RT Podcast

"Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong" About... How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Charming as an eel or just the thing to grow your heart a few sizes every holiday season? We're tackling Ron Howard's garish – or utterly charming? – take on Dr. Seuss in our latest podcast episode.

by | December 24, 2020 | Comments

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

(Photo by © Universal / courtesy Everett Collection)

For his now-iconic turn as the Grinch in Ron Howard’s 2000 adaptation of Dr. Seuss’s beloved book, it’s said that Jim Carrey had to spend eight hours a day in the makeup chair and underwent training from a CIA agent to help him cope with the extended discomfort. On multiple occasions, the actor almost quit the production, so torturous was the process of becoming the Christmas-hating, Whoville-terrorizing green meanie. But, in the end, it was all worth it… right?

That depends where you stand. Much like a certain Internet-dividing dress (it’s definitely blue), How the Grinch Stole Christmas polarized critics and audiences upon its release. The story of the outcast Grinch (Carrey) – tossed aside by the residents of Whoville only to grow up as an increasingly “mean one” until little Cindy Lou Who (Taylor Momsen) enters his life and eventually enlargens his heart – was catnip to many who praised its incredible production design and Carrey’s whirlwind, bats—t performance. But for others there was something hollow at the center of this gaudy Christmas bauble, which stretched Seuss’s charming sliver of a story – so beautifully captured in Chuck Jones’ 1966 Christmas special – to a 104-minute ode to the commercialism it was supposed to be criticizing.

In this week’s episode of our podcast, Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong (A Podcast from Rotten Tomatoes), we’re unwrapping this modern Christmas favorite and asking: Is How the Grinch Stole Christmas really as bad as that Rotten 49% Tomatometer score? Or is this a smarter – and more hilariously cynical – film than many give it credit for? Joining hosts Jacqueline Coley (team Grinch!) and Mark Ellis (team Critics) is Winston A. Marshall, a.k.a. host, actor, and comedian The Swaggy Blerd. The trio talks Carrey’s masterful performance, the true villains of this Christmas world, behind-the-scenes drama (there was plenty), and why this Grinch might hit home with certain groups more than others.


Listen Now:  Spotify |  Apple Podcasts  |  Stitcher  |  TuneIn  |  Google Podcasts | Radio Public | Deezer | iHeart | Art19



Check in every Thursday for a new episode of Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong (A Podcast From Rotten Tomatoes). Each week, hosts Jacqueline and Mark and guests go deep and settle the score on some of the most beloved – and despised – movies and TV shows ever made, directly taking on the statement we hear from so many fans: “Rotten Tomatoes is wrong.”


If you have a suggestion for a movie or show you think we should do an episode on, let us know in the comments, or email us at rtiswrong@rottentomatoes.com.


Meet the hosts

Jacqueline Coley is an editor at Rotten Tomatoes, with a focus on awards and indie coverage but with a passion for everything, from the MCU to musicals and period pieces. Coley is a regular moderator at conventions and other events, can be seen on Access Hollywood and other shows, and will not stand Constantine slander of any kind. Follow Jacqueline on Twitter: @THATjacqueline.

Mark Ellis is a comedian and contributing editor for Rotten Tomatoes. He currently hosts the Rotten Tomatoes series Versus, among others, and can be seen co-hosting the sports entertainment phenomenon Movie Trivia Schmoedown. His favorite Star Wars movie is Jedi (guess which one!), his favorite person is actually a dog (his beloved stepdaughter Mollie), and – thanks to this podcast – he’s about to watch Burlesque for the first time in his life. Follow Mark on Twitter: @markellislive.


On an Apple device? Follow Rotten Tomatoes on Apple News.


Tag Cloud

toy story NBA cartoon romantic comedy Avengers Sony Pictures VH1 Warner Bros. twilight IFC Sneak Peek monster movies award winner TCA cancelled television worst E! child's play Pacific Islander saw X-Men TBS Quiz historical drama rotten movies we love movies football dark Black Mirror popular Tumblr Hallmark Countdown Rom-Com basketball TV movies Crunchyroll Spike DC streaming service olympics reboot National Geographic Marvel blockbuster Superheroes Nickelodeon christmas movies diversity unscripted heist movie Discovery Channel zero dark thirty Disney+ Disney Plus remakes Horror anime Endgame batman Holidays spain criterion Nominations USA Amazon nature Stephen King Drama scary movies Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Classic Film cancelled TV series 90s 007 First Reviews Starz Pixar Pet Sematary Sundance New York Comic Con Lionsgate VICE RT21 streaming movies talk show blockbusters new zealand Shondaland Amazon Prime Video docudrama psychological thriller spy thriller comics jurassic park revenge GIFs hollywood Comedy comic Cosplay medical drama adventure joker HBO Go dceu Year in Review SundanceTV BBC CMT festivals Television Critics Association sequel Fantasy sag awards SDCC italian CNN WarnerMedia LGBTQ cancelled TV shows Sundance TV ABC Family fast and furious dc screenings The CW Toys Awards kids strong female leads Peacock Syfy teaser A24 Masterpiece Christmas LGBT 2019 CW Seed movie disaster crime drama Musical FX on Hulu CBS werewolf Pirates MCU transformers Creative Arts Emmys boxing Apple TV Plus Writers Guild of America facebook Ovation cinemax south america dragons game of thrones foreign video on demand YouTube Mudbound Rocketman golden globe awards 99% Britbox Funimation mutant classics Election Spectrum Originals Columbia Pictures canceled TV shows name the review Spring TV Amazon Prime Thanksgiving Film japanese Marvel Studios Mary Tyler Moore Marvel Television science fiction Showtime Pop TV Emmy Nominations Country rt archives serial killer Action ESPN universal monsters President golden globes MSNBC BAFTA ABC Signature MTV YA crime thriller 2017 Rocky Comedy Central Mystery animated sports Pop Dark Horse Comics Paramount Plus anthology spanish toronto screen actors guild Arrowverse comiccon APB The Walking Dead Musicals The Walt Disney Company women japan Hulu DC Comics Interview 93rd Oscars Oscars quibi Certified Fresh king kong discovery 21st Century Fox WGN series live action new star wars movies new york Apple Universal First Look free movies renewed TV shows venice RT History 2021 GLAAD DGA Lifetime scene in color Apple TV+ politics robots Television Academy video 72 Emmy Awards SXSW romance miniseries thriller worst movies NYCC true crime parents scorecard Valentine's Day PlayStation zombies social media hispanic suspense Star Trek Polls and Games Mary Poppins Returns chucky Alien period drama Academy Awards adaptation Reality Superheroe Schedule know your critic legend Infographic 2020 Character Guide Freeform black Hallmark Christmas movies theme song cats marvel cinematic universe children's TV deadpool Paramount binge Sci-Fi Summer jamie lee curtis TIFF superman TCA 2017 Fall TV Marathons 2018 james bond nfl 24 frames Paramount Network TLC Winter TV Grammys Comics on TV ViacomCBS History Image Comics The Arrangement hist asian-american dogs HBO Max Chernobyl justice league Acorn TV razzies stop motion hidden camera Teen Tomatazos Film Festival Turner composers A&E 20th Century Fox Baby Yoda BET Cannes TV Land PaleyFest The Purge police drama supernatural australia 4/20 Trivia comic books Hear Us Out political drama Black History Month sitcom AMC BBC America archives FXX San Diego Comic-Con richard e. Grant FOX ABC PBS Awards Tour Animation cancelled concert Opinion Podcast rotten spanish language Captain marvel ITV spider-man obituary Pride Month Reality Competition Ellie Kemper harry potter dramedy Super Bowl Logo TV book Chilling Adventures of Sabrina trailers BET Awards See It Skip It Fox Searchlight GoT Mary poppins cops Western 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards all-time Calendar OneApp crossover space Watching Series HBO Disney streaming service Winners indiana jones CBS All Access Broadway based on movie rom-coms TruTV 1990s die hard Cartoon Network Family TNT satire American Society of Cinematographers nbcuniversal Esquire IFC Films international war Legendary Crackle vampires Binge Guide a nightmare on elm street comedies Star Wars Kids & Family cooking Red Carpet Box Office Heroines directors The Witch high school Comic-Con@Home 2021 green book mockumentary elevated horror Elton John Vudu Amazon Studios 2015 kaiju game show Food Network telelvision breaking bad franchise aapi Disney laika Music E3 Set visit Bravo Anna Paquin halloween tv target Exclusive Video cars kong independent biography Fox News Premiere Dates Sundance Now Wes Anderson The Academy fresh VOD YouTube Premium pirates of the caribbean Netflix Christmas movies adenture technology 2016 documentaries Tokyo Olympics lord of the rings Lifetime Christmas movies news travel ghosts Mindy Kaling casting Best and Worst godzilla documentary 45 Trailer Turner Classic Movies sequels Disney Plus films DC Universe stand-up comedy spinoff doctor who Adult Swim NBC USA Network crime zombie best Disney Channel Netflix halloween TV One boxoffice OWN prank indie mission: impossible stoner Women's History Month Tubi Walt Disney Pictures Nat Geo DirecTV tv talk Comic Book natural history TV renewals El Rey YouTube Red TCA Winter 2020 Holiday TCM festival psycho french blaxploitation streaming superhero Epix Tarantino emmy awards Emmys witnail Martial Arts Brie Larson versus ID reviews 71st Emmy Awards Trophy Talk aliens television latino Shudder slashers cults Biopics singing competition Ghostbusters docuseries Song of Ice and Fire ratings Travel Channel TCA Awards finale book adaptation BBC One Rock Photos FX Lucasfilm Video Games what to watch canceled Extras critics