Ready or not, here I come…..
A very Merry Christmas to you! A time for games! And jollity! And awful awful tragedy!
Get in the mood for the season with a narrative version of a wildly popular Victorian Christmas song with a distinctly gothic twist (which is also the name a dance I’ve been known to do on occasion).
Can be enjoyed all year round, any time you fancy a game of hide and seek.
“The mistletoe hung in the castle hall; The holly branch shone on the old oak wall.”– Thomas H. Bayly, “The Mistletoe Bough”
The 1904 Film
The full version of the 1904 film mentioned is linked below or you can watch the whole one here: BFI Mistleone Bough, and I really do recommend it, there are some exceptional moments in it, all throughout but particularly at the end.
“You can’t hide. Gonna find you and keep you happy”– The Delfonics
Another version of the song
So for reasons to do with copyright I could only include the old very scratchy version of the song in the episode but if you want a modern cover Kate Rusby’s is damn good, and has a very different feel to it.
In Victorian times the song was “solmenly chanted” as a “national occurrence at Christmas” which has a wonderful dark menacing air to it but I do also like this lighter sounding version – though equally sombre in subject matter.
I can’t speak for everyone but I know for me it really gets me in the mood for Christmas!
Illustrations of the tale (SPOILERS!)
Spoiler warnings are obviously very important on a tale that’s a few hundred years old. But this one really is all in the ending.
Wishing you all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year!
- Mistletoe Bough lyrics – describes the song as “Stately, delicate, and positively creepy” which I really like
- Burials and Beyond, the Mistletoe Bride – lots of background and detail
Musical credits for Episode 22: The Mistletoe Bride
Intro and outro theme from the incredibly talented Alice Nicholls Music
Other music, used under various Creative Commons licenses:
Goddess of the moon
Hide and seek (yes I am pleased with the appropriateness of this one)
Yonder hill and dale
Deck the halls
Church Bell Celebration
“It’s the mistletoe bride! The mistletoe bride is feeling rough, in her home-made sarcophagus, the sturdiest box, the heaviest lid..”