Bah, Humbug!
Bah, Humbug!
By:, Categories: Words & Images, 3 comments



It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…or perhaps not, as the case may be in today’s photo, as I came across this vicious-looking wood-carved grizzly bear, with his  “Bah, Humbug” Father Christmas hat on his head during a recent meander around Glasgow’s Christmas market in St. Enoch’s Square. But talking of “Bah” and “Humbug”…


Unless you count spending quality time with my 20-year-old “good friend” Johnnie Walker, I don’t have a lot of Christmas traditions. Though sitting down on the sofa and watching old holiday movies is kind of one. Because you know how movies and TV shows and books that you experienced when you were a child often continue to hold a magic over you, even when you’re older. And one of my favourites is A Christmas Carol, the 1951 British version starring the great Scottish character actor Alastair Sim.


Although this is  often considered the best film adaptation of the Charles Dickens seasonal story by film buffs, it has added significance for me as this is the first one I ever saw as a child. I don’t remember how old I was when Sims’ version of A Christmas Carol was shown on TV. But it was the first version I saw, and it told the story really well; and Sim is simply sublime in the role.


Unlike Reginald Owen, in the 1938 Hollywood version, who came across as a stock mean person and then later as an abrupt and still stock happy person, or Albert Finney in his 1970 musical rendition (which I also fondly remember as a kid, following  a school Christmas treat to the cinema), Sim was psychologically believable as Dickens’ bitter miser. It’s hard to say “Bah, Humbug!” and make it seem like something you’re actually saying – but Sim carries it off with aplomb.


Leica M6 Classic & 2/35mm Summicron pre-asph v4

Ilford FP4+ (200)

HC-110 (Dil. B – 12 min)

Plustek 7600i & Vuescan