How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

As the early nights draw in closer and the winter weather settles in, we would like to tell you about our teams favourite Christmas character, The Grinch! As The Grinch is within our licencing portfolio, we thought we would teach you a little about the Grinch and his history…

‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas!’ is a Christmas children’s story by Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel written in rhymed verse with illustrations by the author. It follows the Grinch, a grouchy, solitary creature who tries to cancel Christmas by stealing Christmas gifts and decorations from the homes of the nearby town of Whoville on Christmas Eve. Miraculously, the Grinch realizes that Christmas is not all about money and presents.

The Grinch is a creature with a heart “two sizes too small.” He resides in a cave on Mount Crumpit, a steep mountain north of Whoville, home of the cheerful and warmhearted Whos. Having been annoyed by Whoville’s noisy Christmas festivities for fifty-three years, the Grinch decides to stop Christmas from coming. He disguises himself as Santa Claus and travels to Whoville on a sleigh with his dog Max. The Grinch slides down the chimney of the first house on the square and steals all the presents, the food for the feast, and the Christmas tree. He is briefly interrupted in his burglary by Cindy Lou Who, a young Who girl, but concocts a crafty lie to help his escape.

After doing the same to the other houses, the Grinch takes his sleigh to the top of Mount Crumpit and prepares to dump the stolen belongings into the abyss. As dawn breaks, he expects to hear the Whos crying, but is shocked to hear them singing a joyous Christmas song instead. The Grinch comes to realise that Christmas “means a little bit more” than just presents and feasting, causing his shrunken heart to grow three sizes larger. The reformed Grinch returns the Whos’ presents and food, and is allowed to take part in their Christmas feast.

The story was published as a book by Random House in 1957, and at approximately the same time in an issue of Redbook. The book criticises the commercialisation of Christmas and the holiday season.

The book has been adapted many times, first as a 1966 animated TV film narrated by Boris Karloff, who also provided the Grinch’s voice. In 1977, a Halloween prequel, Halloween Is Grinch Night, aired with the Grinch voiced by Hans Conried. These were followed with a 2000 live-action feature film starring Jim Carrey, a 2007 musical, a 2018 computer-animated film starring Benedict Cumberbatch, a 2020 live television adaptation of the musical starring Matthew Morrison, and a 2022 slasher horror film adaptation starring David Howard Thornton.

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