Christmas is a time for many things – caring, sharing, forgiveness.
However, putting the jolly present-giving fella in the red suit on trial isn’t usually one that comes to mind.
But the folks at Laudable Pods are doing just that – in a light-hearted way (we hope). After all, while most of us enjoy the festive season, there are always a few curmudgeonly sorts who will see the downside, like cheaply-made gifts with dodgy power supplies, moaning about the snow, and hitting New Year a couple of stones heavier...
Others will argue that it’s clichéd to be cynical at Christmas – Dan McLaughlin is the festive fanatic who will defend cheesy cracker jokes, join in with Mariah’s incessant warbling, take delight in braving the shops on Xmas Eve (or more likely, has had everything wrapped since late September).
He’ll also make the case for other staples that define the most wonderful time of the year – is Die Hard a festive film, is Bad Santa 2 a worthy sequel, and should Michael Bublé be left frozen in the North Pole permanently, like Han Solo in carbonite (obviously; sadly, no; and does Rudolph have a red nose?)
Dan calls Laudable’s first Christmas podcast “a bit of festive fun, and a well-needed laugh”.
He said: “I am a huge fan of Christmas, and I hope my defence of Santa Claus will help put me on the nice list this year.
“The Trial of Santa Claus is a very silly, tongue-in-cheek podcast, and it has been a hoot to record with my colleagues, Kelly and Matt."
Yes, rather unfairly, the prosecution come as a tag team of Scrooges, in the shape of Matt Millard and Kelly Crighton. The harumphing humburgers give a resounding “oh no it isn’t” to panto, a no no no to Dan’s “ho ho ho”, and a Christmas boo to the “soulless excuse for capitalism”, before heading off to do their festive shop in an all-night garage (probably).
“I don’t think the prosecution are quite the Scrooges that they make out in the podcast," Dan adds, "but they have put forward some very convincing arguments that have almost swayed me at times!”
However, the final decision will be made by jury, comprising listeners to the podcast. After each episode airs, you will get the chance to vote in a Twitter poll @LaudablePods.
If you agree with the defence, Santa’s salvation edges nearer; or if you agree with the prosecution, Saint Nick is closer to, er, the nick.
By the end of the 12 days, ‘The Trial of Santa Claus’ will determine Father Christmas’ guilt or innocence – and whether he can ride his sleigh with his reindeer ahead of the big day itself.
Laudable is a podcast collaboration between newsrooms at Reach and JPI Media, creating audio journalism for all audiences. You can hear other festive offerings this Christmas in their Brummie Mummies, The Northern Agenda, and Scran podcasts.
The Trial of Santa Claus is available on all major podcasting platforms, including Apple and Spotify. The first episode aired on December 12, and it will run until Christmas Eve where the listeners will decide the fate of Christmas.
More at linktr.ee/laudable_podcasts.