Actor Tim Allen says he was adamant that the new Disney+ series “The Santa Clauses” feature faith-based elements since Christmas is, after all, a Christian holiday.
“It originally had a lot of otherworldly characters, and ghosts, and goblins. I said no, this is Christ-mas. Its Christ-mas. It literally is a religious holiday,” Allen, 69, who's an executive producer for the series, told The Wrap.
“We don’t have to blow trumpets, but I do want you to acknowledge it. That’s what this is about. If you want to get into Santa Claus, you’re gonna have to go back to history, and it’s all about religion,” said Allen, adding that these elements are in episodes five and six.
“It’s really wonderful,” he noted, referring to how the religious themes were implemented into the last two episodes. “They took a chance and we did it really well.”
According to the series' synopsis, Allen's character, Scott Calvin, is “starting to lose a step in his Santa duties, and more importantly, he’s got a family who could benefit from a life in the normal world, especially two sons, one that grew up in Lakeside, Illinois (Charlie), and one that grew up at the Pole (Buddy). With a lot of elves, children, and family to please, Scott sets out to find a suitable replacement Santa while preparing his family for a new adventure in a life south of the pole.”
In an interview on "The Kelly Clarkson Show," Allen said the subtle Christian elements include background about St. Nicholas. “We dive deep as it gets later about St. Nicholas and the Turkish priest that started this.” The series, he added, is about “the power of giving to others.”
“The heart of Christmas is about giving. Getting is what we’ve gotten used to. … But the whole thing is about what it’s like to give,” he said. “Give as a father to his children. … It is so [magical].”
Culture wars also make a debut in the series with a line by Allen's character, who's asked what's bothering him and he replies, “Saying Merry Christmas to all has suddenly become problematic!”
Unsurprisingly, the line sparked a debate on Twitter, according to The Daily Mail, between those who have noticed a decline in the use of the phrase "Merry Christmas" in the last decade and other who believe it's a nonsensical argument raised by snowflake Christians.
This isn’t the first time Allen has received mixed reviews or pushback for standing up for his values that sometimes run afoul of the entertainment industry.
Following ABC’s cancellation of the show "Last Man Standing," former Gov. of Arkansas Mike Huckabee made a public statement saying that he suspects that a "liberal social agenda" played a part.
"There's a lot of grumbling in conservative circles about ABC canceling Tim Allen's sitcom, 'Last Man Standing.' That's understandable: it's just about the only show in prime time that presents a conservative point of view without attacking it and makes fun of PC liberals," Huckabee wrote on his website at the time.
Despite being a well-known comedian, Allen’s life wasn’t always about making others laugh.
At age 11, the actor’s father was killed by a drunk driver. After he rose to fame, he openly admitted to having struggled with alcoholism and addiction. Years earlier, in 1978, he was arrested for cocaine possession. After pleading guilty to drug trafficking charges, he spent two years behind bars in federal prison.
In the years that followed, Allen wrestled with his Christian faith, admitting he was “constantly a cynic,” even when he attended church services.
He eventually said he yearned for an intimate relationship with “whoever built me,” because that “didn’t happen by accident.”
Allen now refers to God as “the Builder.”
Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post. She can be reached at: email@example.com.