|“||Every who down in Whoville liked Christmas a lot, but the Grinch, who lived just north of Whoville, did not. The Grinch hated Christmas, the whole Christmas season! Now please don't ask why, no one quite knows the reason. It could be his head wasn't screwed on just right. It could be perhaps that his shoes were too tight. But I think that the most likely reason of all may have been that his heart was two sizes too small.||„|
|~ The narrator about the Grinch.|
The Grinch is the titular protagonist villain of Dr. Seuss' 1957 book How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, and its 1966 animated television adaptation of the same name. He later appeared in the 1977 Halloween television special Halloween Is Grinch Night, and the 1982 television special The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat, serving as the main antagonist in both.
In the original Christmas special, he was voiced by the late Boris Karloff, who was best known for portraying Frankenstein's Monster in Frankenstein. In Halloween is Grinch Night, he was voiced by the late Hans Conried, who also played Captain James Hook in Disney's Peter Pan. In The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat, he was voiced by the late Bob Holt.
The Grinch is described as hating any sort of happiness. He is very mean, selfish, sly, cunning and manipulative. Among his long list of things he hates are children, feasts, toys, and all forms of noise. He is also shown to be neglectful and outright abusive to his dog named Max, who he forces to wear a reindeer horn and pull his sled, even using a whip to drive him on.
In the Christmas special, Dr. Seuss also wrote a song that described how horrid the Grinch was.
In the 2018 movie, The Grinch is still a mean one, but significantly less of a mean one than previous versions, as he is portrayed as a grouchy cynic who prefers to mind his own business rather than actively hurt other people, will still be social when he needs to be, treats his dog well, and who decides to steal Christmas to prove a point rather than out of pure hatred for the Whos and the holiday.
Dr. Seuss' Grinch Night
|“||I'm sure gonna miss that Grinch Night ball. But that wind will be coming back someday... I'LL be coming back... someday...||„|
|~ The Grinch|
In this short film, the Whos live in fear that on certain nights when the "sour-sweet wind" blows, the Grinch will come down from Mount Crumpit with his Paraphernalia Wagon to terrorize Whoville. After the Whos board up inside. The Grinch sets out to do so, forcing Max to pull the wagon by himself. On his way, he amuses himself by chasing defenseless animals and running over flowers.
He is stopped by a young Who boy named Euchariah, who first encounters him by chance while lost on the way to the "euphemism" (outhouse), before determining to stall the Grinch so he can't reach Whoville. Euchariah repeatedly annoys the Grinch by doubting his skills in terrifying people, which provokes the Grinch into giving Euchariah a "first-class Grinching", by unleashing all of the spooks and frightening visions contained in the Paraphernalia Wagon on the boy. Euchariah stands his ground, until he realizes the wind has changed, which means the Grinch must return home. Max (tired of being the Grinch's slave) leaves to go with Euchariah, forcing the Grinch to drag the wagon up the mountain by himself. In his final scene, the Grinch reminds himself the wind will change again, and he will come back to torment Whoville someday.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
The Grinch appears here as the protagonist of the story as he stares down at Whoville, disgusted by the Whos and their noisy Christmas celebrations. His heart is also described to be three sizes too small due to his grumpy nature. Deciding that it was time to put an end to it, the Grinch plotted to steal Christmas. To that end, he created his own Santa attire and sleigh while having Max to serve as his sole reindeer.
Riding the sleigh down into Whoville where everyone is sleeping, the Grinch took the opportunity to steal away the decorations, gifts and food from every house in Whoville. However, he is nearly caught by a little girl named Cindy Lou Who while attempting to stealing her family tree, but cons his way out by fooling her into going back into bed under the ruse of fixing a broken light on the tree. After loading all the stuff into large bags on his sleigh, the Grinch gets Max to pull the sleigh up to the top of Mount Crumpit. With the burglary finished, the Grinch hopes of hearing imminent cries of sorrow, but unexpectedly, he instead hears everyone in Whoville singing in cheer, even without their presents and food.
Realizing now that he did not stop Christmas from coming, the annoyed Grinch starts to become very puzzled until he realized that Christmas is not about getting presents or having feasts, but by hanging out with family and friends. This allows his heart to grow three times bigger, which motivated the Grinch to lift up the sleigh with ease to keep it from falling over the cliff. With a change of heart, the Grinch rides his sleigh along with Max back to Whoville, returning all the stolen gifts and food to the Whos before joining them in a feast, even giving Max the first slice of roast beast.
The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat
|“||I've snurgled his sound, no I'll even do more. Take this up to my shop on the 39th floor - that Cat's gonna suffer like never before! Ha ha HA!||„|
|~ The Grinch, to Max.|
In this TV film, the Grinch faces off against the Cat in the Hat. At the beginning he wakes up cheerful, feeling happy about the world, until his reflection (his 'anti-conscience') reminds him that a Grinch is supposed to be evil, and orders him to prove he is a Grinch.
On this challenge, he sets out in his car to terrorize animals and people. He meets the Cat in the Hat having a picnic, and instantly dislikes him for his cheeriness and politeness. When the Cat calls him "Mr. Green-face", the Grinch chases him in his car, and decides to make the Cat his new victim. He starts subjecting the cat to his new inventions, including one that garbles any pleasant noise when the Cat tries to sing, and his Dark house, which makes the Cat unable to see in front of him.
After subjecting the Cat and a local restaurant to his machines, the Cat tries to figure out what the Grinch's weak spot is. On a sudden inspiration, the Cat, followed by a crowd of people, sings a song outside the Grinch's window telling him to remember his mother. Unable to shut the song out, the Grinch sees his mother's reflection in a puddle comforting him, and telling him "Be a good boy and clean up your room.". The Grinch takes his machines apart and feels cheerful again. When his reflection starts to reprimand him again, Max stops it by using the sound sweeper to shut it up.
In Other Media
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
- Main article: The Grinch (2000)
The Grinch appeared as the main protagonist of the 2000 live action film How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Universal Pictures.
He was portrayed by Jim Carrey, who also portrayed the Cable Guy in The Cable Guy, the Riddler in Batman Forever, and Stanley Ipkiss/The Mask in The Mask. As a child, he was portrayed by the late Josh Ryan Evans in his final role before his death in 2002.
The Grinch appears as the main protagonist and playable character in the 2000 video game based on the live-action film. The Grinch decides to destroy the Whos' Christmas. But when he loses his blueprints to his gadgets which end up scattering around the place, he is forced to go on a journey to collect them.
The player is given tasks to do, such as smashing presents and other mischievous things to torment the Whos. Max the Dog is also a playable character which the Grinch can use to gain access to areas to help him progress further. Along the way the player collects parts for the Grinch's sleigh, and once completed they are involved in a boss mission in which they chase down Santa Claus in his sleigh and shoot him down.
But like the film and book, the Grinch realizes the Whos are still happy. Once his heart grows he returns to Whoville and apologizes for his actions.
The Grinch (2018)
- Main article: The Grinch (2018)
The Grinch appeared as the main protagonist villain of the 2018 Illumination animated film The Grinch.
The live-action version of the Grinch appeared as the main antagonist of the Robot Chicken sketch "How the Nerd Saved Christmas", where he visits the human world and steals all of decorations and gifts from the people. The Nerd goes to get everything back, only to find the Grinch is the live-action version and not the cartoon version. The Nerd is angry because of this, and pushes the Grinch off a cliff just to satisfy his rage, claiming it is because he "took one of the best Christmas specials ever and pissed in its mouth".
Powers and Abilities
Several versions of the Grinch (The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat, the live action film) portray him as an inventor. In the former film, he invents several machines designed to spread evil and misery, including his vacu-sound-sweeper, a machine that sucks out pleasant noises and makes them sound garbled, or projects them out of the wrong mouth, and his dark-house, a tower that sends a beam of darkness anywhere he projects it. He can also change the beams to turn things different colors or patterns, and presumably make objects move on their own.
In Halloween is Grinch Night, the Grinch appears as more of an evil magician. In this film, he drives a paraphernalia wagon, a large cart holding a variety of monstrous creatures he uses to terrify people. In this film, he also has the power to detach his eyebrows, make them grow to an enormous size, and make them fly around on their own.
- Dr. Seuss admitted in interviews that he based the Grinch on himself when he felt ambivalence towards Christmas. As a hint, the Grinch mentions he has put up with Christmas "for 53 years"; Seuss was 53 years old when the book was published.
- Though he is almost always described as green, it is only in the 1966 cartoon that he became that color, on the suggestion of the late director, Chuck Jones. Dr. Seuss thought he should be gray, as he was drawn in the book.
- The story The Hoobub and the Grinch that is included in Horton and the Kwuggerbug and more Lost Stories implies that there is more than one Grinch suggesting that The Grinch may actually be a species.