How about a little bit of holly and ivy to turn everything red and green? Tis the season and so, for this issue, I thought it would be fun to bring you guys a Christmas movie! Make the Yuletide Gay is about as cute and festive as they come. The story follows 22-year old couple Olaf “Gunn” Gunnunderson and Nathan Stanford as they head home for the holidays. Gunn is a Midwestern boy who, in spite of his status as “big queer man on campus”, has never actually come out to his oddball parents, Nathan is the son of a wealthy East Coast couple who have been distant ever since his father discovered him with one of his boyfriends in high school. On his way home, Nathan gets a call from his parents, who say that they are taking a cruise over the break and “forgot” to tell him. Not wanting to spend the holidays alone, Nathan shows up at Gunn’s doorstep, only to discover that he is still firmly in the closet. The two decide that they will “straighten out” for the holidays and hilarity ensues.
Definitely a warm and fuzzy, Yuletide is, to be sure, relentlessly cheesy. Gunn’s bubbly, cheery mother Anya is the typical cookie-baking, “don’t cha know”-ing Wisconsin housewife, his chilled out, pothead father Sven, a Lennon-esque hippie throwback , and Nathan’s parents play their East Coast snobbery with icy scorn. Christmas themed double-entendres abound with jokes about stockings in chimneys and stuffed turkeys. However, in spite of its often slapstick humour, the relationships between the different characters are played with such warmth and sincerity that they avoid becoming annoying. The relationship between Keith Jordan’s Gunn and Adamo Ruggiero’s Nathan (Degrassi: Next Generation? Anyone?), is truly adorable, and you can’t help but love Gunn’s bizarre parents, especially in scenes such as the one where Sven attempts Sudoku (“I need an 8 letter word that ends in 4”), or Anya faces off against the man-eating next door neighbour that she despises (played winningly by Alison Arngrim from Little House on the Prairie). Ugly Christmas sweaters abound, but if you can take the heat, you’re guaranteed to love this one.