The Curator of Schlock #254 by Jeff Shuster

The Sweetest Christmas

Run, run, run as fast as you can.

We’re on week 4 of our Hallmark Christmas extravaganza, a celebration of what one can do with G-rated made-for-TV movies financed by a company that makes its bread and butter off of Christmas Tree ornaments. We will not get an appearance by Santa Claus in this motion picture, in-person or disguised as elementary school janitor. There will be no princes ready to whisk away Lacey Chabert to far off countries that don’t exist in the real world. At least Lacey Chabert plays an aspiring confectionary chef rather than an aspiring fashion designer this time. The name of tonight’s movie is, naturally, The Sweetest Christmas.

Sweet1fIt’s about a young woman named Kylie Watson (Lacey Chabert) who went to a fancy culinary school and loaded herself up with student loan debt. She moved back to her old hometown to live with her sister and two adorable nieces. Kylie dreams of owning a pastry shop someday. Poor Kylie can’t even get a job as a chef at one of the seven restaurants in her boutique little town. She has to work as a secretary at her boyfriend’s real estate company, Hockey Homes. It sounded like Hockey Holmes. Maybe they spell it Hockee. I could turn on the captions, but maybe you don’t really care.  I think you don’t really care.

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Kylie ends up breaking up with her boyfriend, Alex (Lane Edwards), after he treats her to a romantic dinner that ends with him asking her to be his office manager rather than become his wife. Things begin looking up for Kylie when she receives a letter that she’s a semi-finalist in a National Gingerbread Baking Contest. Oh boy! Will Kylie be able to pull it off and win the $25,000 grand prize? Will she rekindle the love of an old high school boyfriend who runs the local pizzeria? I don’t want to spoil the movie for you, but it wouldn’t a hallmark movie if everything didn’t turn out just peachy. A Merry Christmas to you and yours from Orlando’s Museum of Schlock. See you next week.

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I’m under word count, which means I may not get my Christmas bonus from my editor, John King. How did this happen? Maybe because I’ve got nothing left to say. I mean it’s fine if you like Hallmark movies. Just because they recycle the same plot over and over again. Just because we have the same turgid romance with the Ken Doll of week. Hey, you do you.

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But if I may, I’d like to pitch my own Hallmark Christmas movie ideas to the bright bulbs over at the Hallmark Channel.

Rather than having Lacey Chabert playing an aspiring gingerbread chef, why not have her just be an office secretary who had a traumatic experience when she was a child. Maybe a psychopath dressed up as a gingerbread man brutally murdered her parents right in front of her when she was four years-old. Maybe she’s repressed the memory until her boss demands she wear the gingerbread man costume at their annual office Christmas party. Shenanigans ensue.

Think it over. Have your people call my people. We’ll do lunch.


Jeffrey Shuster 3

Jeffrey Shuster (episode 47episode 102episode 124episode 131, and episode 284) is an MFA graduate from the University of Central Florida.