(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips from Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas. The song "Deck the Halls" plays in the background)
Doug (vo): Well, I looked at the first one, only figures to look at the sequel during this sequel month. It's Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas, and you know, when people ask what's the difference between something that's good for kids yet not necessarily for adults, or bad for kids and not necessarily for adults either, this is a perfect example. The first, Once Upon a Christmas, was a simple but humble and sweet story. It was expressive, it was kind, it was a little corny, but the effort really shows and pays off. This is a cash-in you can smell from a mile away. Just look at it. I mean, look at it! I know it's direct-to-DVD, so the CGI isn't gonna be like Pixar quality, but...look at it! The first one was direct-to-DVD, too, and you can see all the great drawings, all the great atmosphere, expressions. It was impressive by its own standards. This, even by its own standards, is cheap-looking, and lame, and not written well, and heartless, and empty, and just, like I said, an obvious cash-in!
Story and review Edit
Doug (vo): Okay, well, I guess I should go over all the stories, but that almost seems pointless, because where in the first film, it was only three stories that seemed reasonable enough, this one, it's like eight*. Yeah, they just throw a bunch of them at you whether it makes sense or not. It becomes so much overload that the motivations aren't even established when the stories start.
- Actually, there are five segments.
(Clips of the first story, Belles on Ice, are shown)
Doug (vo): The very first story is just Daisy and Minnie skating. Well, okay, that's fine. But for whatever reason, Daisy tries to sabotage Minnie. Was that in her character? Is that something she's known for? I can see Donald doing that, but nothing about her has ever been established as this egotistical jealous character. And then Minnie gets really angry, too, and she starts fighting back, and it's just this entirely pointless number.
(Clips of the fourth story, Donald's Gift, are shown)
Doug (vo): There's another kind of mean-spirited story where Donald comes home from work, he's really tired, he just wants to relax. But then, Daisy and the boys all want to go Christmas shopping, and they force him to come with. He gets angry, because Christmas is being shoved in his face and he just needs a break from it, but...he shouldn't be. He's wrong. Much like Christmas with the Kranks, you should just accept everything about Christmas and love it all unconditionally. Seems like a very confused message. On the one hand, I can kind of see what they're going for, like you're just gonna need that extra effort to make Christmas special for your kids and your loved ones and stuff. But first of all, they're his nephews, not his kids. I still don't know where their damn parents are. Second, you sympathize too much for him. I want him to be by the fireplace, I want him to have his hot chocolate, I don't want him to go out to the store and have all this commercialism shoved in his face. Somewhere, there's a sweet, nice idea trying to get out, but it's just lost.
(Clips of the third story, Christmas Maximus, are shown)
Doug (vo): There's also this lame number about Max bringing his girlfriend to meet his dad, and most of it's a pop song that he's not really singing. Yeah, you never see his lips move, and the song doesn't really match the atmosphere. They're trying to make it sound like one of those songs you can hear on the radio, but it's not even vague enough to be a song you can hear on the radio. They're obviously saying, "The dad's gonna embarrass me, I hope he doesn't embarrass me around Christmas." They can't even get whoring the fake pop song right! Nobody would listen to this on their own, but the character's clearly not singing this song either, so it's just entirely confused! Remember how Santa Claus was a big deal in the first one, like Goofy and Max were trying to believe, but they didn't know if they did, but they wanted to believe? That was a whole big thing.
(Clips of the second story, Christmas: Impossible, are shown, mostly focusing on Santa Claus)
Doug (vo): In this one, Huey, Dewey and Louie just mail themselves to Santa. Yeah, I guess he's not really that big a deal anymore. And look at him. Talk about the most generic, forgettable Santa you can imagine.
(Various clips resume showing)
Doug (vo): All right, all right. Are there any good things about this special? I guess the colors can be kind of nice and Christmas-y. Every once in a while, there's a good visual joke or a line here or there. But for the most part, it just feels shallow.
Final thought Edit
Doug (vo): I guess it seems silly to be this hard on a little Christmas special that's obviously just meant for little kids, but the first one was just a little Christmas special meant for little kids, and...they really did a much better job. They cared, they took the time to write good stories and put in good animation, because...it felt like the respect of the audience was important. They know they can show little kids anything with Donald and Goofy and Mickey and stuff, but instead, they try to give something really nice and meaningful, and that's felt by the adults as well as the children. This just feels like what it most likely is, a last-minute sequel. The first one probably made a lot of money, so they had to squeeze out a sequel, and this is what we got: a cheap knock-off with little-to-no heart. I can't say it's as bad as some of Disney's other worst animated films, I mean, I can't say Chicken Little or Home on the Range or Mulan II. But it just feels...lazy. And don't get me wrong, I don't know how much time or money they had to put into this, so I shouldn't judge, but it's just how it feels. It feels lazy. Can you show it to kids? Sure. Does it get across any mean-spirited or bad morals? A little debatable, but none that little kids would probably get. It's just a weak Christmas cash-grab and nothing more. If your kid's really dying to see it, I guess it's okay to show, but in my opinion, I'd just put on the first one again.
(The final scene, showing all the characters together singing Christmas carols, is shown)