This is the first full recap I've written since returning from up north, and consequently the first chance I've had to thank Wing and Glark in a public forum for their ridiculously comprehensive digital cable -- er, I mean "hospitality." Also, hi Sars. Just because.
Fade up on a nighttime shot of O Little Town of Roswell, the jaunty, Christmas-themed soundtrack, lighted wreaths hanging from newly-emergent Dickensian lampposts, and unsettling absence of the expression "we have to do something, Maxwell" within the first twelve seconds all conspiring to alert us that this is a stand-alone holiday episode, and we should abandon all hope of continuity, ye who enter here. Panning across Main Street, we see only half of a green banner advertising "Roswell's 23rd Annual" something, the rest of which I suspect reads, "Half-Assed Stab At A Cheesy Theme Party Somehow Involving Maria DeLuca Singing…This Month ALONE." Down on street level, a thirtysomething Dad prototype hitches a Christmas tree to the roof of a respectable, dark-colored SUV and turns to his impeccably dressed blonde daughter holding her pink teddy bear and politely requests she "go grab that bag of mistletoe." Holy domestic bliss, Batman! When did "the societal construct of Suburbia" get its own product-placement department? Anyway, Cherubic Near Orphan looks adoringly up at her father with that all-I-want-for-Christmas-is-my-two-parent-family-my-two-parent-family-yes-my-two-parent-family gaze, before obeying his request and running off to complete the errand with as much "I love you dead guy -- er, I mean 'Daddy'" emoting as she and her small, near-orphaned frame can possibly muster.
On her journey, she runs through an outdoor Christmas tree vending locale and right past Max "Have Your Pecs A Merry Little Pecs-mas" Evans and his non-right non-hand non-man Michael "That Shook When He Laughed Like A Bowlful Of Jelly" Guerin. Michael, hunched over and shaking and doing his overall best impression of Acting Cold For Dummies while standing on a toasty LA soundstage representing an even toastier desert southwest, clutches a hot cup of Weather Channel and reports to Maxwell that "it's freezing out here" and begs him to "pick a tree." Max responds that it's "not so simple," adding that the tree needs to fall within "certain parameters," indicating an elaborately-drawn diagram starring a tree and reading "Douglas Fir" across the top to illustrate this point. He adds, "You know how Isabel gets this time of year." Michael makes like Basil Exposition's helmet-wearing cousin Rupert, who's spent most of his non-expository life locked away deep in the Exposition family's attic, as he garbles in response, "The Christmas Nazi, driving everyone insane while trying to have the perfect Christmas."
Hmmmm. Maybe I'm not the most appropriate spokesman for political correctness in everyday speech (see recent, indefensible "helmet-wearing" reference for a bit more on this. And I can't even count on two hands how many "make the yuletide gay" nicknames I kicked around for Max for this holiday-themed episode), but "Nazi"? Won't the statute of limitations barring cavalier use of that word not expire for, like, another five thousand years? Especially when used in reference to The Most Aryan Woman In Show Business? I guess I missed the evolution in language when that word shifted in meaning from "one of Hitler's minions who willfully assisted in the systematic annihilation of eleven million people during World War II" to "a little controlling and stuff." Ah, well. Semitic, semantic. Around the holidays, it's all the same. Whatever. Sorry. A choir of children just appeared outside my window singing "Away In A Soapbox" in delightful harmony. I threw them down a quarter to go fetch me the biggest Christmas turkey there was in the whole market. So I guess I'll get back to that whole "recapping" thing now. Now that we're alone again. ["For the record, I -- who recently got voted one of the ten biggest WASPs on the Web -- found that a little offensive too. You don't put 'Christmas' and 'Nazi' together. Hi. Kristallnacht. Look it up. Okay, we're done here." -- Sars]