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Happy Holidays, Gasmii! Now that we’ve all recovered from our Turkey Day Food Coma and survived the Black Friday shopping insanity, it’s time to start trudging our way through the holiday season. And you all know what that means… circling parking mall shopping lots to find a space that’s NOT 2.5 miles away from the entrance; hours of store-hopping searching for the perfect gifts for people we love and the cheapest gifts for those we’re obligated to purchase for (i.e. our in-laws); carpal tunnel syndrome from writing out umpteen Christmas cards and envelopes, throwing out our backs dragging decorations down from the attic, up from the basement, or falling off the ladder trying to put them up in subzero weather; and taking several steps closer to obesity from gorging on christmas cookies and fruitcake, liver disease from getting drunk on spiked egg-nog and other alcoholic beverages at every single holiday party we must attend, and avoiding contracting an STD when we inevitably engage in copy room sex at the annual office party.
So, for the next few weeks, we get to nurse countless hangovers, bouts of explosive diarrhea, and itchy burning crotch with ample servings of awful Christmas movies, courtesy of our favorite cable broadcasters. And I don’t know about you, but my favorites include anything with the promise of half naked men and cheesy romance. So, when I saw the previews for ABC Family’s Desperately Seeking Santa, I made a reservation with my living room couch, uncorked a bottle of Boones, and prepped myself to be anally penetrated by the holiday spirit.
Our story opens in the lovely urban sprawl of South Boston, notorious for thick accents, poverty, and the Irish mafia. Our heroine is a beautiful blond, perhaps best known to us here at TVGASM as Lisa, the daughter of sinister alien queen, Anna, on ABC’s failed reboot of V.
Amazingly, a lizard lies underneath the skin of this particular character too!
Nothing sells holiday romance better than a dead-behind-the-eyes actress with lovely flowing blonde locks. She stands at her closet, full of meticulously organized and frugally purchased clearance items. When she’s done applying makeup and gathering her stuff, she heads to work, where she cuts a long like at the outdoor coffee cart where the barista has her non-fat double caf ready and waiting for her. As she strides purposefully through the mall, she unleashes some OCD on her maintanence staff as they hang banners and erect the Christmas trees in crooked fashion. Her assistant shows up with an armful of reports for her, and we know from her loud clothes, big hair, and tacky jewelry that she’s the Made-For-TV Joan Cusack a la Working Girl of this story—the “authentic” South Bostonian with the heart of gold.
Curiously, these actors never bothered learning the Boston accent.
Conversely, Blond Leona Helmsley sees through all the holiday bullshit to the real spirit of the season—profitability.
As she continues her power march through the mall, the obligatory gays stop her to admire their handiwork in dressing her. I should have known that they gays were behind her closetful of clearance rack power suit fashion.
The Rachel Zoe Project rejects
Any true born-and-bred South Boston girl is incapable of pulling any ensemble together without at least one of the following: 1. Denim, 2. Plastic Jewelry, 3. Loud Prints, or 4. Stilettos. Something tells me Leona is several rungs into her corporate climb, and she’s about to hit the PlexiGlass ceiling.
Cut to a well-appointed conference room, where the mall managers have gathered for a pre-holiday meeting. Smarmy Boss Man reminds them that 35% of their annual profits are earned between Thanksgiving and Xmas. But that money is now in jeopardy with the proliferation of online shopping. How can they compete, thereby keeping their pockets bulging with Benjamins? Leona plays teacher’s pet by blurting out the correct answer—incentivizing customers to actually go to the mall smack dab in the middle of the ghetto to shop instead of doing it from the comfort of their homes.
Am I right? Where’s my prize?
Smarmy Boss Man proverbially pats Leona on the head, then issues a challenge. The manager with the biggest increase in sales will be promoted to VP of Marketing and Promotions for all the malls in the northeast. The losers—will be lucky to keep their jobs.
After the meeting, Leona runs into her corporate sell-out boyfriend, as evidenced by his slick over-confident demeanor and appropriately evil-looking goatee. Pretty soon, Leona will escape the ghetto and join him at corporate HQ to become the most powerful couple in Boston since Boston Rob and Jen.
Just wait until you see the Executive Restroom! The fixtures are trimmed in gold and they have $20′s instead of paper towels.
It’s a tall order for Leona, though, since her mall is the lowest performer of the bunch. Despite calling her mall, and all of South Boston a dump, Evil Goatee has faith that Leona can succeed. And sufficiently encouraged, she cancels a date in order to burn the midnight oil.
Back in South Boston, Leona confides in TV Joan Cusack about the promotion opportunity, wondering how they can convince the working class to spend their hard earned cash now that credit is a thing of the past and unemployment is rampant and running out for most people. Here’s a tip. Forget about the working class. If you’ve learned nothing else from the Real Housewives Franchise, target the former upper class ladies desperate to keep up appearances now that the sugar daddies’ bill folds have dried up. As they brainstorm ideas, they get distracted by loud music and rippled muscle. No, not Abercrombie and Fitch (the brand rights were likely way too expensive), but the industrious gays have stolen their marketing strategy for their Hot Topic meets Forever 21 ripoff store.
Yeah, that’ll grab my attention too!
Hunky men shilling sequined monstrosities on unsuspecting strippers in training. It works on Joan Cusack, who verbally commits to purchasing 3. Offhandedly, Leona comments that sex certainly does sell, and with that, the lightbulb goes off in her head, and she spends the rest of the night fleshing out her brilliant plan by clipping magazines and pasting together a collage on posterboard. What is this, 6th grade? It’s South Boston, so… yeah.
The next day, in her own, much smaller conference room, she’s gathered her minions to pitch her plan to transform her quaint ghetto mall into a cash cow—The Search for Sexy Santa.
I think I have this back issue of Playgirl somewhere in my porn collection.
TV Joan Cusack jumps for joy, likening it to American Idol, but with hot dudes. I beg to differ, TV Joan Cusack. It’s more like the Bachelorette—weeding through vapid pretty boys searching for the one with the least offensive personality to pin your hopes and dreams to until reality sets in, and the inevitable failure ensues, unless your names are Trista and Ryan. The winner here gets $10K in exchange for a nightly strip routine dance number, and the ladies get a photo op on Sexy Santa’s lap. The private lap dance in Santa’s Workshop is purely optional.
But before Leona can move forward with her new Sexy Santa, she has to fire the traditional one. Old Santa saunters up to her office, in full costume, ready to begin work for another season. But instead of fresh parchment to start composing his annual Naughty/Nice List, he’s handed a pink slip and sent on his merry way to take his place in the unemployment line. Even Santa Claus isn’t exempt from downsizing.
Buck up, Santa. I hear the Salvation Army is hiring.
Putting that ugly business behind her, Leona rolls out South Boston’s Search for Sexy Santa. With 28 Shopping Days left until Xmas, she arrives at the mall and cuts the long ass line once again at the coffee cart. Note to producers: if you’re gonna expect us to suspend disbelief, don’t try to make us buy that an outdoor coffee cart in the dead of a New England winter is gonna be just as popular, if not more so than your friendly neighborhood Starbucks. One freezing cold Average Joe doesn’t take too kindly to her entitled behavior, and steps out of line to call her out. This particular Average Joe is none other than Nick Zano, of What I Like About You and Cougar Town fame. He’s a very tasty morsel, and I’m excited to see his abs in their perfectly chiseled and tanned glory!
Of course, the only pissed off bystander is going to turn out to be male lead of this movie.
They spar a little bit, hurling insults at each other. He a lowly bike messenger, she a Beacon Hill princess. Entitled bitch vs. stupid slacker. Imagine their mutual surprise when they fall in love and live happily ever after. Since a blind person could see the plot of this movie from a million miles away, I doubt that qualifies as a spoiler.
Inside the mall, Leona, TV Joan Cusack, the Gays, and a guest panelist in the form of a local TV news reporter, sit down to begin the search as camera crews and a large crowd of bored housewives and single women watch.
(left to right) LA Reid, Ben Folds, Heidi Klum, Kara DioGuardi, and RuPaul
Men of all shapes, sizes, ages, and levels of metrosexuality vie for $10K prize and the title of Sexy Santa.
Introducing Frat Boy and Juicehead
Gramps and Male Stripper
and Teddy Bear
Then who should walk on stage to present his candidacy but the outspoken dude from the coffee cart line. They recognize each other and proceed to roll their eyes. He identifies himself as David Moretti. In the interview portion of the competition, he reveals that he loves Xmas and his dead mother would have gotten a huge kick out of the competition.
Looks like someone is using the oldest and dirtiest of tricks in the reality competition handbook—the Dead Relative Card
An audible “AWWWW!” rises up from the crowd, but Leona isn’t buying it. She tries to cut him off, but TV Joan Cusack steps in to let him finish. To lay claim to title of Sexy Santa, he pays tribute his mom by doing a dance routine he used to watch on TV with her.
SYTYCD? DWTS? Dance Your Ass Off?
He pulls out a Random Girl Friday to assist, and they awkwardly strut their stuff on stage while Leona looks on stonefaced.
Cut to the judges’ deliberations. Arguments are made for and against random contestants. Blue Steel is cute, along with Jungle Cat and Juice Head. When they get to Dead Mom’s head shot (and really, how does he even have a head shot!!! Even AI uses polaroids when they’re eliminating contestants during Hollywood week!), Leona does her best to cut him from the competition, but in order to keep things fair, they all agree to cast secret ballots. As Leona leaves the mall for the night, Dead Mom lingers outside, victim of a frozen bike lock. He pleads his case with the head judge, imploring her to be fair. Leona assures him that she’ll be fair.
You could offer sex in exchange for her vote. Just saying…
The lucky 3 finalists will be notified later that evening, but based on their first encounter, Dead Mom doesn’t look too confident in his chances. Leona walks away and Dead Mom wishes her a Merry Xmas, sure they’ll never cross paths again.
Later that night, Dead Mom arrives at this family’s Italian restaurant to discover everyone watching the news report on the Sexy Santa competition on TV. He receives some good natured ribbing from regular customers and his siblings working behind the bar. Papa Pizza, however, is not amused, tossing him an apron and telling him to get his late ass to work. We do learn that Dead Mom is going to school for something when he’s not helping out in the family pizzeria. Dead Mom’s sister shows up just in time to expedite some much needed exposition. In addition to a dead mother, the Moretti family has been battling Corporate Greed in the form of urban development, and winning the Sexy Santa competition will fund one last appeal before they’re put out of business.
I don’t care if we’re closing in a few weeks anyway. I’ll fire your ass if you’re late again!
Dead Mom points out that losing the restaurant would be like losing another family member. Consider the stakes raised, folks. Dead Mom assures his sister that they can start mourning because there’s no way he gonna win the competition, but just at that moment, his cell phone answers. And as luck would have it, it’s Leona Helmsley calling him back for the Sexy Santa finals.
The next day, the phones are ringing off the hook at the mall, and Leona fields media requests with a silly grin on her face. Her plan is working like a charm and thanks to the news report and a handful of good looking men, her mall is packed for the finals. Even Evil Goatee shows up for the festivities, I’m sure, to watch his employer’s bottom line swell. Dead Mom shows up late, but just in time for the lame choreography to begin.
Last I heard, Charlie’s Angels got cancelled.
His competition, Male Stripper and Frat Boy, both dance more convincingly than Dead Mom, but dammit if the crowd doesn’t LOVE our wholesome hottie. They cheer loudly, including Dead Mom’s own personal cheering section.
Can I pause for a moment here? Why do they have their shirts on? This whole thing would be much more SEXY, ergo in keeping with the nature of the movie’s central plot device, if they would just have their shirts off. Get with the times, ABC Family.
This is what a missed opportunity looks like.
Have you seen a Twlight movie? Prepubescent girls can handle the sight of exposed man nipples and rippling stomach muscles.
Leona takes the mic to begin the Q&A part of the final round. Why do they think they should be South Boston Mall’s Sexy Santa? Male Stripper takes center stage to respond, “Because I’m a hunk….” Then he drops his pants before finishing, “…. With a heart!” Revealing boxer briefs with hearts on them.
Psssst: This is a Christmas competition. Valentine’s Day is still 2 months away.
Frat Boy’s response is, “Because Boston shouldn’t be deprived of this… (gestures to his abs and then flexes his bicep)… for one minute longer!” Yeah, that argument would be much more convincing WITHOUT A SHIRT ON!
It’s Dead Mom’s turn, and he immediately pulls out reality show sympathy vote card #2 – I’m Doing This For My Struggling Family So That They Can Have A Better Life. He wants to be Sexy Santa to bring joy into people’s lives while helping his family at the same time. The crowd eats it up.
Winner Winner Chicken Dinner
By audience applause, the winner is chosen. It’s hard to tell who wins because the audio track laid over the video isn’t equivalent to the sheer size of the crowd. And because Leona doesn’t want Dead Mom to win, she calls for a tie between him and Male Stripper.
The scene cuts to Moretti’s again, where Dead Mom shows up late again. Everyone mistakes his sullen demeanor to mean that he lost the competition, and Pizza Papa tries to cheer him up by reminding him of his options: EMT training and med school. Ah, so Dead Mom wants to become a doctor so that he can save the lives of other people’s mothers. Not surprisingly, though, they’re just in time to see Dead Mom announced the winner on the news. FINALLY! Now I can start calling him Sexy Santa without feeling like I’m giving away the plot! Cheers go up in the restaurant, but Pizza Papa is worried that this crazy stunt is gonna interfere with school. Sexy Santa reminds him that it’s just for a few weeks and the $10K prize money will go a long way towards “tuitions and stuff.” Pizza Papa sees right through it, accusing his son of doing this to try and save the restaurant. It’s apparently an effort in futility, demanding that his son put the money in the bank and move on. Yeah, because that’s gonna happen.
The siblings take a pizza out back where Sexy Santa is sulking. He just can’t let go of the family’s restaurant without knowing that he’s done everything possible. What he actually says is, “How do we not do everything possible NOT to save it.” Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t he just say that they SHOULDN’T try to save the restaurant? Am I missing something? It’s a stupid made for TV Christmas movie. I’ve already burned enough brain cells on it. Moving on.
South Boston Sibling Solidarity
Pregnant Sister agrees that they have to fight, and the three of them cheers to Moretti’s, going rogue on one final attempt to Fight the Power.
Back at the mall, the Gays fit Sexy Santa for his Santa suit while his dancers stand by and drool over him. Awkward rehearsals get underway in a time wasting montage where we learn that Sexy Santa struggles with the physical demands of actual dancing while trying to squeeze in studying and hiring a lawyer to file the family’s last chance appeal.
But he soldiers on in pursuit of his Noble Crusade.
In advance of Opening Night, Sexy Santa makes an appearance at a Christmas tree stand in the mall parking lot. People are snapping pictures and Sexy Santa gives some 4 year old kid some baseball advice—don’t let anyone know you’re a Yankees fan. Coming from someone who knows, that’s very wise advice in Boston.
Why anyone would take their male toddler to meet a “Sexy Santa” is beyond me… unless he’s one of those gay dads!!!! HAHAHAHA!!!! BRILLIANT!
Meanwhile, Leona Helmsley watches from the sidelines trying to hide the fact that her ovaries just flipped. She calls him a big kid, and just as they’re starting to flirt, Evil Goatee boyfriend shows up again to congratulate Leona on the success of her promotion. He introduces himself to Sexy Santa, and as the boys exchange pleasantries, Leona looks at Sexy Santa with what can only be described as pure lust.
That’s a mighty big sack you have there, Santa!
The trance is broken when Evil Goatee whisks her away for their date, leaving Sexy Santa to get some rest for Opening Night.
Fast forward 24 hours, and the mall is packed yet again. The emcee opens the show, presenting Sexy Santa and the Reindeer Dancers. The much hyped dance number ensues without anything actually good about it. Sexy Santa goes out in the crowd and twirls around a middle aged lady before bringing up the white half of the Gays on stage to strut his stuff. More awkwardness follows as Sexy Santa and Random Girl Friday reprise their dance from the auditions and the show ends with a rather impressive lift that would make Carrie Ann Inaba explode in spasms of rage.
But Bruno just spontaneously orgasmed.
Backstage, everyone congratulates each other, and Leona in a moment of true abandon, shows up to reward her Sexy Santa with a hug. Slightly flustered, she shoos Sexy Santa back out into the crowd for pictures.
Fast forward to 7 Shopping Days Until Christmas, and the Sexy Santa promotion is still going gangbusters. Evil Goatee praises Leona on the great job she’s done.
Not since Tiffani has a mall been this packed.
Ever the business woman, she prods for info on her competition. They’ve chosen to do petting zoos and teeny-bopper concerts at the other malls, but he focuses her attention the primary issue here—a line that looks to be about 3 hours long. And even though they attracted a horde of people there, he wisely and greedily points out that people waiting in line aren’t people in stores spending their money. Suddenly concerned, Leona prompts Sexy Santa to stick to the game plan, 20 seconds with each person. Keep the line moving. Sexy Santa, adorably defiant, tells a little girl that he’s got all the time in the world for her.
I don’t care about Corporate Greed. My job is to impart holiday cheer.
Leona gets angry with him… not because he’s taking too long, but because that little girl will eventually realize that Santa isn’t real, and he’ll be contributing to her getting crushed by reality. She storms off, and Made for TV Joan Cusack steps in to explain that Leona didn’t have the best home life growing up, which explains her Bah Humbug attitude towards Christmas. Suddenly, Sexy Santa starts to see her more than just a Corporate Drone with a lump of coal where her heart should be.
Women of all shapes, sizes, ages, and levels of desperation pass across Sexy Santa’s lap, making his job a truly daunting one. When hot sorority girls and curvy gym bunnies come along, it’s great, but acting like you find dumpy housewives, grammas, and flat out ugly chicks sexy takes a lot of work.
I hope I’m getting hazard pay.
Leona Helmsley stands by watching closely, reminding our Sexy Santa to keep the charm turned on and the smiles bright and believable. Sexy Santa is making a heroic effort, even with his cheeks, and thighs I’m sure, hurting. Next in line is an adorable old lady who, in appropriate attire, could be cast as Mrs. Claus, under the old regime, that is. As she walks towards the stage, she suddenly needs to sit down. Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday helps her down, and she proceeds to collapse. Leona runs over yelling “Senior Down!” into her walkie talkie, alerting security to call an ambulance. As luck would have it, but unbeknownst to Leona, Sexy Santa is training to be an EMT. He rushes over, and when he cannot find a pulse, begins administering CPR, as a camera crew films the entire scene.
An uncertified EMT in training… yeah this can’t end well.
Two things cross my mind. 1) This is just a lawsuit waiting to happen, complete with high definition video evidence, should something go horribly wrong. And 2) I wouldn’t put it past Leona to orchestrate this whole stunt, thereby exponentially increasing the amount of publicity for the promotion and sending her sales through the gingerbread roof. Mrs. Claus quickly awakens, asking if she’s in heaven, and looking up into Sexy Santa’s hot mug, I can understand the confusion. Unfortunately, she’s still in South Boston and now she’s lost her spot in line. The ambulance arrives to whisk Mrs. Claus to the hospital for the appropriate medical treatment, and Sexy Santa bails on work to accompany her. Leona watches the ambulance drive off, wondering how she’s going to explain to hundreds of horny women than their Sexy Santa is taking the afternoon off, while Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday looks on with lust, dubbing our Sexy Santa “Dr. McSexy” and announcing that she’s in love. Hmmmm, someone’s been watching too much Grey’s Anatomy.
Funny, that was my reaction too.
The next day, Leona visits Mrs. Claus in the hospital with a lovely bouquet of flowers 1) to make sure she’s not thinking of suing and 2) to offer help with her Christmas shopping. Mrs. Claus’ daughter thanks her, letting her know that Sexy Santa spent the night with Mrs. Claus to make sure that she’s alright. Leona is caught off guard by Sexy Santa’s thoughtfulness and caring. Mrs. Claus pipes in, saying she’ll be a lot better once she can get out of the hospital and back to the mall to see Sexy in action.
Hey, if Mrs. Claus has a bad heart, perhaps she shouldn’t be engaging in activities that speed up her heart rate. Just saying…
As Leona goes to leave, she runs into Sexy Santa in the hallway as he goes to check on his patient. He feigns surprise to see her there, remarking that she should be in her office obsessing over sales reports. Leona expresses hurt, asking if that’s really what he thinks of her. Honestly, why wouldn’t he when the sum of all his interaction with her has amounted to her basically strapping a yoke on his back, mounting him and whipping him to work harder and move faster. Slightly embarrassed, he breaks out a compliment, calling her interesting, complicated and infuriating (but in a good way, of course), betraying a secret attraction to her that even he wasn’t self aware enough to acknowledge as of yet. She takes the compliment in stride with an arched eyebrow and flirty smile, excusing herself to get back to work, and while she walks away, they do that thing in all romantic comedies when one person pauses briefly to watch the other walk away, and just when they turn back to leave, the other person stops to look back. So cliché. So overused. And yet, it works every fucking time. Dammit, I’m a complete sucker.
Back at the mall, Leona helps Sexy Santa adjust his Santa hat and sits sexily on the dressing table while he tries to get Leona to open up.
Let the flirting begin.
She maintains her tough, all-business façade, but Sexy Santa has been noticing how much she loves the mall and the people there. He thinks she should stay at the mall because it makes her happy, but she won’t admit anything other than her own ambition.
Smarmy Boss Man shows up to see the Sexy Santa promotion in action and to praise Sexy Santa for his part in the mall’s success. He goes out of his way to defect the praise in Leona’s direction, helping to make the case for her winning the promotion to corporate that she so desperately wants. Smarmy Boss Man instructs to keep Sexy Santa happy since he’s their Golden Christmas Goose, but as Leona walks him out to his awaiting limo, he drops a corporate bomb on her. Even though South Boston Mall is solidly in 4th place in sales, there’s more to this contest than had been initially revealed. The lowest producing malls are actually gonna be shut down, and South Boston is squarely in the line of fire.
But good luck trying to save it.
Leona Helmsley is suddenly freaked out about her beloved mall going out of business and begs for the jobs of the 900 people under her care. Smarmy Boss Man is unmoved, challenging her to come in first. In that case, the mall can be saved. Looks like they’re gonna need a Christmas Miracle ™, and more than just a Santa with a thousand watt smile and killer, albeit covered up abs.
Next up for the Sexy Santa promotion–a feature on the news following Mrs. Claus’ successful resuscitation. Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday, bless her heart, thinks she’s gonna be on national television, and Leona is amused by her stupidity but dismayed by Sexy Santa’s lateness. She calls him, discovering that he’s having more bicycle issues, and he’s stranded. Leona offers to call him a cab, but Sexy Santa has a better idea, twisting her arm to pick him up herself. Despite weak protests, she gives in and soon arrives at his apartment building. He climbs into her neatly appointed Prius, and thanks to some geographic nostalgia, Leona finally opens up.
See, I’m a real person. Now fall in love with me already.
She and her mom had their first apartment right around the corner from him, and she used to beat up boys down the street because they wouldn’t let the girls play street hockey with them.
They make it back to the mall for the news interview, and Sexy Santa’s sex appeal seems to have every woman hot and bothered. The reporter flirts with him during the whole interview, and Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday makes it appear that their on stage chemistry translates off stage. Sexy Santa just looks uncomfortable. Leona tells him he did a good job afterwards, but now he needs a ride home. Leona tries to pawn it off on Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday since she’s so into him, but Sexy Santa only has eyes for Leona and without too much additional protest, she consents.
She pulls up the Prius out in front of the restaurant, recognizing the pizzeria as her dad’s favorite place. Leona reveals that her dad left when she was 5, and the humanizing of Leona begins in earnest. Pizza Papa sees them talking in the car, and goes to say hello. Sexy Santa introduces them, and Pizza Papa invites her in for a free meal. Leona politely declines, saying she’s gotta get back to work. Sexy Santa implores her to be more spontaneous, and Pizza Papa practically drags her out of the car, refusing to take no for an answer.
Inside, the inadvertent seduction begins as Pizza Papa attempts to teach Leona how to make pizza. He asks what kind of pizza she likes, she reveals that she doesn’t eat it because of the carbs. The old man looks at her like she just insulted his mother, and she relents, offering up pepperoni. Sexy Santa ties an apron around her waist and Leona immediately gets wet down below.
Shit, I hope I put on the sexy underwear this morning, just in case.
She takes instruction well, but can’t resist tossing the dough up in the air until it finally lands hilariously (albeit completely fake) right on her face. Completely predictable, and yet, I still chuckled. Did I mention that I moved on to bottle #2 of Boones?
EPIC PIZZA FAIL!
While Leona pulls pieces of dough out of her hair (that never broke off when the dough landed on her face), she and Sexy Santa sit down for a real conversation. She points out pictures of Dead Mom behind the bar, and it gets Sexy Santa all nostalgic about the huge Italian feasts she would prepare. To this, I can testify. Christmas dinner, or any holiday for that matter…. Or any get-together, really… starts with the antipasta course shortly after noon, and you don’t get up off the table until it’s time to leave and you need to be rolled out the door because you’re so full. LOVE IT!!!! Unfortunately, for Leona, Christmas dinner consisted of Chinese takeout and wine (for her own dead mother). Sexy Santa is sorry to learn this and even sorrier that Leona thinks that Christmas is just another day. She changes the subject, pointing out his textbooks and complimenting him on his ambition. Man, her first impression of him missed the mark huh? A blind man could hit a moving target from 100 feet with a slingshot more accurately. Sexy Santa teases her about just how wrong she was about him, and they flirt a little bit. That is until she asks about the closing of the restaurant, and we finally learn that Moretti’s is being forced out of the neighborhood to make way for a luxury apartment/office building.
Sorry small businesses, time to make way for the South Boston Death Star!
But Sexy Santa and his little elves have one last opportunity to designate the building a historical landmark. Leona is sufficient impressed, but Sexy Santa brushes it off, saying that it’s what you’re supposed to do for family. It’s all so sweet I could shit candy canes.
Suddenly, Leona’s phone reminds her of a very important important date and she runs off without eating her pepperoni pizza. Watching her leave, Papa Pizza comes up from behind the bar to ask when the wedding is. Sexy Santa looks wistful but downtrodden, pointing out that she has a boyfriend.
And a douchey one at that.
Papa Pizza reminds his son that Dead Mom had a boyfriend when they first met. Did you get that folks? Sexy Santa is gonna make a play for Leona. That sudden pain? It’s from the sledgehammer the plot of this movie just took to the side of your head.
That very important meeting Leona had to dash off for? A lunch date with Evil Goatee. He ordered for her in her absence because he’s gotta run out after for a meeting with the lawyers to settle on some condos in South Carolina. Weird, as Leona points out, since their company only invests in commercial real estate, but Evil Goatee pats her on the head, saying, “Silly girl, business is for menfolk.” Actually, he says, with the guiltiest look on his face I might add, that they’re always on the lookout for good opportunities. The guilty look continues when she asks him if he knew about the plan to shut down the lowest producing (transation: ghetto) malls. He did, but he assures her that she’ll win the promotion, especially since the other malls’ promotions all flopped big time. She pauses to consider the situation, and he swoops in to change the subject, inviting her to Aspen for Christmas to meet his family.
Nevermind impending unemployment, let’s go hang out with my blue blood relatives.
Tempting invitation for a poor little girl from Southie, but her interaction with Sexy Santa has already started to change her perspective. She suggests blowing off the slopes to do something romantic instead, like taking a pizza making course together. On Christmas? Can’t you do that when you get back? OOOOOOOH, I GET IT! You really wanna be with Sexy Santa, so you’re trying to turn your boyfriend into the new man you’re attracted to so that you don’t have to cheat on him. Silly me. And Silly Leona, because Evil Goatee isn’t having any of it, since Aspen is the place to be for Christmas and that he doesn’t wanna upset his family. He dismisses her idea with a wave of his hand while the waiter arrives with their plates, and Leona looks up to the television mounted on the wall, which just so happens to be airing the interview with Sexy Santa. If you can’t tell where this is going by now, you need to taken out back and shot, and have your body disposed of in the Mystic River.
Back at the mall, well after closing, Made-for-TV Joan Cusack spies a dusting of flour on Leona’s blouse, finding out that she had lunch with Sexy Santa. Leona downplays the significance, saying she just dropped him off at the family pizzeria. Down below, Sexy Santa is rehearsing with Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday, and Leona’s face turns green with envy.
If that whore doesn’t back the fuck off, I’ll cut a bitch, Southie-style.
Joan Cusack notices, calling her out on her feelings for Sexy Santa. Leona denies it, telling her about her plans to go to Aspen with Evil Goatee. Joan Cusack is hardly impressed, and Leona changes the subject back to business, desperate to keep their numbers on the uptick. Joan Cusack tries to shrug it off, pointing out how great they’re doing, but Leona is determined. Joan Cusack is almost insulted that Leona is so desperate to get the promotion and escape the ghetto. Without any explanation, Leona just asks her firmly to DO HER JOB! Rebuffed, Joan Cusack goes back to work, clearly upset with the way her friend/boss just treated her.
Back in her office, Leona is filing away papers when Sexy Santa shows up bearing gifts—a cold Moretti’s pizza and a bottle of Merlot.
Leona begs off, again because of the carbs, but Sexy Santa threatens to incur the wrath of Papa Pizza to brow beat her into eating some. Despite Sexy Santa’s own incorrect first impression of her, she insists that she’s not uptight, confessing to such hijinxs as eating an entire vat of buttercream frosting on a dare and driving the getaway car when Joan Cusack went to TP her scummy ex-boyfriend’s car. Sexy Santa jokes around with her, but he can’t take his eyes off her. His gaze gets seriously as he says that she should smile more. Leona gets momentarily bashful under Sexy Santa’s longing gaze and the sparks are flying big time. Suddenly, Sexy Santa points out the barely audible plucks of music coming from somewhere in the mall and he gets up to go investigate, begging her to go with him. Faking reluctance, she goes along.
They run out into the mall, quickly discovering the source of the music. Some idiot employee, who will likely get fired tomorrow, left the mall’s carosel running (although, I’m sure we’re supposed to believe that Sexy Santa arranged this as part of his elaborate seduction of the hard-nosed boss-lady). He askes her to go for a spin with him, and Leona asks about Gal Friday. Sexy Santa assures her that he has no interest in her vapid personality and annoying puppy love. Despite Leona’s weak protests, he drags her onto the moving carosel and they start to dance as romantic music swells around them.
You narrowly missed a lawsuit already, thanks to Sexy Santa’s hotness. No need to tempt fate again.
Under the magic of the scene, their eyes are transfixed on the other. Leona relaxes in Sexy Santa’s arms and their bodies draw closer until finally, Sexy Santa kisses her tenderly. AWWWWWWW!
Santa’s got game!
Sexy Santa suddenly pulls back a little, breaking the kiss to apologize, but Leona hasn’t had enough. She grabs his face and kisses him back with tons of passion and purpose.
No worries, Leona. I would dive in for a second helping too.
But, since we still have a lot more movie left, reality quickly shatters the magic. Leona breaks off the kiss this time and runs off, saying she can’t do this. And Sexy Santa just stands there, calling after her, likely immobilized by his raging boner and accompanying blue balls.
Is it too late to call up Gal Friday and ask her to play some Reindeer games?
Leona is back in her office packing up her purse when Evil Goatee shows up out of nowhere. Hopefully, he came in from employee entrance, missing the scene on the carosel. He tells Leona that he wants to be more romantic, so he spontaneously showed up to whisk her away for a late meal/drink. Eager to escape and forget what just happened, she agrees and excuses herself to go “freshen up,” which really means to fix any residual lipstick smears caused by the kiss. As Evil Goatee waits for her, he notices the cold pizza and two wine glasses on the table just as Sexy Santa rushes in calling out Leona’s name. As Scooby would say… RUT ROH!
Way to leave the evidence just laying around for anyone to find.
Looking like a little boy whose puppy just got hit by car, Sexy Santa tries to cover up what just happened. Evil Goatee immediately starts with the verbal berating, saying that he’s there to take Leona out for a bite of “real food” and the “wicked” job he’s been doing (interesting, though incomplete use of a New England buzzword) will undoubtedly earn Leona her promotion so that they can work side by side at corporate. In fact, he’s going to ask Leona to move in with him at Christmas, so kindly back the fuck off.
I may not have your abs, but I can afford to take her to Aspen. Top that!
Sexy Santa silently rages, saying that he would never stand in HER way, implying that she might not want that. Considering the kiss they just shared, I’d bet he’s right. Evil Goatee, however, can’t resist further putdowns, calling Sexy Santa eye-candy that everyone will get sick of once Christmas is over. PUNCH HIM OUT!!!! The very brief opportunity for some ghetto justice quickly passes as Leona emerges from the ladies room, pretending that carosel kiss never happened. Sexy Santa wishes them a good night and walks out, leaving behind a smug looking Evil Goatee and a regretful looking Leona.
The scene cuts to daytime, and Leona shows up at the corporate office in time to spy the end of a meeting between Smarmy Boss Man, Evil Goatee, and some random dude.
This is every bit as shady as it looks, I’m sure.
Leona approach Smarmy Boss Man as he emerges from the conference room to present him with her mall’s latest numbers. Evil Goatee sees the random dude out, and Leona waits til he’s alone to say hello. Evil Goatee is surprised to see her, thinking he forgot about a date. She explains her presense and asks who the random dude was. Ah, that was Councilman Quinn. She asks what business they have with him, and Evil Goatee diverts her attention, saying he can’t talk about it, but it promises to be big! He excuses herself to jump on a conference call, leaving her alone to snoop. She hits paydirt pretty quickly, spying a model skyscraper that looks an awful lot like the building that is putting Moretti’s restaurant out of business.
Now it’s Evil Goatee’s turn to leave damning evidence out in the open for anyone to see.
Speaking of which, Sexy Santa serves lunch to some regulars who are heartbroken about the restaurant closing. Sexy Santa promises one last trick up his sleeve that just might save the restaurant after all. He clears a plate, bringing it over to the bar, where the Elf Siblings proceed to tease him about his new girlfriend/boss-lady.
Leona Helmsley and Santa sitting in a tree… K-I-S-S-I-N-G!
Papa Pizza walks up looking like someone died, and sure enough, something is definitely dead. The lawyer just called. The appeal hearing has been cancelled. The City Council denied the appeal, pushing the development deal through at an emergency meeting. Sexy Santa offers to go down and rough up some crooked politians, but Papa Pizza puts the kibosh on that, proclaiming the matter OVER.
Hey, it’s not as if your wife just died. Oh… wait….
Back at corporate, Leona ambushes Smarmy Boss Man at the elevators, asking about Archfield Towers. Shocked that she even knows about that, Smarmy Boss Man focuses her attention on saving the jobs of the people at her mall. She stutters, because yes, that is very important to her too. He tells her that South Boston Mall is now in 2nd place. Emphatically saying they don’t have anything else to discuss, he draws in close to tell her that you don’t get to 1st by taking your eye off the ball.
In other words, pay no attention to the man behind the green curtain. Except this isn’t Oz, and the Wizard is really a ginormous luxury apartment building.
Back at the mall, Leona is dishing to Joan Cusack about what she found out. Joan Cusack thinks that Sexy Santa has a right to know, but Leona can’t risk having him quit so close to Christmas. Joan Cusack is baffled at how uncaring her friend is since Sexy Santa and his family are about to lose their livelihood, when she just stands to lose a promotion.
It’s a shame we won’t be able to chat like this anymore after they close the…. oops, forget I said anything.
Because she’s sworn to secrecy about the mall closing issue, she can only say that the situation more complicated. Joan Cusack offers to simplify it for her—tell Sexy Santa the truth before she is banished to a mountaintop cave high above Whoville with only an adorable doggie to keep her company and heart that is three sizes too small.
Back stage before his final performance, Sexy Santa is sulking about losing the restaurant and the girl. It’s truly hard out there for a pimp. White Gay notices and asks what’s wrong, quickly putting the pieces together. He offers some unsolicited advice—make a move before you end up in the friend zone, looking over with his own brand of sorrow as Black Gay gets hit on by choreographer. AWWWWW!!!
If I jump off the Mass. Ave. bridge, maybe he’ll realize how much I’m in love with him.
Sexy Santa suggests he take his own advice, and they both sit there wallowing in self pity. Ahhhhh, now that’s the feeling I associate with the holidays.
Sexy Santa, however, springs into action, storming into Leona’s office to bare his heart and soul to her.
I LOVE YOU!!!!!
In a self deprecating manner, he says that she’s probably too good to ever end up with someone like him, but she denies that, saying any girl (or gay guy) would be lucky to have him. He tells her about the appeal denial, and Leona is shocked until Sexy Santa mentions Big Bad Councilman Quinn, and a lightbulb the size of the north pole goes off in her brain. Sexy Santa starts talking about the kiss, and because she has similar feelings for him, her guilt takes over. She finally admits to knowing about the project and who is behind it.
Do you still love me? After all, I didn’t technically betray you.
He sees a glimmer of hope, asking her to talk to Smarmy Boss Man on the family’s behalf, but Leona declines, saying her hands are tied, what with trying to save 900 jobs at the mall, as opposed to half a dozen at Moretti’s. Sexy Santa gets all butt hurt, accusing her of knowing all along and using him just to advance her career. He tries to quit, but she convinces him to stay on, saying that he’ll be sued for breach of contract and he’ll lose everything. In his despair, he points out that he already has.
Excuse me while I join White Gay in jumping off the Mass. Ave. Bridge.
Because he’s a stand-up guy, he doesn’t end up quitting, but he certainly sits in Santa’s Village all downtrodden and depressed while horny women continue to sit in his lap. From the 2nd floor, Leona and Joan Cusack discuss Sexy Santa’s broken heart, and she consoles Leona with the fact that at least she did the right thing by telling him. Leona doesn’t see the point in trying to be with him romantically, because it could never work. They’re too different.
Backstage, everyone says tearful goodbyes, and Sexy Santa consoles Reindeer Dancer/Gal Friday, assuring her they’ll see each other around and don’t forget about those community college classes he told her about. Because she’s dumb as a box of rocks, and some education would do her a world of good. Joan Cusack steps up to argue on Leona’s behalf, assuring him she does have a heart and to at least hear her out. He reminds Joan that Leona may be nice and all, but she doesn’t believe in Christmas. So what’s the point. The point, we all know, is that YOU LOVE HER!
He decides to give her one last chance, showing up in her office to collect his check. She awkwardly hands him the $5K promised him, saying he was worth every penny. Didn’t Richard Gere say that to Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman? Too bad Leona didn’t get some hot sex on a piano as part of the deal. Sexy Santa sarcastically responds that he was happy to advance corporate greed in the process.
After all that we’ve been through, is that really what you think of me? Except yeah, that’s pretty much been the extent of their relationship.
Leona tries to say that that’s not what she meant, but he raises his eyebrow in disbelief and goes to walk away. She stops him for a sec, wanting to say something, but the only thing that comes out is Merry Christmas. Sexy Santa reciprocates with his own Christmas wish, hoping it was all worth it when she gets everything that she wanted.
Sexy Santa arrives at Moretti’s one last time, looking forlornly at the goodbye banner they hung outside, and then at the poster announcing the impending construction of the South Boston Deathstar. He joins his Elf Siblings, and Papa Pizza tries to look on the bright side. Pregnant Sister breaks down in tears, moaning that they’ve taken away their Christmas. Papa Pizza reminds them of something Dead Mom always said—Christmas isn’t about gifts, it’s about family. Shhhh, don’t say that too loudly. Our economy hinges on a stupid American public unable to say no to their children, preferring to buy them whatever they want instead of imparting some much needed discipline. Papa Pizza wants them to count their familial blessings, but Sexy Santa doesn’t care. Naively, Sexy Santa can’t understand how a big greedy corporation could up and put them out of business without a second thought. Yeah, because they really care about you when 6 figure bonuses hang in the balance for them. Get real, buddy. Papa Pizza quickly cuts to the real reason he’s so upset—Leona. He comes to her defense, choosing to believe that she’s not as cold and corporate as Sexy Santa has come to believe.
Speaking of, Leona starts to get ready for the big fancy corporate Christmas party when her cell phone rings. It’s Smarmy Boss Man calling to congratulate her on her mall’s success. They indeed came in first place, and as a result, Leona will be getting that promotion. YAY!?!?!
So I saved the mall from closing?!?!?!
Leona is thrilled until Smarmy Boss Man gives her one final task before she joins him at corporate—spearheading the closing of the South Boston Mall.
Leona is shocked since she was ASSURED that the mall would be safe as long as they came in first! Because corporate CEO’s are trustworthy individuals who never go back on their word! HOW DARE HE?!?!? Stupid girl. She should know that the mall’s profitability isn’t sustainable without the help of Sexy Santa. She argues for the mall’s salvation, but to no avail. Smarmy Boss Man tells her to focus on her achievement. Merry Christmas, Leona. All that hard work was for nothing.
Leona finally takes up Black Hairdresser’s offer for a blowout to get ready for the Corporate Christmas Party, asking about her daughter in the process. It’s all so morose, considering she’s about to give her a pink slip in a week or two.
Perhaps you should consider paying this time.
Joan Cusack and the Gays arrive to congratulate her on the promotion and to let her know that they’re going to the Moretti Restaurant closing party. Leona gives them her blessing, and the Gays give her a bedazzled champagne colored dress for her party.
It’s so sparkly and pretty!
She wants to accept the gift, but she’s about to say that they can’t afford to give her this, what with their impending unemployment and all. Joan Cusack asks what’s wrong, and Leona just says, with complete honesty, that she’s gonna miss them all when she’s off living high on the hog while they’re left behind rationing food stamps. Joan Cusack, unknowingly digging the knife deeper, reminds her that they’ll all still be there at the mall and she can visit them any time she wants. They all hug, but Leona can barely hide her sadness.
Maybe I can figure out how to lay everyone off without them completely hating my guts.
Suddenly, she’s dressed for the party, and as she walks across the Sexy Santa stage, images of her mall family, complete with Sexy Santa himself go through her mind. All seems lost until she steps out of the cab at the corporate party greeted by the Old Santa Dude she fired a few weeks back. She apologizes to him for how she treated him, and Old Santa can’t resist getting his own digs in, remarking that she’s gotten everything that she wanted this Christmas.
Inside, Leona finds Evil Goatee at the bar, and he joins in the congratulations. But Leona isn’t in the mood for the festivities, and he asks why she’s not happy now that she’s gotten what she wanted. Leona tells him that they’re still closing the mall and that she can’t celebrate when so many people are gonna be losing their jobs in the process. Evil Goatee brushes it all off, calling the mall employees collateral damage. And suddenly, the rose colored glasses are lifted, and Leona sees corporate greed in all its depraved glory. She asks if he knew about this all along, and Evil Goatee confirms it, informing her that he got a promotion of his own.
Who cares about the poor people! With our combined income and the employee discount, we might be able to afford a pretentious apartment in the South Boston Death Star!
He begs for praise, but all he gets is disgust, calling him out on their bribe of Councilman Quinn to squash the Moretti appeal. He argues that the ends justify the means. Looking directly at him, she says she doesn’t like what she sees anymore, and calls HIM collateral damage.
OH SNAP!!! She just broke up with your pussy ass!!! All that’s missing is the Angela Bassett finger snap!
Leona turns around to walk out, but Smarmy Boss Man steps in her path with a microphone, getting everyone’s attention to announce Leona’s promotion. Blah blah congratulations, blah blah praise, say a few words, Leona!
That might not be the smartest idea, Smarmy!
He hands the mic over to her, and with every eye and ear in the room squarely on her, she starts talking about how she used to view Christmas as just a huge retail opportunity. But now she knows that Christmas is about family, and the people of the South Boston Mall have become her family. And she can’t, in good conscience, sit back and watch the destruction of that family. She goes to walk out, and Smarmy Boss Man chases after her to ask if she knows what she’s doing. And in as satisfying a way as can be achieved in this whole contrived predictable plot, she threatens to go public with the bribe if he moves forward with the closing of her mall. He tries to warn her that she doesn’t wanna play that game with him, but she points out that she learned from the best. I’m hoping she has some actual evidence of the bribe to back this shit up. But no matter. The threat seems to be enough as Smarmy Boss Man backs off. OH, and one more thing. Find another home for the South Boston Death Star, because it’s not welcome in the neighborhood. BOOYAH!
I wanna know how you plan to explain to the Board why you’ve suddenly decided to keep the South Boston Mall open and why you now have to find a new location to build the Death Star. I hear Roxbury is a great neighborhood.
She rushes out to the curb, unable to hail a cab. Old Santa follows her out, asking if she’s ok. She doesn’t understand why he would want to help her since she probably ruined his Christmas. He was clearly moved by her speech, reminding her that Christmas is about family. He quickly gets her a cab. She thanks him with a kiss and a Merry Christmas, and she’s off to bring tidings of great joy to the Moretti’s.
Meanwhile, the Moretti closing party is in full swing, and Made-For-TV Joan Cusack saunters up to the bar to hit on Beefcake Brother, which would actually be a match made in heaven, if heaven were South Boston. Over at the jukebox, the Gays ponder the musical options, and when they both reach for the same button, their fingers touch. They look up to meet each other’s gaze, and gay sparks fly this time. White Gay invites Black Gay over to his mom’s for Christmas to-furkey, and Black Gay accepts, offering to bring the Soy Egg-Nog. BLECH! Of course, the gays have to be pretentious health freaks! But YAY for the Gay Love Connection! As Papa Pizza pulls a pie out of the oven, Sexy Santa offers the 2nd half of his winnings to help him open the restaurant at another location. Papa Pizza is touched, but refuses to accept, telling him to put the money towards med school. It’s what Dead Mom would have wanted. He asks for help taking down the Moretti’s sign, but Sexy Santa can’t do it. Tears well up, and he escapes out the back.
It’s like mom dying all over again!
Leona Helmsley arrives in time to see Papa Pizza pack up the Dead Mom pictures. Joan Cusack notices her and asks why she’s not celebrating with the corporate fat cats. Leona apologizes for being a bad friend, and Joan easily forgives her well meaning but slightly misguided BFF. She asks where Sexy Santa is, and Beefcake Brother quickly tells her he went home, which is where she should go. OUCH! I bet he’ll kick himself when she reveals herself as their savior. Pregnant Sister takes her out back where Sexy Santa is drowning his sorrows in a beer.
He asks what she’s doing there, to which she quickly informs him that she turned down the promotion, explaining that she was wrong for not telling him about the company being behind the South Boston Death Star. But she didn’t wanna make the same mistake twice when she found out about the bribe. He can’t understand why she would do all this for Moretti’s. She says that she did it because it’s the right thing to do, and she did it for him. As snow starts to fall, she confesses her true feelings for him—namely animalistic horniness.
I’m just a girl, standing in front of a mall Santa, asking to sit on his lap and get her Christmas Wish.
She used to think Christmas was just another day, but she doesn’t wanna spend another Christmas alone at home. She wants to spend it with, say it with me, FAMILY! She wants to spend Christmas with HIM! When he doesn’t immediately respond, she gives him permission to speak. He looks at her with a goofy grin on his face, tells her to stop telling him what to do, and then kisses her. YAAAAAAAY!!!! Cue happy ending!!!
And they lived happily ever after, until she got tired of paying his way through medical school, only to have him cheat on her with a slutty nurse in the supply room of Mass General.
They walk back inside, arm in arm, and Sexy Santa stops Beefcake Brother from packing up the bar. Papa Pizza gets up from playing with his grandkids, and everyone looks on as he breaks the news that, thanks to Leona, Moretti’s will not be closing after all! It’s a Christmas Miracle ™! Everyone cheers and hugs!
The real winner here: America’s Small Businesses!
Leona and Sexy Santa go out front to pull down the closing sign, now that the restaurant isn’t closing. As they return to each other’s arms, Leona asks if she gets to cut to the front of the pizza line, now that she’s saved the restaurant. Sexy Santa responds with a Merry Christmas. She wishes Merry Christmas back, and they kiss some more as the snow gets heavier. He lifts her up and twirls her around as the camera fades to black.
And there you have it, Gasmii. Another awful holiday movie that still manages to transcend its awfulness to impart some holiday cheer and a much needed break from all the holiday bustle. Check your local listings, as I’m sure ABC Family will be rerunning this cubic zirconia of a movie ad infinitum over the next two weeks. Or, you could just go online and watch on Hulu where it will be streaming through New Years Day.
Happy Christmahanikwanzaa, Gasmii! And best wishes for prosperous 2012 (until the End of Days, anyway, if the Mayan calander is to be believed)! Cheers, bitches!