Ho. Ho. Ho.
December 23, 2010 1:32 PM   Subscribe

A Beijing graphics design house makes with the stylish and creepy in a Neil Gaiman adaptation of his tongue-in-cheek mini-story, "Nicholas Was."
posted by Kitteh (9 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Stylish, creepy, and betraying almost a complete lack of understanding of the story. The payoff is in the final three words. Making the theme of the story clear from the outset defeats the purpose.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 1:36 PM on December 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


since all holidays are Halloween to me..... me likey berry much
posted by Redhush at 1:37 PM on December 23, 2010


Gotta go with ricochet biscuit on this one. Beautiful animation, but the whole point of Nicholas was (for me) is the dawning realisation of what the story is about.
posted by Iteki at 1:47 PM on December 23, 2010


Incidentally, if anyone wants to read the excellent short short story without having it spoiled by misguided animators, here it is.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:01 PM on December 23, 2010


Stylish, creepy, and betraying almost a complete lack of understanding of the story. The payoff is in the final three words. Making the theme of the story clear from the outset defeats the purpose.

Wait, am I missing something about the:

Ho.

Ho.

Ho.

?

The animation was pretty spot-on in my opinion.
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 5:19 PM on December 23, 2010


Neil himself was pretty impressed by this animation, so much so he's soliciting other people's interpretations.
With no snark at all, you still have time (though not much!) to do your own version of the story, if you think this is inadequate, and send it to Neil.
posted by sandraregina at 7:43 PM on December 23, 2010


Wait, am I missing something about the:

I think perhaps you are. There is nothing in the story as written that reveals (or more to the point, confirms) the identity of the main character until the final lines. The dawning realization of the reader that it is a familiar story from a new and disturbing point of view is to my thinking what makes it work.

Gaiman does this not infrequently in his short fiction: see Snow, Glass, Apples for another example. Of course, once the reader is alerted to there being a reversal, he will be on guard for this. It was like the post-Sixth Sense era where for a few years it seemed every third movie was marketed as having "a twist you will never see coming!!!!" If we know there is a twist, we will be on the lookout for it and will of course see it coming: if studio marketing departments were any brighter than algae, they would realize this.

Now, you can of course still admire the craft of the prose without having the chance to discover on your own what it is actually about, but then again, you can enjoy Citizen Kane's visuals even if you know what Rosebud is, but you will never see it the same way the first audiences did. And for what it's worth, Gaiman is not all that concerned with the spoilerage: it was first published in, I think, Angels and Visitations, and his introduction mostly gave it away.

Anyway, I really enjoyed the story when I first read it. I find it dismaying that someone coming into it new through this admittedly pretty animated version will be denied the chance to enjoy it the same way. I think it is more through ignorance than spite that the animators have given away the game, but that doesn't make it any less stupid.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:58 AM on December 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


No, please tell us how you really feel. :)
posted by Kitteh at 12:50 PM on December 24, 2010


Now, you can of course still admire the craft of the prose without having the chance to discover on your own what it is actually about, but then again, you can enjoy Citizen Kane's visuals even if you know what Rosebud is, but you will never see it the same way the first audiences did. And for what it's worth, Gaiman is not all that concerned with the spoilerage: it was first published in, I think, Angels and Visitations, and his introduction mostly gave it away.


OH SHIT IT WAS SANTA?!

Seriously though, now I'm bummed out. I absolutely LOVE Neil Gaiman, but I had never read this poem before. I read it a few days ago, but it was presented as "CHECK OUT THIS AWESOME CHRISTMAS POEM", so I didn't get to experience the mounting realization bit.

Bummer.
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 4:29 PM on December 24, 2010


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