Christmas Songs You’d Like To Punch In Their Stupid Faces

December 4, 2011


This week’s Weekly Question of the Week is inspired by Becoming Cliché’s post from a couple days ago about the worst Christmas songs ever written.  Christmas songs provoke impressive and diverse reactions.  There are many that I dig that I completely understand others loathe, and vice versa.  For example, I like “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” despite the fact that it’s basically a song about a guy tricking a girl in to sleeping with him and she says no, then says he should at least have the decency to compromise her ability to make decisions (“do you have any more of those funny cigarettes?”).  And some people hate it.

Then there are the one’s I just hate so much.  I hate hate hate them.  But for different reasons, and to different degrees.

You feel good about this song, Paul? Do you? Listened to the recording and thought. "That's it. Perfect."? Really?

“Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney.  Oh, God what a stupid, insipid song.  This guy wrote “Hey Jude”?  Tinny, boring, meandering.  It sounds like some people banging around a recording studio that only has a few instruments, and then improvising a Christmas song. This is the kind I can’t possibly believe anyone likes. I regret even mentioning it because it will be in my head now for hours.

“Christmas Shoes.”  This one’s different, because I love hating this song.  It’s like a buffet of hate, this song.  Cloying, manipulative, cutesy…  I end up singing this one around the house every year in a shrill falsetto.   I enjoy hearing this song because it’s like pushing on a bruise, or sticking a wedge of lemon in your mouth and trying not to pull a face.  Ooooh, that’s good hate.

Oh, it's real.

Novelty songs I can only kind of dislike. Songs like “What Can You Get a Wookie For Christmas (When He Already Owns A Comb)?” are equally terrible, but they’re a gag that didn’t work, so I almost feel more of pity for them.

Then there’s  “The 12 Days of Christmas.”  This is a song I can feel genuine anger toward.  A song I hate so much I’d like to just punch it in its stupid face.  No, no – don’t pretend this song is fun to sing.  It’s not.  It’s awful.  It’s just the worst thing ever done.  This song should be tried at The Hague.  Agonizingly long, unbearably tedious repetitious to the point of madness.  And it’s a trap!  Because it’s not 12 days of Christmas, is it?  Once you’ve sung the first, then the first & second, then the first & second & third, then the first & second & third & fourth, etc. – it’s 78 Days Of Christmas.  WHAT KIND OF DERANGED LUNATIC WOULD WANT TO SING THE 78 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS?  I imagine, after dying, traveling through a tunnel of light and you get to the other end and gasp! There’s snow!  And presents!  And dinner smells wonderful!  Is it… is it Christmas? “Why yes,” says a stranger wrapped in a scarf.  “Every day is Christmas here!  Come on in and join us.  But before we eat and open presents, perhaps you’d care to join us in a round of “The 475 Days of Christmas?  Ha Ha Haaaaa! HA HA HAAA!  MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!”

Really, if Hell isn't like the twist ending of an old Twilight Zone, everyone's going to be pretty let down.

So, after much preamble, we get to your Weekly Question Of The Week question for the week for December 4: What Christmas song do you not just dislike, but hate so much you want to punch it in its stupid face?

And in case you still don’t believe me:

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About The Byronic Man

Recently voted "The Best Humor Site in America That I, Personally, Write," The Byronic Man is sometimes fiction, but sometimes autobiography. And sometimes cultural criticism. Oh, and occasionally reviews. Okay, it's all those different things, but always humorous. Except on the occasions that it's not. Ah, geez. Look, it's a lot of things, okay? You might like it, is the point.

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68 Comments on “Christmas Songs You’d Like To Punch In Their Stupid Faces”

  1. Gow Says:

    I kinda love to hate “Last Christmas” by WHAM! It gets stuck in my head in an annoying way. But the song I really want to punch in the face is “Santa Baby” because everyone who sings it feels strangely compelled to use that obnoxious, pathetic, squeaky little Betty Boop voice that I find so much worse that the sharpest nails on the hardest chalkboard. Punch it in the face, kick it down the stairs, whatever makes it stop!


  2. BrainRants Says:

    That damn “Feed the World” song from the 80’s… *shudder*
    After that, anything by Celine Dion dealing with Christmas
    After that, anything by Mariah Carey, same issue


  3. A Broad at Home Says:

    I also hate that Paul McCartney song. Too much (bad) synth. I also can’t stand Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You.” Probably because it is fiercely overplayed and a zillion people claim they like, but really hate it as much as I do and I can’t handle that kind of hypocrisy so close to the most magical time of year.


  4. mydatingprescription Says:

    “Santa Baby.” I hate this song every time I hear it, but it is especially bad performed by Britney Spears. This song is the equivalent of wearing a slutty cop costume at Halloween. Typically performed by female artists who can’t decide whether they want to be a recording artists or a pole dancers, I want to punch this song in the face. When Britney sings it you not only get the nerve aggitating baby voice, but Autotune as well. I hate hate hate it and the sluts who perform it.


  5. She's a Maineiac Says:

    God, yes I hate Paul’s Christmas song! And now it’s stuck in my head, thanks so much. One of my favorites is John Lennon’s Happy Xmas (War Is Over) Maybe that song can do battle in my head and overtake the other one now… Nope, still have Paul’s song replaying in there. AHHH!!


  6. jacquelincangro Says:

    Where does Grandmas Got Run Over By a Reindeer fall into this mix? Please don’t make me listen to that one again.
    Also, (andI realize this one is a fave for many) Feliz Navidad kinda irks me. Thanks for wishing me a Merry Christmas from the bottom of your heart, but can you work in some other lyrics?


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      “Grandma” is a weird one. Its like a novelty track that managed to cross over. How? Who knows.

      And Feliz Navidad is like the “Entertainment Tonight theme” of Christmas songs. Where does it start? Where does it end? It just keeps going until you quit.


    • Joanna Oz-Davis Says:

      Amen about the Feliz Navidad. It’s like the yuletide version of Lambchop’s Song that doesn’t end. Parents wanted to KILL the songwriter and Shari Lewis for allowing it! I feel almost the same way about that particular Christmas song.


  7. Deborah the Closet Monster Says:

    I know they exist. I do. I remember glaring at my radio and changing stations several times last Christmas season. It’s not because I dislike Christmas music on principal–far from it!–but because there are some truly heinous Christmas songs. None of which I can currently remember over the lady near me in the restaurant who presumably has Tourette’s.


  8. MJ, Nonstepmom Says:

    I think McCartney’s is the worst (as it seems, along with everyone else). But I cant stand ANY of the cute-sy kids stuff like Frosty the Snowman or Rudolf or Santa’s Coming to Town -especially when they are re-made by adults. Pah- leeze. Kids are already way too into Xmas, they need a soundtrack to encourage them further??? Oh, except for “I want a hippopotomous for Christmas”…i like this because as a child I also taunted Santa with impossible requests. (Note: Chicago has a really fabulous Xmas CD).


  9. pithypants Says:

    Here’s a little gift, from me to you, that will make you want to karate chop Babs’s vocal chords:

    I play it as soon as I get to my parents’ house every year because it infuriates my mother.


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      That. Is. AWFUL.

      I’ve never heard that. I never want to again. You know, I’ve heard more abuse done Jingle Bells via “jazzy interpretations” than any other yule song. Why that one? What about it makes people think “this needs the ‘jazz scat’ treatment by me!”?


    • Joanna Oz-Davis Says:

      What was THAT!? Barbra Streisand on Anphenimenes? She’s singing it like the sheet music’s on fire!


  10. Lenore Diane Says:

    Admitting this makes me feel dirty, and I cannot bring myself to say ‘hate’, because I feel dirtier. Alas, “Christmas Shoes” grates on my nerves. Grates, grates, grates on my nerves. UGH!

    Another one I have a problem with is Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Santa Claus is coming to town’. I know, how dare I speak ill of Bruce. Sorry, you asked.

    P.S. Paul McCartney’s song is annoying, too.


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      I sometimes pretend that Springsteen one doesn’t exist, because I love him too much. but, at least Springsteen’s just sounds like they’re having a good time, cranking out a Christmas song.


  11. gojulesgo Says:

    I LOVE “Baby It’s Cold Outside” for all of its un-Christmasy innuendo. And that Paul McCartney song does totally blow snow chunks! That’s the one that first sprung to mind to answer your question, but another one that’s like pushing a bruise (ha! Good one!) for me is apparently called Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses.

    Gag me with a Christmas ladle!


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      That Waitresses song is possibly my favorite! I love it. Love it love it love it. I didn’t know anyone else on earth (well, except the band) knew about it. Kindred spirits, Jules. Kindred spirits.


  12. truthspew Says:

    I love Donny Hathaway’s rendition of “This Christmas”

    Done by Luther Vandross some years later:

    And I also love “All I Want for Chirstmas” by Mariah Carey:


  13. madtante Says:

    I guess I won’t direct you to my drunken cover of Do They Know It’s Christmas I did last year…


  14. Katie C Says:

    There’s only one Christmas song I really hate, and that’s “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas”. There’s always that one guy who starts singing it the weekend before Thanksgiving, just to be funny, and he does this every year, and it always takes him a few lines before he realizes that no, it’s not actually funny this year either. Also, there’s a couple of lines that kind of irk me:

    “A pair of hopalong boots and a pistol that shoots/ Is the wish of Barney and Ben;
    Dolls that will talk and will go for a walk/ Is the hope of Janice and Jen…”

    I get that this song was written in 1951, but it still bothers me.

    Also, that song “Do You Hear What I Hear” gets stuck in my head because I only know the first line of the chorus and barely know the melody, so I can’t sing it through.


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      Oh, I think girls are allowed to also want a little play oven.

      And I have a similar reaction to yours when someone turns on a light switch and someone says, “Let there be light.” Don’t know why. Maybe it’s like you’re saying – The person always thinks this is just so clever.


  15. S. Trevor Swenson Says:

    I actually like Do They know it’s Christmas. I found it interestng that Geldof tried to rerecord it on the anniversary with todays artists…Then he found none of them could sing.

    Yes Sir Paul totally phoned in that musical atrocity. I think recording engineers and producers have a responsibility to the listening public to take Paul aside after recording it and saying “Uh Paul…a few words on that Christmas song, let’s see… ummm “suck” yes “suck” comes to mind…”um Painfully bad”…let’s see…”not good”

    Lennon’s “So This Is Christmas” is an odd song in that it starts out great, and is a wonderful song for charities…then Yoko chimes in, and it is the musical equivalent of having 5 feet of thick knotted rope pulled from my anus in a swift lawmower starting motion.

    Punk Band FEAR’s “Fuck Christmas” is really good

    “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer” Painfully bad and not on the same planet as cute or funny

    The Barking Dogs “Jingle Bells” has become a tradition around my fathers house. I loop it until he gives me money and asks me to go to Cornell’s bar.

    My all time fave is this, but the full version is unavailable:

    Jimmy is the best of the South Park Characters. Smart, sweet, funny and an old soul.


  16. S. Trevor Swenson Says:

    Any version of Santa Baby sung by a gay man with a lisp is decidedly brilliant. Maybe Barney Frank could record a version and give the CDs to Boehner, Cantor and Rush Limbaugh.

    John Waters has a great Christmas CD out with fantastic obscure oldies like “Santa was a Black Man” and I am a fan of Cheech and Chongs “Santa and His Old Lady”

    Charo’s “Feliz Navidad” on the Pee Wee Herman special is lovely. “I wan to weesh jew de Merry Chreestmah”


  17. Walter Says:

    Well you’ve ruined my day! I now have that stupidhead Paul McCartney song stuck in my head. Personally I don’t ever need to hear Eartha Kit singing Santa Baby again. I used to love Baby It’s Cold Outside but have grown tired of it as well. Andy Williams has a few I love to imitate around the house this time of year and I never tire of impersonating Elvis’s Blue Christmas. I’d say every song noted in this piece, including comments, have made me want to listen to The Clash as I decorate my tree.


  18. Andrew Says:

    I do a weekly radio show on the history of Rock for WYPR 88.1, and I we just recorded our Christmas show.

    I took the time to do a Hate List, which was as follows:

    1. “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” OVERPLAYED.
    2. “Happy Christmas (War is Over).” I know some people like it. I think it’s the most miserable song involving the word “Happy.”
    3. Paul McCartney’s unlistenable dreck denounced above.
    4. “Last Christmas.” Dreadful song that people will not stop playing. Wham is Culture Club with better hair. That is all.


  19. joyfullyoutlandish Says:

    Thanks for this question of the week; I think it’s a particularly good one.

    “Have a Holly, Jolly Christmas” is one Christmas song that I cannot stand. When I hear that man’s voice I want to box the radio. Any of the oldies Christmas songs are jarring and, quite frankly, depressing. In fact, more than angry, most popular Christmas music makes me depressed. Not sure why. Maybe because it takes this special, religious celebration and turns it into a tacky, sappy, oozing-with-candy-cane-treacle frenzy of sentiment.

    You mentioned the “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” song. A friend of mine falls into the category of those who hate it, but her nickname for it makes me laugh and like it a little. She calls it “The Date Rape Song.”

    In response to Andrew’s comment, yes, the “Happy Christmas (War is Over)” song is particularly atrocious. It doesn’t help that when I was a nanny one of the children sang it all the time for three months straight.


  20. Kansas Keeton Says:

    I enjoyed this very much. I share an equal hatred for traditional Christmas songs, but I can get down on some of that Celtic shit with flutes and violins. Greensleeves is pretty safe, right? I’d say my least favorite Christmas song is Feliz Navidad, solely for the awful melody, and I can’t even bash on the lyrics since they are in Spanish. I also abhor “Walking Around the Christmas Tree,” “Jingle Bells,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” and “Santa Baby,” all of which I think have insufferable lyrics. I don’t hate many things, but I harbor a large spot in my heart for the hatred of Christmas music. Sorry for the essay. Apparently I have a lot more to say about this than just disgruntled muttering when walking into a retail store.


  21. Blogdramedy Says:

    The Christmas Song by Dana. If you haven’t heard it, go google. It’s seriously hurting…my ears.


  22. madtante Says:

    I had to come back to tell you this:

    I thought of you last night.

    I was in Walgreens buying essentials (dark chocolate cordial cherries, some people buy meds) and this HORRIBLE song came on. Squeaky voice, some broad. I listened to ask people at work who the hell it was when she said, “Last Christmas.” I don’t know that song but it’s mentioned here by Wham, so I wanted you to know it’s awful (we can agree), at least by that broad. Happy Christmas!


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      Hm, I think the Wham one is “This Christmas”… maybe I’m wrong. I’ll have to look for it.


      • madtante Says:

        Feck. Look, I really shouldn’t ever comment or try to take part in a convo about pop culture. Now, I can’t remember what it was but I thought at the time that must be the same song cos it was AWFUL.


        • The Byronic Man Says:

          Actually, I think you were right. I’ve seen it referred to several times as “Last Christmas.” But I do know Taylor Swift has a song called “Last Christmas” and she’s of the female variety. (I’ve never heard the song, I just know of it’s alleged existence)


          • madtante Says:

            Using your name (Taylor Swift)–I typed in christmas and it’s her #1 hit for Christmas. That’s the POS I heard. MY GOD!

            That’s the name I hear all the time about how awesome a singer she is? She’s on helium. That’s GOOD?! Ugh. See? This is why I don’t watch TV or listen to radio. It’s horrible. I honestly don’t know why somebody would like that. It’s trite and that’s the nicest thing I can say about it.


  23. thesinglecell Says:

    I’m a musical purist to a great degree. I absolutely, positively, without a doubt HATE Wham!’s “Last Christmas,” and any other iteration of it. The second I hear the first two chords I switch it off and rage internally for 30 minutes. Related: I hate bands with exclamation points in their names. I used to love Wham! but really the exclamation point is a bit much.

    I also hate Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” both because it’s an annoyingly overplayed song (much like “Last Christmas”) and because she trained as a legit opera singer who sold out to sing schlock and do coloratura on the radio. I can’t stomach any pop artist’s recording of “O Holy Night” except MAYBE Josh Groban’s because at least it’s close to the way the song is meant to be sung. And I kind of hate “Christmas Shoes” too, like you. Because it makes me feel all sad and sappy and then I capitulate to resenting the manipulation because why do you make me want to cry my eyes out on Christmas and who the hell actually goes to the store to buy his mom shoes on Christmas eve because his dad says she doesn’t have much time? Nobody does that. They stay with their mom because she’s freaking dying, and who wants to go to the shoe store right then? Dumb. And then I feel bad for being a hardass about a dying mother and her adorable, if broke, little boy.

    I might need therapy.


    • The Byronic Man Says:

      No, I think it’s rare that moments before dying people request items of fashion. Oscar Wilde, maybe.

      Also, getting the kid out of the house and then mom’s dead when he returns? This is a song about MURDER!


  24. Antigone's Clamor Says:

    WOW. Being a Star Wars geek, I’m surprised that I hadn’t heard of this song. It’s hilarious!!


  25. Kitchen Slattern Says:

    “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” by Jimmy Boyd. Creepy, pre-pubescent, adenoidal warbling. Beyond putrid. Antidote? The Ventures Christmas Album — surf instrumental covers that make even the most cringe-inducing carol sound cool. A must for your holiday party.


  26. Kevin J.J. Murray Says:

    I actually liked the Wookie song. It’s so bad it’s good! The Star Wars fan in me is so horrified he’s laughing. Thanks for sharing 😀


  27. freddyflow Says:

    Must agree with others, “Santa Baby” is satanic.


  28. Joanna Oz-Davis Says:

    Anyone in the mood for writing a song about Rudolph’s Recovery? The song where Santa tells the tragic tale of the REAL meaning behind Rudolph’s red nose. (“Then, one Tragic Christmas Eve, Santa came to say, “Rudolph, with your nose so bright! You’re gonna be on Celebrity Rehab tonight!”)


  29. Progress Says:

    All I’d want for Christmas is a more progressive government to empower great restrictions on the how this egregious holiday is displayed and celebrated. Dreaming is like masturbating, it feels great but it produces nothing.



  1. Christmas Music: Songs of Hate « Andrew J. Patrick - December 8, 2011

    […] Byronic Man has a post typical of this kind of year: Christmas Songs You’d Like To Punch In Their Stupid Faces. Something about the inevitable schmaltz of the holiday season brings out the rage in […]

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