A Workaday Santa: Raymond Brigg's "Father Christmas"
December 09, 2009
[BUMP from 12/20/05.../07] Raymond Briggs' is famous for the amazing Snowman book and animated short with its lovely song. He also wrote a charming Santa book.
"Father Christmas" is a look at the British Santa on his big day. He prefers a quiet life but he's got a job to do and does it well despite the bother. It's set up in a comic book panels format with a lot of lovely, slow action on every page.
FC gets up on the big day and takes care of his animals first, has tea on the stove, uses his outhouse, has a nice breakfast, grumbles about the weather report then off he goes into the skies to do his job.
He has a great little shoulderbag (pure OYB style) that he packed his lunch into earlier and stops mid-night, bracing his back on some lonely roof chimney to have a break. Later on he meets a milkman who asks how he's gettin on, not bad.
Every scene is painted wonderfully.
When he gets home he takes care of his animals again, gets his dinner in the oven, has a nice bath and then a simply great meal, on the small side but with style.
I'm going to make a figgy pudding for Xmas myself. Inspired, I am.
One of the best Santa books out there, easily.
Here's a link for ordering the book... Hardcover edition of "Father Christmas". It looks like you can get a video of this story, too. I bet it's really nice. In fact I just ordered one.
Briggs' also did "The Snowman," which was turned into an Oscar-nominee animated film with a marvelously hauntingly lovely musical score. Get an (apparently out of print) copy here.
Man, Ray does good work. It's all "must see."
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