Back in 2014, the mainstream media was more than eager to cover the massive hack of Sony Pictures. The war on Christmas, however, seems to be the only explanation for why they’ve failed to cover the recent hack of Hallmark Movie Studios’ Holiday Division. (The nonexistence of Hallmark Movie Studios’ Holiday Division and therefore the nonexistence of its hack might also explain their silence.)
Unlike with the Sony hack, most of the material released in the Hallmark cybercrime was rather boring stuff—memos about mini Bundt cakes in the Hugs and Self-Actualization room, etc. However, the most exciting piece of maliciously leaked material was the screenplay for an upcoming Christmas movie.
For those who complain that Hallmark movies are painfully formulaic, this one is a welcome relief—a unique and daring film with the courage to make bold narrative choices and form original character arcs. As a Christmas gift, here are some of the best bits of the script. Let’s begin at the beginning.
If you’re worried that this is yet another poorly developed Hallmark heroine with no purpose other than to serve as a stand-in for the viewer, don’t fret. Carol is far from the average upper-middle-class white woman’s idealized self. Exhibit A:
After a fun title sequence that introduces us to the snow-covered Southern California town of Christmas Cove, Carol meets her prospective Prince Charming.
While Carol prepares his order, April urges her to give the gorgeous mourner her number. But alas, he leaves unexpectedly. In a regular Hallmark movie, this kind of impassible conflict is where the film normally ends, but with this genre-defying flick? Get ready for a major plot twist.
Carol tracks Dave down and, after 17 minutes of romantic stammering, he manages to ask her out, whereupon we discover the story’s great conflict.
It hurts Carol that Dave is still hung up on his dead wife, despite knowing Carol for a solid two days now, but she soldiers on and their relationship blossoms. Dave even opens up by sharing some more backstory.
Carol remembers Dave’s love for the Eiffel Tower and thoughtfully buys him a photograph of it as a Christmas gift, which she intends to deliver on Christmas Eve. Sounds like a great resolution to the story, right? Well, we’ve still got 20 minutes to kill, princess.
Carol is convinced that it is what it looks like, but she doesn’t let the heartbreak keep her from fulfilling her responsibilities at her minimum-wage job that she doesn’t need but still works because she is a woman of industrious character. But prepare yourself—this is not your typical Hallmark fable meant to teach women the perils of giving their hearts to emotionally wounded strangers. There’s a happy ending on the way.
The Mystery Woman, who is probably named Jenna or Monica, leads Carol to the town square, where Dave puts on a big production of “Deck the Halls.” Unlike those typical restrained Hallmark finales, this time, the entire cast of quirky characters participates in the celebration:
Finally, at the conclusion of the final verse, Dave falls on one knee, unveils a shimmering diamond, and:
Ending with an over-the-top, punny moment of romantic fulfillment? This is a truly original variation on the standard holiday fare from Hallmark, yielding an absolute cinematic gem that should finally put to rest that old theory that Hallmark Christmas movies are so predictable because they’re written by a form of artificial intelligence that’s teaching itself to understand human behavior to eventually launch all of our nukes and enslave us in a post-apocalyptic future.
Oh, and I nearly forgot! The title: