Like the cartoons in The New Yorker where the captions often have scant relevance to their illustrations, these vintage Christmas cards seem perversely at odds with the intended holiday spirit. Krampus terrorizes a young boy. A frog robs and murders a fellow amphibian. A dead robin (apparently) signifies joyful wishes. A polar bear prepares to devour an unwitting explorer, while an emu inspects its prey. What are we to make of these cards—other than to surmise that humor does not age well?
With our incessant social media, email, Twitter and alike, we still like to send and receive cards. In 2014, the UK spent over two billion dollars on greetings cards, a nice little earner. Having spent the morning writing seasonal cards to various friends and family, I find my glittered pictures of snow scenes and Christmas lights pale beside this little mailbag of festive cheer.
I think the robin is saying, ‘Come sunrise, you’re fucked Frosty.’
Not quite sure why this would be a ‘Merry Christmas.’ More like death of the old year and on with the new, right?
Like villagers in a ‘Frankenstein’ movie, the birds are coming to get you…
Frogs symbolize prosperity and good luck. So what does a dead frog portend then?
A stag beetle was also a symbol of good luck, but dancing with a frog? That’s BINGO.
The tea leaves offering best wishes.
Those awful acid flashbacks.
I’m not quite sure of the sentiment here.
Certainly more user friendly.
One for a frenemy?
So this is where all the rednecks got the idea for their family Xmas pics.
‘Jasper died a horrible death.’
Via Mental Floss, Valley of Steel, Lilly Library Blog and More fm Philly.