people (which means they were destined to be with each other), but the writing was serious enough about their story to make their journey more intriguing than other Christmas love stories. It’s almost like I cared enough about Holly and Sam for me to want to see them getting together by the end of this experience, and I usually don’t feel like that even in Hollywood romantic comedies. The story was helped along by the fact that Holly returned to Klaus right before the romantic climax, just so the distance between herself and the life she always wanted can be felt. I mean, this was a moment during which the character was allowed to cry — consider this an early Christmas present for me.

In this white-collar story, everyone has an Apple device.

But yeah, the supporting cast was once again not that important, since they weren’t involved in B and C plots that had anything to do with the main storyline of the movie, and that those supporting characters weren’t included, because the producers apparently figured they were spending enough time on getting Holly and Sam together and have him feel the spirit of Christmas again. Sometimes I would wish for Hallmark films to focus on the supporting characters a little more, to showcase more variety when it comes to the premise of a boy and a girl falling in love in a small town during Christmas time. The world doesn’t just exist in the eyes of the two central characters of these films — sidekicks are allowed to have an existence, too.

The story about the Christmas tree in the meantime… Well, let’s laugh about it. I have no idea what it’s like to work to get a Christmas tree in front of a huge building (or what kind of pressure that could bring for the man or woman working behind the project), but I found the whole drama of the time pressure extremely ridiculous. Instead of going through the fan mail (the ones that advertised the next Christmas tree from whichever backyard the letter came form) months ahead of the time the new Christmas tree needed to be donated, delivered, and placed for decorating, Holly and her BFF and sorta-sister Erin decided to open the letters close to one week before the deadline. I could understand when the letters only came in during the past week or two and Holly already had a tree in mind, which screwed up her situation almost at the wrong time, but when you are in need of finding a tree and don’t know where to look at first, you should be racing through that fan mail — Holly could have saved a day or two, if she had decided to speed through those letter, and she would have had one or two extra days with Sam. Maybe the “misunderstanding” wouldn’t have happened either.

It’s time for the annual family ugly sweater contest.

The other thing I laughed about was that Holly’s position with the Radcliffe Center was in jeopardy, because there was no tree standing in front of the building. First of all, looking for a tree takes time, and it’s not like Holly was past the deadline. She did find a tree after all, only it became usable mere weeks before the deadline, which is something the company behind Holly’s boss should have thought about. Secondly, what was Holly doing during the other eleven months as creative director of the center, if her job was contingent on whether she gets the tree up on time or not? The board can’t just be so stupid to fire Holly for one single failure, while she might have worked herself into some excellence during the rest of the year? Hey, Radcliffe Center why u so stupid? Well, it’s unimportant anyway, because Holly quit to follow her heart, but still, it was a story that made me laugh and see MISS CHRISTMAS in a negative way for a minute or two.

Also, Holly and her volunteers managed to decorate Sam’s tree within a day, even though Erin and Andrea were panicking back in Chicago, because the tree needed four days to be decorated. When plot conveniences are extremely convenient, you get to that point of the story. By the way: Let’s give a hand for Crystal Balint as Andrea, who had the only non-white speaking role of this Hallmark Channel Christmas movie. Baby steps? Probably not, because Andrea is part of the Hallmark Christmas Bingo card, and we all won this round.

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