Cue the Doctor to be insufferable again -- "Tamed the sky? What does that mean?" -- and they talk about how Scrooge is very, very important and the Doctor doesn't know who he is, and then before you know it he's threatened Scrooge's very life if they don't save Amy from her sex boat. Finally the Doctor leaves, and Scrooge tosses the Cratchits out as well, with glorious aplomb: "And next time, try and find me some funny poor people!"
But then, one thrown piece of something later, he raises his hand to hit Tiny Tim and the Doctor gets all manner of stern about that, but then he doesn't hit Tiny Tim, and this is a sign that Scrooge is not all bad, so a tiny rainbow of stars flies across the screen, because we've all learned something: Hitting people is bad! We hate people who hit children! We're good people, the good folks who don't care for child-hitters. Soak up your feelings about that, it really sets you apart. From all those people out there who condone child abuse.
There's two kinds of cynicism: The kind that says the world is awful, which is lazy and a good way to care about nothing. And then there's the kind that sells you self-righteousness as an antidote. Neither of them are actually about doing anything about anything, but at least one of them feels good. In play here, I can't decide. I just know I'd rather not have to worry about it when I can watch the Doctor flapping his hands around, of which he does a jolly load in this episode, because whether or not we're being sold something I don't believe for a second that he's got any cynicism in him at all.
The Doctor figures out that Scrooge was himself a beaten child, but not by the obvious signs of him hitting a kid, no: By the arrangement of chairs around the room, all of which face away from the dour face of Scrooge Senior's portrait on the wall. Moffatt's like a person who's read a lot about human beings in the library, and certainly rereads his own scripts for inspiration on a regular basis, but never actually met a real example of either. I sure hope this episode ends with a bunch of sappy music and people hugging in a montage. That will be super Christmassy.