Happy Christmas Eve everyone! How is it going? Busy with food, presents, family, shopping, stuck at work? All of that stuff. Hey it could be worse. You could be a child all alone on Christmas. Or you could be a frantic mother trying to get back home to save that child. Earlier in the week I took a look at the symbolism within the Old Man Marley character. Today there is no symbolism. There is proof. Proof that it was inevitable Kevin would be alone on Christmas. Because his parents hate him.
Within the last few years the very quick image from the movie in which Kevin’s plane ticket is thrown out became well known. This oversight paired with the neighbor kid messing up the head count allows children of the 80’s and 90’s who are now parents to excuse the family.
This season new evidence has been unearthed. A little thing known as the children’s book adaptation of Home Alone.
That’s right! Within the shelves of the library is this short adaptation of the movie. Full of still shots and based off of the screenplay. While there are small differences to simplify the story for children, all in all it is faithful to the movie. Take a look at the first page.
A scene we remember from the movie. But it already sets up Kevin’s place in the family. He is ostracized from his siblings and cousins. Even the other little one who wets the bed. If that kid can watch a movie, Kevin can too. He still needs to pack his suitcase, because he’s never traveled before. Thankfully his mom is too busy on the phone, his dad is too busy lecturing him, and help isn’t coming.
Kevin’s older siblings have traveled and packed before. So much so they not only don’t need help, they think it’s foolish that Kevin does. So what’s the difference? It can’t just be age. Something has changed over the years. But what?
Kevin was a mistake.
All of his siblings are close to the same age. Probably planned. The family lives in a huge house. They haven’t traveled in years. We never see Kevin’s room. All of this sounds like a family that was planned and had their lives in order. Just enough space, money, and time to take the kids on trips. All of the diapers and sicknesses were over. The kids were able to watch themselves. Then here comes Kevin. Disrupting everything. Someone had to share a room. Both parents were in their careers and couldn’t be bothered with him. He might be blonde haired and blue eyed but he’s the red headed step child of the bunch.
No where is this shown more than not only Uncle Frank himself, but the reaction to him. Try this holiday test. In the middle of a meal, call any niece or nephew a jerk in front of his or her parents. Go ahead. I’ll wait. You’ll have plenty of time to come back and read this because you will be thrown out of the house. My brother and I get along great but if I looked at either of his children and said, “look what you did you little jerk!” he would punch me in the face and toss me out the door. Rightfully so. A parent can say that about their own child. You can make a joke or comment to your spouse on the way home about some other kid. But any parent who loves their child will not let anyone call their – what, 8 years old? – child a jerk to his face during Christmas time.
We see all of the family members rushing around to get ready in the morning. How everyone overslept, even excited children and bed wetters, is beyond me. But they did. Somewhere within all of the running around, Daddy McCallister checked every door and window. What about the attic windows? An attic which was a spare bedroom. That people were going to sleep in. That could have had a window open. Where your youngest is sleeping. Nope. The attic is where we put things that we can’t throw out but don’t need to see every day. V.C. Andrews presents, Home Alone.
Even if he wasn’t left behind by his family, Kevin was fated to fend for himself sooner than later. Everyone underestimates him. No one has faith in him. Even the narrator taps out. “Made himself a big bowl of microwave macaroni and cheese.” That looks like turkey, gravy, and some peas in the picture. At best a Swanson’s Hungry Man dinner which can also be made in the microwave. But why would Kevin put that on a plate? He did much more work than necessary. Or made a pretty good meal on his own. I’m leaning towards he cooked and this is not a microwave meal. If it was, the included brownie would be more present.
In the end, everything is happy and perfect. The burglars are defeated. Kevin’s family comes rushing home. He spends Christmas with everyone. The family learns a lesson about what’s important. About not taking each other for granted. Maybe gain some respect for Kevin.
“Pretty soon everything was exactly as it was before. Everybody was off doing different things, usually without Kevin.”
No one learns anything! A brief respite for Christmas. Then back to see you later Kevin. The unwanted child. We have our own lives and you can stay here being a burden to your family. No tale of his mom or dad teaching him how to pack. Uncle Frank doesn’t apologize. Buzz doesn’t offer to hang out with him. At least Harry and Marv have each other. Loneliness like this and it’s no wonder he gets mad at other kids skating on the ice. I would welcome the warm embrace of a bee sting too.