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Blackadder's Christmas Carol

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Blackadder's Christmas Carol was a one-off television special, a parody of Dickens' A Christmas Carol, featuring the cast of the Blackadder franchise. It is set between the Blackadder the Third and the Blackadder Goes Forth television series, and was narrated by Hugh Laurie. Produced by the BBC, it was first broadcast on BBC One in the United Kingdom on December 23, 1988.

Synopsis

Victorian moustache shop owner Ebenezer Blackadder is the nicest man in England. He is everything that Ebenezer Scrooge was by the end of the original story. He is generous and kind to everybody, and sensitive to the misery of others. As a result, everybody takes advantage of his kindness. His business turns no profit, all his earnings going to charity and to con artists, and he lives a lonely, miserable life.

All this changes one Christmas Eve, after friends, family, beggers and the queen take all his and baldricks presents, money and food. When the Spirit of Christmas makes the mistake of coming round to congratulate him for his ways. The spirit lets him see shades of the past, the lives of his ancestors Lord Blackadder and Edmund Blackadder, the butler of the Prince Regent. Instead of being convinced that he is better than them, he grows to admire them and their wit. He asks the spirit to show him what could happen if he became like them. He then sees a vision of the distant future where his descendant Admiral Blackadder is a successful, if ruthless, official of a Universe-spanning Empire about to marry the similarly ruthless and insanely ambitious Queen Asphyxia XIX, both planning to conquer the Universe. Blackadder asks the Spirit what will happen if he stays kind. As an answer, he sees an alternate vision of the same future era where his descendant is a semi-naked slave of the incompetent Admiral Baldrick.

Blackadder makes his decision, proclaiming, "Bad guys have all the fun." He wakes up a different man: bitter, vengeful, greedy for money, and insulting to everyone he meets. Although he is now more in control of his life, he misses a golden opportunity when he insults two strangers who had come to reward him for his reputed generosity. These are Queen Victoria and her Prince Consort, Albert. The special ends with Blackadder looking startled when he is told the victims of his brushing-off were the royal couple.

Cast

Voice actor Character
Rowan Atkinson Ebenezer Blackadder
Blackadder ancestors and descendants
Tony Robinson Mr Baldrick
Baldrick ancestors and descendants
Robbie Coltrane The Spirit of Christmas
Jim Broadbent Prince Albert
Miriam Margolyes Queen Victoria
Miranda Richardson Queen Elizabeth
Queen Asphyxia XIX
Hugh Laurie Prince George
Lord Pigmot
Stephen Fry Lord Melchett
Lord Frondo
Patsy Byrne Nursie
Nicola Bryant Millicent

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