I was going to save this one for a few more days, but I’m feeling pretty testy this morning. Anyone who’s an avid reader has doubtless heard about Ms. Pamela McColl’s decision to republish Clement Moore’s classic poem “The Night Before Christmas” in a bowdlerized form which omits all references to the act of Santa smoking a pipe. I’m thus presenting the Dell Comics 1944 (uncensored) version of the poem on my blog for public consumption today for several reasons: it’s a great poem, it’s wonderfully illustrated, and because I wish to opine that I consider Ms. McColl to be a complete idiot. I invite her to read up a bit on Thomas Bowdler as well as on the subsequent reactions to Bowdler’s “work” to discover the low esteem in which he and his spiritual followers (like Ms. McColl) are held.

As far as today’s comic tale is concerned, I especially appreciate the illustration on page four because Santa’s smoking a HUGE pipe in a comic book and, best of all, there’s not one damned thing you can do about it, Ms. McColl. (God, that name – she even sounds like she’s some spinster librarian.)

So, ma’am, in the words of the great Chuck Berry, “Merry Christmas, baby”.

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

The Night Before Christmas – Santa Claus Funnies #61, 1944

As always, thanks to the folks at The Digital Comic Museum for preserving classic comics for all of us to enjoy!

Have fun! — Steve

Copyright 2012, Steven A. Lopez. All rights reserved.

Advertisements