It's raining and cold outside and it's time to dig into that Christmas tradition of watching Frank Capra's movie about God's very own suicide prevention hot line.
Follow along, why don't you? And take a drink every time someone says George Bailey or Mr. Bailey! I will! Appropriately enough, I've got BaileyA Yamaguchi Wine to drink tonight.
An RKO Radio Release!
James Stewart! Donna Reed! Lionel Barrymore! Lots of other people!
We are now in Bedford Falls! People are praying for George Bailey (drink! twice!). Note that they are only praying for him and not actually doing anything.
In the not too distant future..whoops, that flying planet gave me MST3K flashbacks.
The stars talk! Two more George Baileys! Clarence has the IQ of a rabbit! Gee, Joseph, don't mince words.
The other angels outline the plot of the movie - namely that George will try to kill himself (spoiler alert!) and that Clarence needs to help him in order to get his wings. George Bailey! Geez. And another!
Let's jump in the wayback machine and look at George's childhood. Joseph is kind of a dick, isn't he? George Bailey! Back when he was 12 in 1919. Clarence has to remember for later. It's like a game! Hey George, if you hadn't egged your brother on, he wouldn't have fallen into the water that day.
Hey, George Bailey! And then Mr. Gower takes a drink! So are we supposed to assume that Violet was destined to be a tramp? Oh god, another George Bailey.
George is kind of an ass to Mary. I wonder why she ever liked him much less love him almost her entire life. Play the field Mary! Play the field!
George, inspired by a sign goes to see his father for help but dad is busy fighting with Mr. Potter. You know, these days, if George had pushed Mr. Potter like that he'd have sued.
Mary is STILL THERE as Mr. Gower slaps George around for slacking on the job.
Fast-forward to..argh another George Bailey. Two! Dammit. He's now grown into Jimmy Stewart and he's looking for a suitcase. Because he's going traveling! What the hell is a cattle boat?
I wonder if Mr. Gower is still hitting the bottle? Let's get the Bert and Ernie thing out of the way right now.
Bert is gonna go home and get some!
Aw look, a black servant. And sexual harassment!
No gin tonight!
Foreshadowing! George talks about his future plans.
Aw, sassy black servant. George doesn't want to be cooped up in a shabby little office.
Yeah George, get yourself an education and get out of there. HAHAHAHA.
Class of 1928! George and Mary meet again and Mary is all grown-up and purty now. And it's the Charleston contest!
I can't even imagine what this scene would look like in an updated version.
You know, I've never figured out who that other guy (the one who gives the younger guy the key), was. And take another drink people.
George starts to put the moves on Mary. She's barely legal! Hey Mary.
George and Mary commit petty vandalism. George does more foreshadowing and talks about how he has everything planned out and then Mary reveals herself as the future cause of all his misery as she probably wished that George never leave Bedford Falls forever and ever. George wants Mary to swallow his...moon.
A man doesn't get in a situation like this everyday.
Take another drink! George has read about things like that. What in the world has he been reading?
And we'll never find out what George's deal with Mary was going to be. Probably something sick and twisted. Pervert.
And George's father passes away and thus George's life forever changes because his uncle is a moron. So so far George can blame his future predicament on his future wife and his moron of an uncle.
And George gives up college for the Building and Loan. And then Harry goes off to college instead and yet another person (Harry) dashes George's dreams.
OK. So his uncle is a moron AND a drunkard. Great. The part where Uncle Billy shouts "I'm all right!" was actually not planned (according to wikipedia anyway and we know how wikipedia is always right).
And George's mom tries to set her obviously still virgin son up with Mary who is still obsessed with George.
Passionate necking. Sure George.
And George turns down the sure thing with Violet - who also has had the hots for George since she was a child. Mmm. Small town life.
Gee Mary, don't be too obvious. Of course it's still not obvious enough for George.
He's making violent love to me mother!
And a phone call from Sam Wainwright finally gets George (whom Mary's mother obviously HATES) to realize how hot..erm..much he likes Mary.
We missed a drink back there. Wait. He said George Bailey-owski. I guess that counts.
Mary smells really good or something.
JUST KISS EACH OTHER ALREADY.
And we see George's violent tendencies for the first time, which should have tipped Mary off.
Obviously Mary's mom is crying because her daughter didn't marry the successful guy.
Aw, sassy black servant.
Note to George: Don't plan anything ahead. EVER.
Had George listened to Mary..they would have had a great honeymoon and George probably could have gotten a job with one of his friends and gotten out of Bedford Falls. Score one for Mary I guess.
Aw, evil crippled old man.
So I guess they should just tear down each others houses.
20 bucks to get through the week! Ah, simple times.
Isn't that kind of twisted to hang up posters of places George wants to but WILL NEVER go to?
Soft focus head shot! Welcome home Mr. Bailey! Take a drink!
So, will Bert and Ernie stay out there all night?
And then Mary reveals HER TREACHERY! IT'S ALL HER FAULT GEORGE. ALL HER FAULT.
Mm. An era of no birth control.
Time goes on. The Bailey/Potter War continues. Take a drink! Sam Wainwright comes by to not rub it in that he makes money and George doesn't.
Will George sell his soul to Mr. Potter?
I am an old man and most people hate me but I don't like them either so that makes it all even. That's so the position I want to aspire to when I get older.
Mr. Potter has this weird outline on his vest that makes it look like he's wearing an iPod or something.
Of course Mr. Potter has George down pat. Garlic eaters?
Take the job George! Take the job! And you'd really have a wonderful life! And take two drinks people! Hell, George even calls himself George Bailey. Is George afraid of success?
Hey, he didn't even talk to his wife about it. You'd think he'd want to pay her back for her loyalty but OK.
Awesome, Potter has a painting of himself in his office, a sure sign of dickishness.
The seeds of discontent have been sown!
And Mary has a kid! Then another! And then a war broke out! Mary had more kids!
George Bailey: Draft dodger. Unfit to serve! Unfit to serve!
And now we're finally in the present. And Harry outshines George again.
And Uncle Billy is a moron. Slacker George? Did Uncle Billy just compare Mr. Potter to the Axis powers?
Gee, I wonder what the evil old man will do with the money?
Take a drink as George feels a pang of regret as he gives money away to Violet.
And another as the bank examiner calls out to him.
We see George's emotional state start to crumble. I really think having four kids would probably stress most people out.
Ask your mother. Yeah, because she was the one who actually had a chance to y'know, go to college.
Who names their kid Zuzu?
George Bailey! Take a drink while George lashes out at his child's teacher, her husband, his wife and his children. Oh, and then the Christmas decorations.
I'm sorry everyone. I'm just preoccupied with the fact that I might go to prison and stuff.
George begs Mr. Potter for money. Does he carry his life insurance policy with him everywhere? Well, he has his coat so he probably stopped by his office.
George begs God for help. He wants God or perhaps Peter Frampton to show him the way. Appropriately enough, during the bar scene you have to take three drinks.
Whoops. Drinking and driving don't mix kids.
I can fly! Yeah! You can fly! (kudos to whoever can get that reference)
But wait! Someone else jumps in first and then George jumps in to save him.
We finally meet Clarence, he of the rabbit's IQ. Of course he's not very coy about being an angel and whatnot.
Wait, how does AS2 equal Angel Second Class? Yes, George, your life is so bad that you get an idiot for an guardian angel.
Help me help you George!
And now George gets to experience his own alternate world, Earth Minus George. I wonder if Superman ever had adventures as Superboy here?
Welcome to Pottersville!
So on Earth Minus George everyone ends up a bunch of a$$holes? Take another drink! Whoops, Mr. Gower ended up doing time and hey, whatever happened to Martini? Did George never being born affect immigration too?
Seems like Pottersville is more of a happening place than Bedford Falls. The Baileys were the last bastion of morality in town or something?
It's like everyone in town should have an evil goatee. Even George's mom.
One could argue that Uncle Billy would have been better off in the insane asylum.
Whoops. And Harry died when he was a kid. Why didn't they just go the full mile and say that the Nazis won the war too?
You see George, you really had a wonderful life.
Yes, the worst possible thing that could have happened to Mary was she got a job and never got married. Yikes.
Assaulting a police officer! Who goes straight for his gun and fires into the street!
Get me back to my wife and kids before I have to go to prison!
And via the Cosmic Treadmill George is back to Earth George Prime!
George is back baby! And he starts shouting to random buildings. Isn't it wonderful that he's going to jail!
How long was he gone?? Wait, I missed a drink back there.
That really doesn't look like eight thousand dollars but I guess there's more coming in.
Aw, Italian stereotype.
Aw, sassy black servant.
Well, if Sam Wainwright is going to give up to 25,000 dollars can't everyone else take back their money?
Oh look, one other black extra in the back of the room to up the count of non-whites to three.
OK, see, why are they singing Auld Lang Syne on Christmas Eve?
*Insert SNL It's a Wonderful Life Lost Ending Skit here*
Merry Christmas everyone!
Oh, and if you were following along, the final count was over 25 George/Mr. Baileys throughout the movie. If we had just gone with the number of times you heard the name George it probably would have been over 50.